WordPress 5.5 is moving forward to it’s planned release on August 11, 2020. This is a major release. It includes a major update to the Block Editor with lots of improvements and new features including inline image editing, block patterns, and the public block directory. There are also new capabilities for theme and plugin developers. There are also some major new WordPress “platform level” features including XML Sitemaps, auto-updates for themes and plugins, lazy-loading images, and the next wave of accessibility improvements. You will also now be able to update a plugin from a zip file.

As always, our team at Outcome Labs evaluates every major release of WordPress to identify if there will be any issues when we update our own sites and our client sites. Our target is to be able to update within 24 hours of a release becoming available. If you would like to do this, we recommend using the WordPress Beta Tester plugin with your local installation or a staging site. You should not use this on your live site. When you use this, you should select “Bleeding Edge Nighties” to update to the beta. The Beta Setting will be in your Tools menu after you install and activate the plugin. See the image below. Again, this is being updated daily by the core team, so you may see issues.

Wordpress Beta Tester Plugin Settings
WordPress Beta Tester Plugin Settings

If you are on an Outcome Labs WordPress Care Plan, you will automatically be updated to WordPress 5.5 once our team has validated there are no issues on your site. Our team will also be following up with you with recommendations on the best way to use new features on your site. As always, send any issues, questions or feedback to the Outcome Labs Helpdesk. If you are not currently on one of our Care Plans or need help upgrading to WordPress 5.5 or the Block Editor, please contact us!

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