I'm not seeing anything resembling hit location anymore. That will definately speed up the mechanic (or the same if...). Although I liked the detail of being able to tailor some of that equipment we typically used/use the "hit me anywhere" rule until we got to criticals..at which point ONE chart would have sufficed under the old rules.
I think normal wounds will represent general bumps, fatigue and bruises and critical hits will take hit location into consideration at which point the armor will be important to decide the nastiness of the critical.
I have been also thinking how they are going to consider the parrying and dodging mechanics (if they keep them) now that they have pool of dice. I would favour an approach that used also a pool of dice for the defender. Successes rolled by the defender would counter successes rolled by the attacker and, thanks to the pool of dice, you could easily determine whether the defense successes came from dodging, parrying, armor or pure luck.
Of course, this would add some extra complexity but gives more tactical richness and more precise combat results that help tell the story. No longer would attacks be a 0(no hit) or 100 (hit) affair. You could have attacks half-parried, half-dodged, etc...
I think I'll probably try to homerule this if defense in 3rd edition is "static" (i.e., difficult to influence with the defender's tactical decisions); I always liked systems where you could adjust your defense results not only with equipment and would find a pity not to use the possibilities of dice pool for achieving this...Also, we already added an extra roll in 2nd edition for Dodging or Parrying, so it would not add a lot more time to the combat.