Status report for January 2020: Services on Windows 10 Mobile

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With some social applications, comms apps and Microsoft services being phased out as time goes on, I thought a ready reference table of where Windows 10 Mobile stands would be useful. And I'll revisit this every month to update each section as needed. In summary, there's likely to be little disruption to 'normal' activities this year but a few more caveats in 2020, now that Windows 10 Mobile is out of official support. [This is the January 2020 update, a month on from the previous one.]

Lumia 950 XL and apps

Yes, we're in an odd phase of the OS, where most of the stuff that ever works still works (and is supported), but things are falling off the edges, as it were. Which means that it's hard to keep track of it all - hence the table below, which I'll keep updated every so often. [last update 14th Jan 2020]

Note that some dates are approximate, since even we at AAWP can't see into the future with certainty! I've colour coded table cells, with pale red for 'on the way out, with workarounds and caveats' and red for 'no hope!'...

Microsoft services
Security updates As of Microsoft's last minute extension, there's apparently one more to come, on the 14th January 2020 (today, in theory, as I publish this), for the newest 1709 branch - here's the December update. Theoretically, vulnerable after this, though in practice Windows 10 Mobile is now battle hardened and also a miniscule target for attackers, so the lack of updates won't actually be an issue.
Firmware rebuilds (WDRT, OTC Updater, etc.) If something goes horribly wrong and you need a fresh start then there are a couple of PC-based utilities to help out, though they rely on the original phone 'images' being still available on Microsoft's servers. I can't imagine the downloads here amount to much, but Microsoft will, at some point, shut down these servers, probably because things are changing server-side to accommodate new services and platforms. No end date is known, I'd guess, 2022 or beyond. They're all still working right now. I'll report back if more becomes known.
Web browsing (Edge) Edge remains a competent browser for most sites, plus it syncs your history and favourites in the usual way. But its development stopped as of Windows 10 branch 1703 over two years ago, effectively, since the 1709 branch's Edge wasn't fully rounded out (in terms of service worker and other background operation). Which makes it something of a dead end if you're looking for more. Third party browsers like Monument Browser do more, though ultimately have the same underlying restrictions for PWAs and some other HTML5-reliant sites.
Auto-backups Until March 2020 - it's not clear whether manual backups will be possible after this. Watch this space, I'll obviously test this nearer the time!
Restoring from backups Until March 2021 - after this, if you hard reset a Windows 10 Mobile phone then you'd have to rebuild it manually, installing from the Store, etc. Which will still hopefully function.
Store apps Application updates and installs should be fine until at least the end of 2021. 
Store client Ignore scare stories about the Store client itself not being updated anymore - updates with bug fixes and security tweaks will continue for at least a year, possibly more, albeit with new features and UI fanciments only for Redstone 3 and above (i.e. on Desktop/Hololens, etc.) And yes, some of these updates will have knock on effects for Windows 10 Mobile - anyone else had problems with the Store needing a manual 'Refresh' recently?
Auto-Photos upload to OneDrive Until December 2020 - after that you'd have to upload images manually. It's worth noting that the OneDrive client on iOS and Android is excellent - if you do switch at some point then you essentially carry on with the same interface and auto photo stream in the cloud (subject to your storage plan, e.g. 1TB with Office 365)
OneDrive music streaming Stopped from May 2019 onwards, at least from within Groove Music app. You can still stream from OneDrive or download from both first and third party applications - see the linked article for suggestions.
OneDrive No cessation date announced, likely 2022 or beyond.
Outlook Mail, Calendar
No cessation date announced, likely 2022 or beyond. Outlook app development is all on newer Windows 10 branches though, so the current one on Windows 10 Mobile is only receiving small bug fixes and none of the sexier stuff you'll read about in the news.
Office UWP applications Updates for these will stop in January 2021, though the applications will carry on working indefinitely. Main app development is all on newer Windows 10 branches though, so the current Office UWP apps on Windows 10 Mobile are only receiving bug fixes and no new features.
Maps/Navigation No cessation date announced, likely 2022 or beyond. 'Automatically update maps' doesn't seem to work reliably anymore, but you can still check for updates and pick up new maps manually, in 'Settings/Apps/Offline maps'. Worth doing every couple of months, I reckon, there's usually a new map update when I check on each device!
News, Weather No cessation date announced, likely 2022 or beyond. Functionality for the UWP apps under Windows 10 Mobile has been frozen for a while, but News in particular is still getting tweaks to encompass new news sources and options.
Microsoft To-Do No cessation date announced, but application updates have now stopped on Mobile, with new features only appearing on higher Windows 10 branch numbers, for the Desktop. Compatibility with base (textual) To-do data is likely until at least 2022 though. 
Cortana This should carry on 'working' into 2020, though the withdrawal of Cortana on iOS and Android does lead me to suspect that Cortana results will break at some point in the year. Already we've seen significant restrictions in what it's capable of.
Films & TV (aka 'Movies & TV') No cessation date announced, but several rumours. Clever money has new purchases stopping soon and no access to past purchases stopping in 2020. Just a guess. I've checked and past purchases are still available, the DRM still works, and with no warning messages in-app. Watch this space.
Skype No cessation date announced for the UWP app (the Desktop is now back to Win32, effectively), but it's 100% online and requires server integration, obviously, so I wouldn't be surprised if a date (early 2020?) for Skype on Windows 10 Mobile was announced soon, tying in roughly with the end of support for the OS itself.
Social applications
Twitter Official client is a PWA (link is to latest update), but works very well apart from lack of push notifications. Here's the latest changelog. API limitations at Twitter's end mean that there's no fully working third party alternative (at least, one that also has access to DMs).
Facebook Official (Osmeta-based, derived from iOS codebase) client has now been withdrawn from the Store, and even if you have it previously installed then it crashes and burns. There are numerous Facebook 'scraping' applications and options though, and these run faster and more efficiently than the Facebook original client (go figure!)
Facebook Messenger Official (Osmeta-based, derived from iOS codebase) client also now not available anymore. Good riddance, arguably, since it was bloated. The solutions linked in the row above also include basic Messenger support, though. Apparently. Never used Messenger in my life!
Instagram Official (Osmeta-based, derived from iOS codebase) client has now been withdrawn, being part of the Facebook 'empire'. There are several third party alternatives though, the clear favourite of which is Winsta UWP. There's an official Instagram PWA, but it explicitly pops up a 'not supported' message when run under Windows 10 Mobile.
Whatsapp The official WP8.1 client is about to officially stop working, as per Windows 10 Mobile official support timescale. It has also been withdrawn from the Store now. If you need to backup your chat messages then NOW is the time. And if you need a Whatsapp replacement and don't want to switch platform then see Telegram, below.
Telegram Plenty of options here, with an official 8.1 application that is gradually falling into disrepair, but also an official PWA that works well (though with no push notifications) and a third party app, Unigram UWP. For messaging anyway, voice and video calls aren't supported.
Viber This messaging app has a first party UWP application, but reviews have been patchy - it's not actively updated. According to readers it still works fine for messaging, voice and video though.
Snapchat This has never been on Windows phones and never will be. Apparently the founder hated Microsoft and Windows....
Pinterest There's no official client for this, but in Edge seems to be a PWA and acts like an application. Plus, if you still want a native UWP application experience, there's 'Piny - Pinterest with love' UWP
Media consumption  

The official WP8.1 application still technically runs, but has now lost search functions and is clearly on the way out. If you're serious about Spotify though, then you'll have the £10/month premium tier, and then you can use the new and rather swish Spotimo UWP.

There's also the quirky but rather wonderful Spoticast Music UWP, though it cheats in terms of its music sources, which can be confusing. Still, it's gloriously bonkers and very pretty!

Netflix The official WP8.1 application still works, albeit being slow to load video streams. It hasn't been updated for years though and (again) I wouldn't be surprised to see Netflix stop supporting soon in 2020, tying in with deadlines on this page generally.
Amazon Prime Video Amazon has never had an official application for Windows phones, but if you're happy to fiddle a little in Edge then you can watch this on the go. It's not trivial though and is a complete pain in the proverbial compared to the slick experience in a dedicated app on other platforms.
Deezer There's a rather good official UWP client for this, so no need to look further. I'd expect this to work well into 2020, and possibly beyond.
YouTube One of the more famous spats between Google and Microsoft, this hasn't had an official application for years, though of course it works fine in the Edge browser. I'd recommend myTube!, Perfect Tube or Awesome Tube though, all UWP applications with slick interfaces and all kept bang up to date.
BBC iPlayer This has been browser-only for years under Windows phone and Windows 10 Mobile, but it's fine. There's the usual 'log into the BBC servers' and you're in and watching. There's no downloading of programmes for watching later though, for DRM reasons.

Do please let me know, by email or in the comments, if there are any inaccuracies in the above table or if you have information to update it. Thanks.

Delivering a 'report card' for the status above is tricky. I'd say that the OS is viable still, with the obvious omissions (tap to pay, IoT support, online banking apps) that have been there for a while now. There are certainly enough workarounds and alternative applications for most people.

But your comments and updates welcome! This is an update to the original story, so I've left previous comments in place.

PS. Another valid question might be what will happen to AAWP itself in 2020 and beyond? Rafe and I are chatting about resources, of course, but a) do please join the occasional guest writers if you have something to say/review/discuss, email me at, and b) well, you know where my tip jar is...(!)