Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.
In this week’s News Drop, Doc breaks down some of the big things we can expect to see in WordPress in 2018 as well as his predictions.
Love WordPress but hate reading? My name is Doc and this is Doc Pop’s News Drop!
Happy New Year!
2017 was a great year for WordPress, with a few BIG Core releases and an even larger market share of sites that use it a content management system.
In this week’s News Drop we are going to talk about the big trends and changes for WordPress in 2018.
Much like the WordPress REST API was the big talk of 2016, Gutenberg will dominate most of our conversations in 2018. The Gutenberg Editor aims to give WordPress users a more modern and user-friendly interface for editing posts.
The demos look great so far, but still many developers and users are worried about what the changes mean for the future of WordPress and whether or not Gutenberg will break existing themes and plugins.
My guess is: probably not. The team has been working really hard on this project for quite some time and we should finally see it roll out in a couple of months.
Aside from Gutenberg, I predict we’ll see a number of other BIG changes to the existing WordPress editors.
Specifically: real-time collaboritive editing added to WordPress core [blow horns & party favors] Currently this feature exists, but only for WordPress.com’s sites with Jetpack installed, but I’m hoping we’ll see it as a broader release sometime this year.
We also had some new Customizer features added to Core last year which I think would be great to see added to the editor in 2018. Specifically the ability to share preview links and schedule changes to a post.
Security is always a big subject for WordPress. Last year we saw a rise in popular plugins being acquired by new developers who then hid malicious code in them. These trusted plugins still LOOKED like normal, but provided a backdoor for the new plugin maintaners. These type of hack is known as a “supply chain attack”.
We already have decent auditing before any plugin hits the plugin directory, but I think 2018 is going to be the year we see even stricter checks to existing plugins. Particularly whenever a new maintaner takes over an existing plugin.
This year we should also see the influence of Tide, a new open source project that uses a series of automated tests to check every plugin for PHP compatibility and test for errors in the directory. Hopefully Tide will also help find hidden backdoors in plugins as well.
And finally, I know that every year we predict that websites will design for mobile first, but this year we really mean it. 2017 was the first year in which mobile traffic continuously beat desktop computers as the main Internet device worldwide.
But the real game changer is going to be when google launches it’s Mobile-First Index, which is expected later this year. Supposedly this won’t affect google’s ranking algorythm, but I think most sites wont take that risk.
Many designers have already been working on responsive design that should work for both mobile and web, but I think 2018 is going to be the year that many sites will design primarily for mobile, with desktop being a secondary concern.
Whooo, that was a long roundup.
That’s it for this week’s News Drop, what are your predictions for WordPress in 2018? Let us know in the comments below and thanks for subscribing!