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XAML concepts for Windows Phone 8

[ This article is for Windows Phone 8 developers. If you’re developing for Windows 10, see the latest documentation. ]

The topics in this section explain concepts that are generally applicable to any app that you write if you are using C#, Visual Basic, or C++ as your programming language, and XAML for your UI definition.


XAML is a declarative language that you can use to create the visible user UI elements in your apps. Then, you can associate a separate code-behind file for each XAML file, which will respond to events and manipulate the objects that you declare in the XAML. For more info, see XAML for Windows Phone 8.

Dependency properties

A dependency property is a specialized kind of property that has a value that’s based on the value of other inputs. A dependency property helps support the following features:

  • Data binding

  • Styles

  • Animations

  • PropertyChanged behavior

  • Default value through metadata

  • General property system utility and metadata lookup

For more info, see Dependency properties for Windows Phone 8.


An event is a message sent by an object to signal the occurrence of an action. A routed event is an event that is potentially passed on—routed—from a child object to each of its successive parent objects in the object tree. For more info, see Events for Windows Phone 8.

Data binding

Data binding provides a simple way for apps to display and interact with data. The way that data is displayed is separate from the way that data is managed. A connection, or binding, between the UI and a data object allows data to flow between the two. For more info, see Data binding for Windows Phone 8.


Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM) is a way to separate your data from your UI. MVVM allows developers to code data models, and designers to create UIs. For more info, see Implementing the Model-View-ViewModel pattern for Windows Phone 8.