Web Trends: The Launch of WordPress 4.8

For WordPress users who have been counting down the days to the launch of WordPress 4.8, your wait has finally come to an end. WordPress 4.8 has been launched this June, the official update to the WordPress 4.7 base version. If you’re left feeling disappointed to see no jaw-dropping visual changes, hold tight and take a closer look as there are several smaller modifications that could come in handy to current WordPress users or developers. Changes include a few front-end extras, some snazzy new widgets and a couple of fancy new features to the WordPress Editor.

New Widgets and Improvements

The biggest changes seen in WordPress 4.8 are improvements to existing widgets topped with a handful of new media widgets. While not major updates, these changes will enable users to upload visual and audio media with ease.

The Image Widget

First up is the new Image Widget. Prior to the update, inserting an image would mean dragging across a Text Widget and adding an HTML link to your image. The new version, however, now enables you to directly upload images. Simply drag the widget over as before, but this time you can access the option of directly uploading a new image or selecting one from your media library. Add an image title and you’re all set. Only downfall is the widget doesn’t yet allow you to add an entire image gallery, only single images.

The Audio Widget

This new little widget works in the same way as the image widget, but instead allows you to add audio files with the click of a button. Currently you can upload tracks from a URL or upload from your media library. Once complete, the widget will show as playable audio content on your website.

The Video Widget

Once again, the Video Widget works in exactly the same way as the previous two widgets, except this time directly uploads video content directly to your web page. You can insert video files again straight from your media library or a URL to external video links from Vimeo, YouTube and so on.

Rich Text Editing for Text Widgets

More of an improvement to an existing widget than a new one, however an extremely handy one. No more are the days of having to add HTML to a text widget to style font. The editor inside the text widget will now enable you to be able to create bold or italicised text, add bullet points and lists and insert media files.

For Developers

– Changes to CSS rules making admin panel headings more convenient
– A brand-new JavaScript API enabling developers to observe the TinyMCE text editor once a page has loaded. The editor can also be added to all text areas
– A brand-new widget REST API schema allowing for greater improvements and new possibilities for current media widgets to soon be able to have extras such as playlists, image galleries and so on

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