Microsoft’s Arrow launcher for Android hits version 3.0; new features, better battery life

The Arrow launcher first launched as a Microsoft Garage project in 2015. It has improved significantly since then, consistently adding useful features.

Arrow launcher’s version 2.0 launched back in July of 2016. Arrow 2.0 added Office 365 support, enabling users to use their work or school account and sync contacts, calendar, email, and everything else with the launcher.

It’s a unique launcher used by millions of Android users every day, and it just got better.

The Update

Today’s update bumps the Arrow launcher to version As this is a major version bump, the Arrow team has managed to include some major new features as well.

Utility Page

This is one of the biggest features in Arrow 3.0. The Utility Page takes the place of Google Now and represents the Arrow’s team take on Google’s card UX.

In a nutshell, the Utility Page gives you quick and easy access to some of the most important things on a mobile device.

There’s a card that highlights your most frequently used apps, another one that highlights the people you most recently contacted.

In addition to those, there’s also a card for reminders as well as a to-do list. In short, this feature is extensible and can include anything the Arrow team likes.

Hopefully, at some point, 3rd party developers will be able to integrate into this page and add their own features.


Arrow 3.0 also comes with some major performance improvements; per Microsoft, the new update reduces RAM usage by 20%.

It’s also 10% faster than before. These optimizations have directly affected the amount of battery Arrow launcher consumes. It now consumes 15% less battery, when compared with the previous version.

The Rest

In addition to the two major updates, there are some minor changes as well.

It’s now possible to switch between vertical and horizontal scrolling for the Apps page.

There’s also a slight change to how the Backup & Restore feature works, but Microsoft is quite vague about what the change is. It’s likely something extremely minor that won’t affect most users.

The update also speaks of some bug fixes but doesn’t detail what they are.


Arrow 3.0 for Android is rolling out as you read this via the Google Play Store. If you haven’t received the update, just be patient and wait for the masters at Microsoft and/or Google to increase the rollout pace.

If you would like to try the Arrow launcher, simply search for it on the Google Play Store.

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