WordPress 4.4 Released! Find Out What’s New

On December 8, 2015, WordPress Version 4.4, named for jazz musician Clifford Brown, was released to the public. It is available for download or update in your WordPress dashboard. New features in 4.4 make your site more connected and responsive. WordPress 4.4 as expected comes with a new default theme and some other great features. In this article, I will show you what’s new in WordPress 4.4, and which features you should try out after updating your websites.

Important! Don’t forget to create a complete WordPress backup before starting the update.

WordPress 4.4

Introducing Twenty Sixteen

In 2010, WordPress 3.0 came with a new default theme Twenty Ten. Since then, each year WordPress releases a new theme.

As the last release of 2015, WordPress 4.4 comes with a brand new Twenty Sixteen default theme. Here is how it looks:

Twenty Sixteen WordPress Theme

Twenty Sixteen is a modernized take on an ever-popular WordPress layout — the horizontal masthead with an optional right sidebar that works perfectly for blogs and websites. It has custom color options with beautiful default color schemes, a harmonious fluid grid using a mobile-first approach, and impeccable polish in every detail. Twenty Sixteen will make your WordPress look beautiful everywhere.

Responsive Images Out Of The Box

Responsive Image

WordPress now takes a smarter approach to displaying appropriate image sizes on any device, ensuring a perfect fit every time. You don’t need to do anything to your theme, it just works.

WordPress will load an appropriate image based on user’s device and screen size. This is done by adding native “srcset” and “sizes” support to WordPress.

The images that you upload will be automatically cropped to different sizes, and the user’s browser will serve an appropriate size.

Embed Everything

New Embeds Feature in WordPress 4.4

Now you can embed your posts on other WordPress sites. Simply drop a post URL into the editor and see an instant embed preview, complete with the title, excerpt, and featured image if you’ve set one. We’ll even include your site icon and links for comments and sharing.

In addition to post embeds, WordPress 4.4 also adds support for five new oEmbed providers: Cloudup, Reddit Comments, ReverbNation, Speaker Deck, and VideoPress.

Under The Hood Improvements

The best thing about WordPress is that it can be easily extended with plugins and has thousands of themes that you can use.

WordPress 4.4 brings some exciting changes and improvements for developers. This means that you can expect more features and updates from your favorite WordPress plugins.

  • REST API infrastructure

Infrastructure for the REST API has been integrated into core, marking a new era in developing with WordPress. The REST API gives developers an easy way to build and extend RESTful APIs on top of WordPress.

Infrastructure is the first part of a multi-stage rollout for the REST API. Inclusion of core endpoints is targeted for an upcoming release. To get a sneak peek of the core endpoints, and for more information on extending the REST API, check out the official WordPress REST API plugin.

  • WP_Network for Multisites

There are many under the hood improvements for multisite networks in WordPress 4.4. Most important one is the introduction of WP_Network class. It provides a better way to handle multisites and fixes several bugs. (#31985)

  • Term meta

Terms now support metadata, just like posts. See add_term_meta(), get_term_meta(), and update_term_meta() for more information.

  • Term, comment, and network objects

New WP_Term, WP_Comment, and WP_Network objects make interacting with terms, comments, and networks more predictable and intuitive in code.

  • Comment query improvements

Comment queries now have cache handling to improve performance. New arguments in WP_Comment_Query make crafting robust comment queries simpler.

Comment form output is now changed to display the comment textarea first and then name, email, and URL fields. (#29974)

WordPress 4.4 Comment Box

I hope this article gave you a good overview of what’s new in WordPress 4.4. I am particularly excited about responsive images, improved embeds and the change in comment box. What are you excited about?

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FraNK UMEADI

FraNK UMEADI, FraNKAPP as he is fondly called, is the CEO, FraNKAPPWeb Technologies, an IT company aimed at delivering excellent services such as Bulk SMS, Web Application Development, Software Development, Mobile Application Development, Digital Marketing, and IT Training etc. He is a Professional Blogger (Founder / Owner of FraNKAPPTech.com), System Analyst and Programmer that writes in PHP, Java, and C#. Phone: +2348066017971 , or +2349023819269. E-mail: franksomitex@gmail.com , frank.umeadi@frankappweb.com

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