At this year's IFA 2018 trade show, Huawei spoke in greater detail about its EMUI 9.0 mobile OS based on Android 9 Pie, and announced that a beta version of the 9.0 build is now available for testing in Europe for owners of the Huawei P20, P20 Pro, Mate 10, Mate 10 Pro, Honor 10, Honor V10, and Honor Play, with additional models expected to join the party in the near future. As for what’s new in the latest EMUI version, Huawei primarily focused on its new Natural UX, describing it as simple, enjoyable, and consistent, while also touching on performance with the implementation of quicker app launching and GPU Turbo 2.0, among other improvements.
Additionally, EMUI 9.0 also features a “helpful AI” which seems to provide travel assistance and the inclusion of a password vault for storing passwords locally and recalling them using the fingerprint scanner. Speaking of artificial intelligence, Huawei also confirmed that EMUI 9.0 will facilitate a major upgrade for the HiAI ecosystem, with the HiAI engine increasing its portfolio of online APIs from 22 to 33, and providing enhanced computer vision for object recognition, among other improvements. As for the user interface, there seems to be a higher emphasis on gesture-based and one-hand navigation along with a more minimalist overall design. There’s also a focus on natural scenery and sounds, with beautiful landscapes now being a part of the UI of various applications including alarms and the phone app.
According to a report passed along by XDA-Developers, only about 100 beta slots are available for each country in Europe where EMUI 9.0 has launched for testing, and as yet it’s unclear whether these beta testers are picked by the Chinese OEM randomly or by specific criteria. In any case, Huawei at IFA also confirmed that more details about EMUI 9.0 will be unveiled on October 16 in London during the official launch of the Huawei Mate 20 which will likely become the OEM’s first smartphone to feature EMUI 9.0 out of the box. The Mate 20 is also expected to be the first handset to make use of the brand new Kirin 980 chipset which was uncovered at IFA in Berlin last week. It boasts a total of eight CPU cores split into three clusters, resulting in improved energy management and higher performance.