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WordPress 4.6 - what's new?

5th September 2016

WordPress 4.6Codenamed after jazz musician Pepper Adams, WordPress 4.6 "Pepper" was released to the public a week or so ago, and many of you will now be using it. It is the second major WordPress release of 2016, and brings some exciting new features and fixes several glitches and bugs.

In this blog post, we will show you what’s new in WordPress 4.6 and which features can help you in the day-to-day management of your WordPress website or blog.

Native system fonts

WordPress started using Open Sans (which is a Google Font) as the default font so that the admin interface looked the same on various different platforms and devices. However, this meant a tiny compromise on speed and relying on a third party integration which can lead to increased loading times. Since 4.6 has released, WordPress will now use your native system font for the admin area. This will make the WordPress content management system load slightly faster and feel like your native device and/or platform.

This change only affects user interface elements inside WordPress admin area. It will not affect content areas like the post editor, nor will it affect your actual website which the public sees.

Less time to update plugins and themes

Prior to the 4.6 update, when you installed a plugin or theme from WordPress.org, it showed you a progress screen. This added to page load and increased the time spent on installing plugins and themes. WordPress 4.6 makes it faster to install and update your WordPress plugins and themes without leaving a page. Themes will also be using these faster updates.

Enhanced content editor

Every new version of WordPress brings improvements and new features to the post editor. WordPress 4.6 introduces some nifty new enhancements to the edit screen.

You can now highlight broken links in the Visual Editor

It's very likely that at some point, you will end up adding a broken link in a post or page on your WordPress site. If you publish the post, then that misspelled link goes live and the user who clicks on it won't get to the desired location.

Since 4.6, WordPress will now attempt to check for broken or poorly formatted links when you are using the Visual Editor. Hooray! If a link is broken, then it will highlight the linked anchor text with red dots, showing the link URL in red.

Improved auto-saving and recovery options

WordPress 4.6 comes with a better disaster recovery mode for the auto-save feature in the post/page editor. Prior to 4.6, when users disabled revisions, it affected restoring drafts from browser cache and autosave feature. This bug is now fixed and users will be able to easily restore posts from browser backups and autosave.

A better looking Import screen

It's incredibly easy to import content from various other platforms such as Blogger and Tumblr using the Import features that come with WordPress out of the box. WordPress 4.6 makes the import screen more readable and accessible.

It also uses 'shiny updates' to install importer plugins in the background. This means no more pop-up to install importer plugin and no extra page load to show you the progress. As mentioned above, this reduced loading times which is always a bonus.

Improvements to localization and translation

Translations from WordPress.org hosted community translations will now be given preference over the translations included with the plugin, and the jQuery UI date picker is now displayed with proper locale. Declension of comment numbers, and months in different languages are also now properly handled.

Have you installed the latest update yet? Let us know what your favourite feature is!