Reading the ‘What’s new in this release’ document, I found
Reorder Fields in Query. Added ability to reorder fields in Query search panel.
I thought that we now can change the order of the fields in the af:query component at design time, like in an af:gridLayout, and started searching the documentation.
Sadly it turned out that this is not a design time option, as I thought, but a run time option!
This is documented at ‘33.2 Creating Query Search Forms’. Below you see the images from a query in advanced mode with the reorder button (down right) and the reorder dialog.
To reorder the fields at design time you can only use the technique blogged by Luc Bors ADF 11g: Change attribute order in query component