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Windows CShell Uses Continuum to Bring Full Desktop Experience to Windows 10 Mobile

Microsoft’s Windows CShell one branch ecosystem has been shown in pre-release form running Windows 10 Mobile. It introduces tropes of Windows 10 PC, such as the taskbar, multiple windows, and the Start menu.


Earlier in the week, we reported on CShell, 's new OS that will unify as a single platform across devices. A new report from Zac Bowden at Windows Central takes the information further by showing how Windows CShell interacts for .

Specifically, using an early pre-release version of CShell on an HP Elite X3, Bowden shows how will work on the one-branch platform. By using Continuum, Windows 10 Mobile users will leverage CShell to get a near identical Windows 10 desktop experience on their handset.

Currently, Continuum is limited to just a single window. The true Windows 10 desktop experience is also hampered by smartphone staples, like the status bar. By using a CShell empowered device, the status bar is folded into the taskbar, while the Start menu is also present.

As we mentioned in our previous report, Windows 10 Mobile also gets the Action Center from PC. As on desktop, the taskbar shows the system tray with Wi-Fi, battery, and other status icons. CShell will also bring more colorization options to the OS. Additionally, Windows phone users will finally be able to change their wallpaper.

Windows CShell Continuum: Image credit Windows Central

Live tiles are a big part of the look and feel of Windows 10, and this is enhanced on mobile. With Windows 10 Continuum through the one platform ecosystem, users can customize live tiles and context menus. Back to the taskbar, it appears that it can be dragged and repositioned to different sides of the screen.

Arguably the most interesting aspect is how Windows 10 Continuum will handle apps and windows. Through Windows CShell, apps will open as a separate window. This is exciting enough, but it becomes more pleasing as it means multi-windows support will be possible.

Of course, this again mirrors what is available on desktop, but it could mean Windows 10 Mobile becoming a true multi-tasking platform.

CShell and the Future

Windows CShell is a scalable version of Windows that adapts the UI to work across devices. While the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) started the convergence of the platform, but CShell is a level beyond.

The plan is for users to enjoy the same Windows 10 experience across all devices. In other words, we are talking about One Windows, built on one branch.

Microsoft has talked recently about its desire to redefine the mobile space. This seems to be a condition of the company returning to the hardware market. We also know that Microsoft will drive for enterprise customers in the mobile space.

CShell can and will help the company on all these fronts. However, it is worth noting that Microsoft is still developing the feature. Indeed, the pre-release that Bowden uses is a very early build. I guess Microsoft will have much more to add and it is exciting to see how far Windows CShell can go.

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.

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