What is CShell in Windows Mobile and how it works?

Windows C Shell

The direct answer is that C Shell unifies the desktop, tablet, phone user interface into one, meaning that the new shell on windows would basically bring the same user interface to every device that runs Windows 10 software. Microsoft’s Windows operating systems for phones, PCs, Xbox, and even Hololens share a lot of DNA under the hood. But going from a Windows notebook to a Windows phone isn’t entirely seamless, since there are some key differences in the user interface and this is where C Shell may help you.

C Shell

How CShell makes Windows phones act more like Windows desktops

When you first look at the Start Screen on a Windows Phone with CShell you will find that it looks a lot like earlier versions of the Start Screen. But it behaves more like the Windows 10 Start Menu. With additional size options for Live Tiles and context menus for resizing, moving, pinning, or even uninstalling apps from the Start Screen. The notification area also looks virtually identical to the desktop Windows 10 version. Under the hood, the operating system is still the mobile version of Windows, so the Settings menu is for phones, and you’re still limited to running Universal Windows Platform, apps.

There’s also support for landscape mode, and perhaps the most exciting thing is that if you use a phone that supports Continuum functionality, you now have the same Windows 10 desktop-style start menu on an external display and support for app windowing.

Previously you could only run apps in full screen mode when using Continuum for phone. Now you can resize apps, move them around the screen, and view multiple apps in split-screen, tiled, or other views.

Windows C Shell

Therefore this Composable shell or CShell is exactly what it sounds like, állowing the Windows Shell to recompose itself on the fly for the device mode it is currently in. In simpler terms, this means that Windows will present you with the best user interface for your device, for example, a desktop in Continuum mode resembling the Windows 10 Native desktop in C-Shell, or a mobile phone running C-Shell resembling the current Windows 10 Mobile UI with elements from the Windows 10 Desktop UI integrated into it. This is because, for all intents and purposes, the shell for all these devices is to be the same, just recomposing itself into the best view for the current hardware.

Windows C Shell

So with full Windows 10 on ARM on the way, the chances of a Windows 10 phone that can do it all has become even higher and CShell could very well be the gateway for uses to have that seamless experience of Windows 10 anywhere and everywhere.