16 Essential keyboard shortcuts everyone should know using Continuum for phones

Continuum for phones is a fantastic new feature that Microsoft is including in Windows 10 Mobile. The feature allows you to transform your phone easily into a computer-like experience by using the Microsoft Display Dock or Miracast to connect the handset to an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

Once you have set up Continuum, you can easily go to the Start screen to open and work on any Universal Windows app. Although, Continuum isn't exactly the same experience like working with the desktop version of Windows 10, it's very similar, and you can get a lot of work done when you're not near to your main computer.

In addition to the familiar user interface and being able to work on the same Universal Windows apps, you can use on the desktop version of the operating system using Continuum, you can also get a lot of work done faster using keyboard shortcuts to navigate and perform different tasks.

As you probably already know, Continuum in Windows 10 Mobile supports many of the keyboard shortcuts you can use in Windows 10 for PC, but not every shortcut is supported. Here's what is supported in the Continuum experience:

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Keyboard shortcutAction
Keyboard shortcutAction
Windows KeyOpen/Close Start screen
Windows Key + AOpen Action Center
Windows Key + COpen Cortana in listening mode
Windows Key + EOpen File Explorer
Windows Key + IOpen Settings
Windows Key + KOpen the Connect quick action
Windows Key + LLock your handset
Windows Key + OLock device orientation
Windows Key + POpen display settings
Windows Key + SOpen search (Cortana in search mode)
Windows Key + UOpen Ease of Access Center
Windows Key + TabOpen Task view
Windows Key + BackspaceGo back
Windows Key + SpacebarSwitch input language and keyboard layout
Windows Key + Print ScreenTake a screenshot. However, you need a keyboard that includes the Print Screen key. If not, you can't take screenshots on the external display
Alt + TabSwitch between open apps

It's worth pointing out that a few other Windows shortcuts may work as well, but we're listing only the shortcuts officially supported in Windows 10 Mobile using Continuum. For example, Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V shortcuts to cut and paste content work inside of apps, but they are not fully supported across Continuum in places like File Explorer (you cannot cut and paste files with these shortcuts, for example).

Also, note that in order to use Continuum for phones, you need a new handset, such as Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL. Older Windows phones do not support the feature due to hardware limitations, even once they're updated to Windows 10 Mobile

Do you have any specific shortcut you like to use with Continuum for phones? Tell us in the comments below.

More resources

If you want to read more about Windows phones, make sure you check these resources:

Mauro Huculak

Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.