About 45 percent of WordPress sites are still running on 5.0 version or lower, even though upgrading to the latest version is recommended for security and performance purposes. Unfortunately, this may mean you’re missing out on new features that could make your job as a developer easier.
WordPress 5.3 was released on 12 November, 2019. This version includes a wide range of improvements, including a select few from which developers, in particular, stand to benefit.
In this post, we’ll take a look at what you can expect from WordPress 5.3, as well as six new features that you’ll likely find the most useful. Let’s get started!
An introduction to WordPress 5.3
Nicknamed “Kirk”, WordPress 5.3 has brought some major improvements that promise more intuitive use and better accessibility. Among the updates is a new default theme, titled Twenty Twenty:
The new theme was designed for increased flexibility. It provides the option of wide or full alignment, a centered content column, and a wide selection of layouts to choose from.
Also included in the theme is a brand new typeface titled Inter, which is marked by its clarity and readability. It was designed by Rasmus Andersson, and all weights and styles of the typeface are contained within two font files.
There are also a handful of enhancements to the Block Editor, including an option for creating group blocks:
The updates to the Block Editor styles include accessibility improvements to the admin interface. There is more color contrast for buttons and form fields as well as a Navigation mode.
Another major update is large-image handling to support bigger image sizes. WordPress 5.3 now lets you upload non-optimized, high-resolution pictures from your smartphone. The default threshold value is set to 2,560 pixels, although you can alter it with the big_image_size_threshold filter.
There is also an automatic image rotation feature. This means your media files will be turned upon upload according to their orientation data, minimising the need for editing in WordPress.
6 WordPress 5.3 features that benefit developers
In addition to the updates we covered above, there are some more changes in WordPress 5.3 that are particularly beneficial for developers. Let’s take a look at six features that may help make your job just a little easier.
1. New admin email address verification settings
The newest version of WordPress makes it mandatory to verify your admin email address periodically. This is the contact information where password reset notifications and other important messages are sent.
This update helps reduce the risk of missing future notifications and ensures the main admin contact information is valid. It also minimizes the risk of getting locked out of your site if you change your email address.
To update this email address, navigate to Settings > General:
This article was written by Will Morris and originally published on ManageWP.