WordPress 5.4 is scheduled to be released on March 31, 2020. It will be the first major release of the year and will ship with some significant improvements.
We’ve been following the development closely and testing the first beta to try out new features that are on the way.
WordPress 5.4 contains several new features that are mainly focused around block editor improvements. There are also some important changes for developers.
In this article, we will show you what’s coming in WordPress 5.4 with features and screenshots.
Note: You can try out the beta version on your computer or on a staging environment by using the WordPress Beta Tester plugin.
WordPress 5.4 is in the feature freeze stage of the development. This means new features will not be added, but existing new features can still change and may not make into the final release.
Having said that, let’s take a look at what’s coming in WordPress 5.4.
If you’d prefer written instructions, just keep reading.
The Block Editor Improvements
WordPress 5.4 is focused around improving the block editor by including new features and extending the existing blocks.
This is great news for content creators as they will now be able to do more with blocks inside the content editor.
The New Welcome Guide Modal
WordPress 5.4 will come with a new welcome guide popup to introduce new users with the block editor. It is a simple slide-show that explains blocks, points users to the block library, and a link to block editor tutorial.
You can also relaunch the guide by clicking on the three-dot menu on the top-right corner of the edit screen and then selecting Welcome Guide.
New Blocks in WordPress 5.4
WordPress 5.4 will also bring two new blocks to the library.
1. Social Icons Block
Social Icons block allows you to easily add links to social media profiles inside your WordPress posts and pages.
You can then add social media icons by clicking on the add button and adding an icon. You can also click on an icon to provide a link to your social media page.
Note: These social media icons just allow you to add links to your profiles. For social sharing, you would still need a WordPress social media plugin.
2. Buttons Block
The button block will be replaced by the buttons block. The new buttons block now allows you to add more than one button side by side.
You can choose from two different styles, use your own text and background colors, and add gradient background colors as well.
Block Improvements in WordPress 5.4
WordPress 5.4 will come with many improvements to the WordPress block editor as well as individual blocks. The following are some of the enhancements included in the beta.
More Color Options for Blocks
WordPress 5.4 will introduce more color options for the cover, group, and column blocks.
You can also choose background and text colors for all the blocks inside a group block.
Similarly, you’ll also be able to select background and text colors for the columns block.
Drag and Drop to Upload Featured Image
Currently, you cannot just drag and drop an image to set it as a featured image. WordPress 5.4 will allow users to simply drag and drop an image to the featured image section.
Change Text Color Inside Paragraph Block
Previously, you were only able to change text color for the entire paragraph block. With WordPress 5.4 users will be able to simply select any text inside a paragraph and change color.
Caption Below Table
Users will be able to add a caption below a table block.
Fixed Block Toolbar on Mobile
Currently, if you had to edit a blog post using a mobile device, then you’ll notice the toolbar move around blocks as you write.
WordPress 5.4 fixes this with a floating toolbar at the top which changes depending on the type of block you are currently editing.
Easily Select Gallery Image Size
WordPress 5.4 allows you to easily choose a size for all images in the gallery.
Improved Latest Posts Block
Coming with WordPress 5.4, users will be able to display featured images in the latest posts block.
Easily Select Blocks
WordPress 5.4 will include a select tool that will allow users to easily select a block that they want to change. This will come in handy when you have nested blocks like a group or columns.
The TikTok Embed Block
WordPress 5.4 will come with an embed block to easily add TikTok videos in your WordPress posts and pages.
Under The Hood Changes in WordPress 5.4
WordPress 5.4 will bring significant improvements for developers. The following are some of those under the hood changes.
WordPress 5.4 will change the HTML output for the Calendar widget. It moves the navigation links to a
<nav> HTML element right after the
<table> element in order to produce valid HTML. (#39763)
apply_shortcodes() function will be introduced as an alias to the
do_shortcode() function. (#37422)
Some unused customizer classes will be formally deprecated in WordPress 5.4. (#42364)
In WordPress 5.4, the Button component for WordPress admin area design has been enhanced with several changes and additions. (Details)
We hope this article helped you get a good idea of what’s coming in the WordPress 5.4 release. Let us know what features you find interesting and what you’d look to see in a future WordPress release.
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