New WordPress Version 4.6 referred as “Pepper” after the famous jazz baritone saxophonist Park Frederick “Pepper” Adams III has just been launched is already available for the users to update from their WordPress dashboard. As per the company, the new update is enriched with features to focus on the important things while always offering an easy feeling.
How to Update to WordPress 4.6?
Updating the new WordPress version is as easy as updating to other WordPress versions. A notification would appear just under the update showing that this latest version of WordPress is available. All you need to do is to navigate to Updates and then click on Update Now allowing the update process to start. As soon as the update process is complete a welcome screen would appear.
What is New in WordPress 4.6?
Let us begin with the major WordPress features first followed by the background improvements. The new cute gray avatar in place of the boring gray box is a good way to welcome users with new look and feel. The second and most obvious eye catcher is obviously the new WordPress font. Well, let us explain the features now one by one.
New Native Fonts
The Open Sans font has been the commonest thing one can call to mind when thinking of WordPress admin area, right? Well, WordPress 4.6 is all set to make a difference to this. In the new version, you have native system fonts. Naturally, as per the system in use WordPress dashboard experience, at least look-wise may vary now.
Do you have any clue, why WordPress decided to switch to native fonts? Obviously, performance is a big reason since through system-specific the dependence on third party font like Open Sans can be avoided completely. Secondly, using System-UI fonts became now a convention across the platforms and WordPress with this update was looking to deliver a new feel, at least font-wise.
Two Major Improvements in WordPress Editor
Except introducing the system font UI WordPress 4.6 has come up with two major improvements in the WordPress editor, namely, auto-save enhancement and detector of broken links. Let us have a look at these improvements.
Enhanced auto-save: WordPress editor offers an autosave feature that automatically saves unsaved elements approximately in every 15 seconds. WordPress 4.6 took this feature one step forward by refurbishing the recovery feature as more user-friendly. Even when you refresh a page without saving, the notice that would appear offering you to restore the page will be more user-friendly. Moreover, this feature will work even in times when revisions are disabled. So, the end result is even accidentally you cannot lose any unsaved data, even after the revision of a document.
A broken link detector feature: The new WordPress version has come loaded with a new broken link detector. If while using WordPress if you are editing or writing a document through Visual Editor, WordPress will let you know if the document includes a broken link. By detecting broken links WordPress will mark them in red. For detecting the link quality, WordPress will send HTTP request and if the response from the link come as 403/404, it will be flagged by WordPress as a bad link and consequently will be highlighted in red.
Updating and Installing Plugins and Themes Became Better
In the new version, the experience of updating and installing plugins and themes became better. Instead of loading and refreshing the page, the new version allows updating and installing without needing to leave the page. Moreover, a new animation is added to show that the theme installation from WordPress.org directory is in progress. Referred as Shiny Updates v2, this new update methodology will make updating faster and intuitive.
An Enhanced Look in Import Screen
We all know about the exceptional ease WordPress provides in importing contents from other platforms just by using the importer plugins at Tools » Import section. Well, the new version makes this importing further easier. Moreover, while installing importer plugins the Shiny Update feature will facilitate it in the background without needing any install pop-up.
Improved Localization and Translation
The new update will have useful aspects in regard to translating a page. WordPress.org community hosted translations will be more preferred than the common translations of the plugin. This will eliminate the chances of bad user experience because of faulty translations in the plugin page.
WordPress 4.6 is not only about offering an improved look and feel but is equally about enhanced performance. To ensure optimum performance and speed for the millions of websites and blogs running on this platform, the new update has come up with a host of upgraded elements. Let us have a look at them.
- WordPress 4.6version allowed standardizing metadata registration with the introduction of a function called register_meta() function.
- New WP_Site_Query and WP_Network_Query classes have also been added. This will help WordPress developers to offer lazy loading feature when building query sites and networks. As lazy loading helps faster page loading speed, this would be a significant improvement for such sites.
- The new version will be better equipped to handle parallel HTTP requests with a new library for this.
Other Improvements Behind the Scene
WordPress 4.6 besides the so-called visible features has come loaded with a lot of refurbished and enhanced elements for the developers. Let us have a look at the various developer-friendly enhancements offered by this new version.
- Resource Hints: Resource hints refer to a new W3C specification that helps web browser connecting and fetching resources in advance leading to enhanced performance and speed.
- Improved Meta Registration: WordPress 4.6 offersregister_meta() function which helps to work with metadata in a standardized way through the registration of meta keys.
- Persistent Comment Cache: WordPress 4.6 is all equipped to cache comments as the persistent types of objects. This allows simultaneous and almost concurrent changes in comments as and when validated, updated or changed.
- WP_Post_Type Class: WordPress 4.6 offering newWP_Post_Type class allows handling a variety of post types with different methods, rewrite rules, meta boxes, etc.
- WP_Term_Query Class: The new version comes loaded with WP_Term_Query class allowing an enhanced structure to produce term queries.
The new update in spite of having too many handy enhancements seems to have nothing as mind blowing. But it has been a long time since we had any major WordPress update with so many enhancements.
Darshan Patel is a lead Search Engine Analyst & Storyteller at Nimblechapps – The coolest web app development company. He believe in using a variety of strategy to create business’s online presence that delight and deliver.