New Features to Expect in WordPress 4.4

Posted on Jan 15 2016 by in Uncategorized 

Among the many different website creation tools and Content Management Systems, WordPress has gained quite a lot of popularity and a steady following over the years. Since its inception in 2001, it has become the most popularly used platform.

Different versions have been released during this time and like any other ideal product, it has gotten better. You would not want to use something unless you know it is going to give great output, right? Otherwise, you would just be wasting your time.

WordPress 4.4 just got released and just in time for the holidays. A great gift, wouldn’t you say? It has a couple of new features that both developers and general users will appreciate so don’t feel left out if you don’t know too much about coding. Take a tour of the newest version of WordPress before you make up your mind about whether to use it or not.

Top WordPress 4.4 Features

WordPress REST API is in Core

The REST API is now merged into core, with the infrastructure merged but without the endpoints. You will therefore need to replace all the admin-ajax.php items to be able to use the API in your theme or plugin. You will also need the plugin if you’re developing something that will use WordPress data externally or a mobile app.

Default theme known as 2016

Non-developers will appreciate the new default theme that comes with WordPress 4.4. It is quite minimalist but has a properly defined structure and awesome typeface. Imagine a theme that delivers what you need and is easy on the eyes too. No chaos on your screen. It only comes with WordPress 4.4 so you can download and activate the theme after you have the new WordPress version.

Images that are responsive

You know that images impact how a website is viewed and received by users. They may be the sole reason that people keep away from a particular website so having them as responsive as possible makes a huge difference. Developers will be happy to know that the images they use will not affect the responsiveness of their website. Users will be able to enjoy using websites without the annoying part where they have to wait forever for images to load.

WordPress 4.4 includes all image sizes under the srcset attribute. This means that the browser will select the best image to use. This will, in turn use much less bandwidth and increase website speeds. It has six new functions as well as two filters added to the srcset attribute that will enable all this.

Another image size, “medium-large”, has been added to the core. It will however not be listed in the User Interface and users will not be able to change it from settings. It has no height limitations but the width is 768 pixels. It will offer support for better responsiveness and developers will be able to change it with hooks.

It now provides oEmbed

Users have been able to use oEmbed on WordPress to add content from various other sources. WordPress 4.4 will now allow users to embed your content. This can be done by putting the URL of the article on a line of its own. You can also place it between <embed> tags.

Taxonomy roadmap

Terms now have metadata, just like users and posts. You can use ‘add_term_meta()’, ‘update_term_meta()’, ‘get_term_meta()’ and ‘delete_term_meta()’ to manage everything meta. A new table, wp_termmeta, has been introduced thus making terms and taxonomies much better.

Comment System Standardization

Comments have over the years become a little less important for many sites. Some websites still depend on such interaction for them to thrive though so they can’t be completely phased out. WordPress 4.4 has instead chosen to standardize the comment system. It now acts and looks more like the post system and this creates some much-needed order.

The comment query also has a number of new parameters that you may want to look at if you are an extensive comment user.

You may want to try the new WordPress 4.4 now that you know about all these new features; even if just to see what it really looks like and not to make a permanent move. Install the WordPress beta Tester plugin to do this easily. You will get the nightly version from the updates menu once you do this. Remember not to do this on a live site just in case something goes wrong.

Websites are made more successful by the different themes available. What visitors first see and then interact with will only make a difference if it is of good quality and something worth talking about. You could consider looking for a powerful theme to get your website going. It will get you more page views, better interaction with your clients and increased sales if your website deals with the sale of products.