What’s New in WordPress 4.8

WordPress 4.8 was released just a few hours ago. It is the first major release of 2017, with some long awaited new features and enhancements. In this article, we will show you what’s new in WordPress 4.8 and which features you should try after updating… Read More »

The post What’s New in WordPress 4.8 appeared first on WPBeginner.

WordPress 4.8 was released just a few hours ago. It is the first major release of 2017, with some long awaited new features and enhancements. In this article, we will show you what’s new in WordPress 4.8 and which features you should try after updating your websites.

What's new in WordPress 4.8

4.8 is a major WordPress release, and unless you are on a managed WordPress hosting service, you will have to manually initiate the update.

Important: Don’t forget to create a complete WordPress backup before starting the update.

The All New Media Widgets

There are three new default widgets in WordPress 4.8. Users had been asking for these widgets for a long time, and they are finally here.

Image Widget

The new image widget in WordPress 4.8

Previously if users wanted to add an image to the WordPress sidebar, then they had to either use a plugin or write custom HTML.

With WordPress 4.8, you can just drag and drop the image widget to a sidebar. Simply click on the ‘Add image’ button in the widget settings, and it will bring up the familiar WordPress media uploader.

You can upload the image from your computer or select a previously uploaded image from the media library. Once uploaded, click on the ‘Add to widget’ button, and you will be able to see the image in the widget preview. Don’t forget to click on the save button to store your widget settings.

Image widget preview

Video Widget

New video widget in WordPess 4.8

Similar to the image widget, WordPress 4.8 also includes a video widget. It allows you to easily upload videos to the WordPress sidebar or display any video from YouTube, Vimeo, or any other oEmbed provider.

Note: we recommend that you should never upload videos to your WordPress site. Instead, you should use a video hosting provider like YouTube or Vimeo.

The video widget makes it super easy to embed videos from popular video hosting providers. You need to click on the ‘Add video’ button in the widget. This will bring up the media uploader popup.

Next, you need to click on the ‘Insert from URL’ and then paste the video URL. As soon as you paste the URL, WordPress will fetch the video thumbnail and display it.

Insert your video URL

Click on the ‘Add to widget’ button, and you will see the video thumbnail in the widget area. Don’t forget to click on the save button to store your widget settings.

Audio Widget

Audio widget in WordPress 4.8

Similar to the video and image widgets, Audio widget allows you to easily add audio files to your WordPress sidebar. Just click on the ‘Add audio’ button to upload your audio file.

The widget will nicely embed the audio file in a HTML5 audio player. It supports MP3, OGG, and WAV audio file formats.

Visual Editor in Text Widget

Text widget with visual and text editors in WordPress 4.8

Previously, the default text widget was just a plain text area where you needed to add your own HTML even for very basic formatting. WordPress 4.8 ships with the new and improved text widget with visual editor support.

It is the light version of the same visual editor that you use to write posts and pages. It contains buttons to make text bold or italic, add lists, and links. Advanced users can still switch to the text editor to write HTML manually.

Visual Editor Enhancements

Better link editing in WordPress 4.8

When using the visual editor to write posts, many beginners found it difficult to move the cursor away from the link. WordPress 4.8 fixed that issue and now users can just press right or left arrow keys to move the cursor away from a link.

WordPress News and Events Dashboard Widget

WordPress events and news widget

WordPress 4.8 also introduced the new ‘WordPress News and Events’ dashboard widget. It appears on the dashboard screen of your WordPress admin area and displays WordPress news as well as WordPress events near your location.

If you have multiple users on your site, then each user will see events near their own location. The widget automatically tries to guess user’s location by sending their IP address, timezone, and locale to api.wordpress.org. If you are using a VPN service, then you will see the events based on the sever location you are using.

You can also change the location manually to see events near you or from any other place in the world.

Under The Hood Changes

WordPress 4.8 brings some exciting changes for developers as well. Here are some of those under the hood improvements.

Changes in the editor API

A new api for TinyMCE editor to be dynamically instantiated via JS. (#35760)

Variable customizer width

If you have used live theme customizer on large screens, then you may have noticed that the sidebar looks too narrow. WordPress 4.8 makes the customizer sidebar width to be proportional to users screen size. (#32296)

User’s name prominently displayed on edit user screen

Since WordPress 4.8, edit user screen will now prominently display user’s name in the heading. (#28182)

Tag cloud widget will not use title tag

Previously tag cloud widget showed the number of posts filed under a tag in the title popover. The title tag in the code is now replaced with more accessible aria-label attribute. (#35566)

We hope this article offered you a good scope of what’s new in WordPress 4.8. We are particularly excited about the new media widgets. What are you excited about?

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What’s Coming in WordPress 4.8 (Features and Screenshots)

The schedule for WordPress 4.8 is released. It will be the first major WordPress release of 2017. We have been following the development closely, and we are excited to report that the final version is expected to be released around June 8, 2017. In this… Read More »

The post What’s Coming in WordPress 4.8 (Features and Screenshots) appeared first on WPBeginner.

The schedule for WordPress 4.8 is released. It will be the first major WordPress release of 2017. We have been following the development closely, and we are excited to report that the final version is expected to be released around June 8, 2017. In this article, we will show you what’s coming in WordPress 4.8 with features and screenshots.

What's coming in WordPress 4.8

Note: You can try out the beta version on your computer or on a staging environment by using the WordPress Beta Tester plugin.

The official beta release will happen on May 12th, which means no more new features will be added until the final release of WordPress 4.8. However, some of the features in beta may not make it into the final release.

Visual Editor in The Text Widget

By default WordPress comes with a plain text widget. This widget contains a simple text box where you can add text and HTML code.

Beginners who are not familiar with HTML were unable to add links or use basic formatting in the text widget. This will change in WordPress 4.8.

The new text widget comes with a simple visual and text editor. Similar to the one you see on the post edit screen.

New text widget in upcoming WordPress 4.8 with visual and text editor

This will allow beginner users to easily add links, create lists, or make text bold / italic without writing any HTML code.

The New Image Widget

Right now, if you want to display an image in WordPress sidebar, you will have to write HTML or use a plugin.

WordPress 4.8 will introduce an image widget which will allow users to easily add images into the sidebar. You will be able to upload an image right from the widget or select any image from the WordPress media library.

Image widget in upcoming WordPress 4.8

Clicking on the select image will open the WordPress media uploader popup where users can upload or select an image. After inserting the image, users will be able to see a preview of the image in the widget area.

Image widget preview

The New Video Widget

Similar to the image widget, WordPress 4.8 will also introduce the Video widget. It will allow users to easily upload videos to their sidebar or display any video from YouTube, Vimeo, or any other oEmbed provider.

New video widget in upcoming WordPress 4.8

Note: we recommend that you should never upload videos to your WordPress site. Instead, you should use a video hosting provider like YouTube or Vimeo. Simply click on the ‘Select Video’ button in the widget, and then click on ‘Insert from URL’ link.

Insert video URL inside Video widget

Add the URL of the video you want to embed and then click on the ‘Add to widget’ button. The media uploader popup will disappear, and you will see a thumbnail preview of your video inside the widget.

WordPress News and Events Dashboard Widget

WordPress 4.8 will also introduce the WordPress Events and News dashboard widget. It will appear on your WordPress dashboard page and will contain information about WordPress news as well as WordPress events near your location. It will replace the older WordPress news widget which only showed WordPress news.

WordPress news and events widget

If you have multiple users on your website, then the widget will show them events based on their location. It will automatically try to detect a user’s location by sending their timezone, locale, and IP address to api.wordpress.org.

Users can also edit the location to manually enter their location or view events from any other location.

Under The Hood Improvements

These updates improve significant parts of the WordPress core but are mainly intended for developers.

The customizer pane will now be proportionally sized on larger screens. #32296

User’s name prominently displayed on edit user screen. #28182

New function get_term_parents_list() will be introduced as taxonomy agnostic version of get_category_parents(). #17069

We hope this article helped you learn what’s coming in WordPress 4.8. Let us know which features you find exciting and what you would like to see in future releases of WordPress?

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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