WordPress 5.8 is being released today (on the 20th of July 2021). It is the second major release of the annual release cycle. As expected, this new version brings all further improvements and newer features. Some of these improvements and features are quite noticeable, while others are under the hood minor changes.
If you are one of the WordPress users and are confused about the new major software release. Don’t worry. We have got you covered with this article. In this article, we are going to show you what new features and improvements WordPress 5.8 is bringing.
Brand new Template Editor
All new WordPress 5.8 comes with a brand-new template editor. This template editor takes the full website editing to a whole another level. With this new feature, we are moving towards a full site editing tool with the help of a block editor. Therefore, it is only going to get better with future releases.
This new template editor allows users to create and save templates of their WordPress sites, and these templates can later be used for posts and pages. The new template editor also introduces the addition of site editing blocks to your templates. These blocks include:
- Site Title
- Site Tagline
- Site Logo
- Post Tile
- Post Date
- Post Content
- Query Loop
- Post Tags
- Login and Logout
- Post Featured Image
If you are not a fan of this new feature, you will be glad to hear that this new feature is optional and can easily be disabled by theme developers and users. However, the template editor is still dependent on the WordPress theme and carries the same style as your WordPress theme.
Blocks can now be used as widgets
Another big feature coming with the WordPress 5.8 is the use of blocks as widgets. With this, users will now be able to experience the all-new widgets interface by using the Customizer or accessing Appearance -> Widgets page.
This blocks as widgets feature bring the flexibility of the block editor to the WordPress sidebar widgets. With this, you can use typography, color, spacing, and other related design tools without the need for any additional plugins.
However, if you are not ready to embrace the change, you can turn off this feature with the help of the Classic Widgets plugin until you change your mind.
Support for WebP Images
WordPress 5.8 brings support for WebP image format. The Earlier versions don’t support WebP images, and if the user tries to upload a WebP image, he has to face an error.
WebP is a new image format used on the web due to its 25% to 34% smaller size than JPEG and PNG without compromising quality. WordPress 5.8 allows users to upload WebP images to their WordPress websites without using any additional plugins.
However, there is still a small drawback. If users of your website have an unsupported browser, the WebP image will not be automatically replaced by a JPEG or PNG. Therefore, you still might consider using an image compression plugin.
The block editor is a crucial area where users spend most of their time creating their WordPress sites. Therefore, each new WordPress release tries to fix and improve the block editor.
Here are some editor improvements that are coming with the new WordPress 5.8:
- Users now can easily select a parent block in nested blocks.
- With new WordPress 5.8, users have a new and improved list view panel that shows the complete list of blocks on posts or pages. It is beneficial when trying to move to a specific block in complex layouts.
- WordPress 5.8 now features a more improved and optimized block highlighting.
- Introduction of all-new Duotone filters for galleries, images, and cover images.
- More color options for text, background, and link colors, and gradient backgrounds for table block.
- Brand new option to adjust padding among different columns.
- Pattern Suggestions in Add Block Panel
With the release of WordPress 5.8, we have gotten one step closer to Full Site Editing. But the second annual major release has brought much more than the Full Site Editing. There are tons of improvements in the block editor, new Duotone filters, WebP support, and much more.
You can go to the WordPress 5.8 Development Cycle if you want to learn more about the 5.8 Version or look at the Evolution of WordPress if you are interested in knowing how WordPress evolved over the years.