The HarmonyOS 3.0 operating system has been officially announced by Huawei in China and promises to deliver both interface and performance improvements this autumn. The first device to ship with the new version will be the MatePad 11 Pro tablet, announced at the same event, but it will also be compatible with Huawei smartphones, watches and smart TVs and beyond.
New HarmonyOS 3.0 brings changes to Huawei’s interface
There are now over 300 million active devices with HarmonyOS installed. These are mostly phones, tablets and watches sold in China, but some of the models are also found in Europe. But it seems that the number of HarmonyOS Connect-enabled devices, such as home appliances and other smart devices and accessories, is growing just as fast. Recently we even saw a water bottle connected to the smartphone.
The most important changes to the interface are in the widgets, which can take many shapes and sizes and adjust the way content is displayed on them. As in iOS, widgets can be placed in the main menu, among apps, or placed on top of each other in interactive stacks.
Another important new feature is the ability to connect two pairs of true wireless headphones to a single smartphone to provide simultaneous listening for two people. We’ve seen such features in the past on iOS and Samsung’s OneUI on a few headphone models. And in Huawei’s case, only some will allow this capability, like the new FreeBuds Pro 2.
The most important new features of HarmonyOS 3.0, however, are related to performance, where Huawei promises to deliver up to 7% improvements in app startup, 14% faster response time in app actions, and 18% improvement in screen swipes. Thus, the phones will provide a smoother feel than on HarmonyOS 2. Power consumption should also drop by 11% in apps using the GPU compared to the previous version.
Huawei promises the release of HarmonyOS 3.0 in September on select compatible devices. Unfortunately, we don’t yet have an official list or confirmation that its OS will come to smartphones outside of China.