Plasma Mobile is one of the prettiest user interfaces available for Linux phones, but when I’ve tested it in the past it hasn’t exactly been super speedy.
So it’s good to know that the developers behind Plasma Mobile are working on making the software faster while also reducing memory usage, at least when it comes to some applications.
There’s a new “Breeze Style” theme for Plasma Mobile applications that allows the file manager to start 25-percent faster, and which allows the Kirigami Gallery application to cut RAM usage by about a third. While that alone probably isn’t enough to make Plasma Mobile fast on a low-spec device like the PinePhone, I’d settle for faster.
Those are just some of the changes the Plasma Mobile team is highlighting in a year-end update covering changes made in the last few months.
Some of the other changes include:
- Updated phone dialer application with refreshed user interface and placeholders icons for empty lists
- Updated virtual keyboard light and dark themes
- Support for initiating actions from the lock screen (you’ll need to enter your passcode before they’re executed)
- NeoChat Matrix Client is now optimized for Plasma Mobile and picks up new features
- Angelfish web browser now supports an ad blocker
- Updates to apps including KClock, Kalk (calculator), and Okular (document viewer)
You can find more details in the Plasma Mobile November & December update blog post. Or if you have a PinePhone and want to give the software a try, you can find download links and installation instructions at the Plasma Mobile website.
There are recent nightly builds of Manjaro ARM and KDE Neon with the latest Plasma Mobile UI, apps, and features. You can also give Plasma Mobile on postmarketOS a try, but when I checked, the latest nightly release was from November 30.