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What to Expect from WordPress 4.6

WordPress’ next major release, on July 27th, will be version 4.6 of WordPress Beta 4. Here are some of the anticipated features:

Shiny Updates Plug-in

Whenever we install, update or delete plugins or themes, we usually see a progress screen which is nothing more than an overhead in the form of an extra page.

WordPress is introducing shiny updates plug-in in its upcoming version 4.6, which will prevent users from being redirected to another screen during the download process. The plug-in will be installed on the same screen allowing the admin with an option to activate it then and there.

Native System Fonts for Admins

WordPress was using Open Sans (from Google Fonts), to give a consistent look on each and every platform and devices. However, WordPress had to rely on a third party service to achieve this. In turn it was affecting the load time on the WordPress admin panel.

The WordPress team decided to move back to native system fonts on the admin panel. The same panel on which the operating system of the WordPress admin panel was based. This will reduce the third party call and will help in decreasing the load time for admin panel. Here are the list of fonts that will be used on each platform:

  1. apple-system font for Safari and FireFox on macOS and iOS
  2. Helvetica Neue for macOS prior to version 10.11
  3. BlinkMacSystemFont for Google Chrome on macOS
  4. Segoe UI on Windows
  5. Roboto for Chrome OS and Android
  6. Oxygen-Sans for KDE
  7. Ubuntu for Ubuntu
  8. Cantarell for GNOME
  9. sans-serif will be used as a fallback

WordPress Post Editor – Improvements

WordPress 4.6 also has some improvements in post editor as follows:

Updated Autosave Feature

Prior to WordPress 4.6, whenever post revisions were disabled, the autosave feature was also affected. It will be resolved in the version to be launched. This way if revisions are disabled, the autosave feature will restore the post content from browser backups.

Highlighting Broken Links

Additionally, while using the visual editor, all the broken links will be highlighted. Whenever you add a link, WordPress will analyze the link immediately and if that particular link seems to be bad, it will be highlighted in red when hovered over.

Under the Hood – Improvements

For developers, WordPress 4.6 is introducing some exciting new features to its core thus improving significant parts.

Standardized Meta Registration

WordPress 4.6 is introducing a standardized function register_meta() for the registration of meta keys. It will work on the same link using register_post_type() function which will give plugin and theme developers, a standardized way to register their meta keys with different post types, comments, or terms objects – in short, wherever meta data is used.

WP_Post_Type Class

Also, WordPress 4.6 is introducing new class WP_Post_Types. It will change the $wp_post_type array to an array of WP_Post_Type objects, which will provide the methods to handle:

  1. Post type support
  2. Rewrite rules
  3. Hooks
  4. Meta boxes
  5. Taxonomies
WP_Term_Query Class

Like WP_Query, WP_User_Query and WP_Comment_Query classes, WordPress 4.6 will provide WP_Term_Query class for a better structure to generate term queries.

WP_Site_Query and WP_Network_Query

For multisite networks, WP_Site_Query and WP_Network_Query classes will provide methods to query sites and networks with lazy loading respectively.

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