Spb Mobile Shell 2.0 review: SPB Mobile Shell 2.0

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Typical Price: $33.00

Spb Mobile Shell 2.0

(Part #: CNETSpb Mobile Shell 2.0)
4.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Excellent design. Easy to use. Memory efficient.

The Bad Launcher screen appears cluttered.

The Bottom Line Spb's Mobile Shell is a must-have for Windows Mobile users. It's design improves the use of Windows Mobile smartphones dramatically, as well as adding some much needed eye candy.

9.0 Overall
CNET Editors' Choice Mar '08

Your new Windows Mobile phone is great, right? You know under the bonnet is a powerful machine running the latest version of an OS that's supported by a slew of freeware and shareware applications. The trouble is every time you whip out your new smartphone to impress your friends they end up falling asleep after glimpsing the über-dull Windows Mobile interface. Well, no more.

Design and features
Software developer Spb have the solution to you Windows Mobile doldrums. SBP Mobile Shell 2.0 is an application that sits 'on top' of the Windows Mobile interface giving quick access to most of the phone's functions and menus while also managing to look very sexy.

The shell's greatest advantage is what Spb call 'thumb touch' icons, which are desktop icons big enough to push accurately with your big, fat thumbs. Anyone who has tried to use the tiny Windows Mobile 'Start' menu without a stylus will welcome thumb touch with open arms.

When executed the Spb Shell has three active screen spaces. The first is the 'Now' screen displaying the time, local weather, organiser notes, as well as messages and missed calls and remaining battery life.

The second is a 'launcher' screen; giving shortcut access to almost every application and settings menu on the phone via a 'rotating cube' display, which is very similar to the interface we see on the latest HTC devices. But the SBP shell goes much deeper than just the contacts and media gallery display on HTC handsets. All installed programs, tools, settings, organiser listings, as well as 10 customisable shortcuts can be accessed through this second screen, removing any need to use the ultra-tiny Windows Mobile Start menu ever again.

The final window is the speed dial; a graphical display of your 15 favourite contacts plus a shortcut to your complete contact listings. Selecting a contact from this screen opens the contact's details with access to two phone numbers and a link to SMS the contact.

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