Trusted WordPress tutorials, when you need them most.
Beginner’s Guide to WordPress
25 Million+
Websites using our plugins
Years of WordPress experience
WordPress tutorials
by experts

What Features are Coming in WordPress 3.6

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on WPBeginner. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations. Learn more about Editorial Process.

It was just a few months ago when WordPress 3.5 was released (December 11, 2012 to be exact). Well, the next major release, WordPress 3.6, is already underway. WordPress 3.6 is expected to be released in late April 2013. We have been following the developments of WordPress 3.6 and decided to share with you what features to look forward to. In this article, we will discuss what features are coming in WordPress 3.6.

Better Editorial Controls

WordPress 3.6 will be a great update particularly for bloggers and content publishers. It is focused on post edit area, providing better tools and support to improve the editorial process of creating content with WordPress.

Post Lock

WordPress 3.6 will have an editorial control feature, called post lock. This will allow website administrators and authors to lock a post so that other users can not work on the same post until it is unlocked. If the other user has the rights to edit a post, then they will be prompted to either go back or take over. This is a very neat feature for blogs with multiple authors.

Post Lock in WordPress 3.6

Improved Autosave

WordPress 3.6 will be focused on content editing, so the auto-save feature will see some great improvements. There are talks about saving unsaved changes in browser’s local storage. This will be very helpful because it will prevent you from losing posts due to expired cookies, loss of internet connection, inadvertent navigation, plugin or core errors on save, browser crashes, OS crashes, cats walking on keyboard, etc. If any of those happen, you would be able to resume editing exactly where you left it.

Local Backups for Revisions

The goal is to get people to trust WordPress with their posts. The autosave feature was introduced for this vary reason because people were afraid of losing their work. This is the reason why many use third-party applications like Windows Live Writer to write their WordPress posts. The hope is that by enhancing the auto-save feature, many users will begin to trust the WordPress autosave capabilities.

Better Handling of Post Revisions

Post Revisions will now reflect the changes between different versions. Changes will be highlighted with colors and visual elements, so you will be able to quickly notice the difference between them.

Compare Post Revisions UI

Editorial Workflow

There were talks of integrating one of the best editorial workflow plugin into core. However due to time constraints, this feature will not be added in WordPress 3.6. The efforts weren’t wasted because it brought to surface many challenges involved in the process. This will allow the core team to prepare in advance for next release. (See Mark Jaquith’s Explanation). Well nothing to worry about. You can still use Edit Flow plugin (we’re using it).

New and Improved UI for Post Formats

As you know that WordPress has support for Post Formats and custom post formats. However, the old interface was not very noticeable. In WordPress 3.6, there will be a new user interface for post formats. Users will be able to choose and switch between post formats, and the edit area will change based on the post format. Inspiration for these changes comes from Alex King’s post format UI plugin, we showed you earlier how to install Post Format UI Plugin in WordPress 3.5. Folks are submitting ideas and wireframes as to what Post Formats UI should look like. Below is a mockup submitted by Mel Choyce:

Post Formats UI Mockup

Twenty Thirteen

WordPress 3.6 will also come with Twenty Thirteen, the new default WordPress theme. Twenty Thirteen will have great support for post formats. Unlike previous WordPress default themes, Twenty Thirteen will be using lots of bold colors. It will use different background color for each post which looks great when a user scroll downs the page. Twenty Thirteen will be fully responsive and will look equally great on different screen sizes, resolutions, and devices. See the live demo.

Twenty Thirteen Demo Screenshot

A New GUI for WordPress Menus

The WordPress Menu editor will also get a new and more intuitive user interface. At WPBeginner, we noticed that a lot of WordPress beginners don’t understand the menu system. The tabs, menu drop down, choosing multiple menus and switching between them is trivial to most new users. Hopefully this will change in WordPress 3.6, and it will become easier to create and manage Menus in WordPress.

Improved Login Notifications

Sometimes a user session expires right in the middle of something important. The new login notification system will ask a user to login without leaving the page they were working on.

Improved Login Notifications - WordPress 3.6

There is still some time left in the release of WordPress 3.6. This is a major release so apart from these new features, there will be several improvements to the core code, bug fixes, security updates, etc. Remember you can always submit your ideas for WordPress, the highest voted ideas will be included in upcoming versions of WordPress. What new features you would like to see in WordPress? What’s your favorite feature of this WordPress 3.6 release? Let us know in the comments below.

Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. See how WPBeginner is funded, why it matters, and how you can support us. Here's our editorial process.

Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

The Ultimate WordPress Toolkit

Get FREE access to our toolkit - a collection of WordPress related products and resources that every professional should have!

Reader Interactions

41 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

    Hey WPBeginner readers,
    Did you know you can win exciting prizes by commenting on WPBeginner?
    Every month, our top blog commenters will win HUGE rewards, including premium WordPress plugin licenses and cash prizes.
    You can get more details about the contest from here.
    Start sharing your thoughts below to stand a chance to win!

  2. Shailan says

    I think WordPress Staff is doing a great job. I hope they can make it more user friendly in the next release. Not all wordpress users are programmers, you know.

  3. Marian Pena says

    As a new user to WordPress, I’m actually impressed already with the speed in which it loads. I have been a solid Joomla user for the last 8 years or so and until I had a problem in my own site yesterday, I had never tried WordPress, but decided while I wait for host to fix problem that I’d give it a go. Within an hour, I notified host not to bother, because I was switching CMS. However, as a 1 person admin site, I can honestly say that Lock Post does me no good, since I’m the only person who’s going to write my site, but for sites such as this one where there are probably several authors I can see it’s value.

    The auto save feature from what I saw of it works just fine, so I’m not understanding the reasons for it’s improvement, but at the same time, being new, I wouldn’t know that either.

    As a new user, I did find the menu/navigation a bit confusing, between understandind the difference between Pages and Categories, but as an experienced Joomla user and html user, I caught on quickly. I can see where newbies would get confused by it however.

    The biggest improvement tho that I’d like to see is like the “newspaper” guy who noted about the media library area. The fact that we can’t add our own folders or subfolders and need to rely on WP to do this for us based on a monthly folder system is disconcerning. Let’s say your a recipe site where you have tons of images, if your just starting to build your site, you could end up with 30k in images for your first week or month of work and they are all in that one folder. I’d rather be able to folderize my images in my own manner and in a way that I recognize when I’m looking at the backups on my hard drive or if I have to find something down the road.

    Now, I’m off to find a replacement for feedburner and hopefully I will find one. I don’t really want a newsleeter, I just want something that will automatically allow my visitors to get updates much in the same feedburner works. Hearing that it might be closing was sad news, since I’d just figured it out a few days ago.

  4. John says

    Some extra post-types “out of the box” would be a nice addition. Just having the option of posts & pages can sometimes be a bit limiting, and creating custom post types, custom taxonomies and metaboxes can be a pain.

  5. StephenB says

    How many sites will need/use the ‘multi-user’ features is debatable. A significant proportion are never going to need them.

    Post-formats looks interesting. I assume the loop will be able to display them easily.

    But stop adding bits and start sorting the core. Taxonomy meta data is an essential. No use implementing all the cms goodies of custom post-types & taxonomies if they can’t be used properly. Post meta and user meta is there… why they didn’t add the tax_meta table is frustrating. There’s a Trac for this with plenty of recognised power-users pleading for it!

  6. Chris Howard says

    What WP desperately needs is better image management. Categories and tags, to begin with. I’m working for a newspaper site at the moment and the Media Library quickly fills with images. When you want the user to re-use one – e.g. a stock image of a politician or corporate logo – it’s pain for them to locate.

  7. Keith Davis says

    Thanks for the review guys
    I love the WordPress custom menus interface.
    Watched a video and then it was easy to use.

    Obviuosly because of security, we have to upgrade but the one click upgrade is pretty painless.
    Am I tempting fate saying that?

  8. Robert Wilkins says

    Thanks for the post! Auto lock looks promising but I agree with some of the other posters here, I don’t believe they really improved some of the items that needed improving. The visual editor, tinyMCE is horrible still. I have so many complaints from customers with this. On the tinyMCE site, the editor works flawlessly, it’s buggy in WP and broken with new version of Chrome.

    Autosave is no big deal. I usually deactivate this on all my sites. WordPress is an awesome publishing platform but it’s getting bloated. It would be nice if automatic feeds aren’t optional or turned off. All that does is add size to the database.

    I look forward to each release, but as Ryan Hellyer said, I keep hoping they make it better by reducing and optimizing rather than adding.

    • Hugh Sands says

      I agree with you. It’s curious why so many software that become succesful follows the same path: ignoring bugs, avoiding optimizations, … getting into the bells and whistles run

      When we’ll see many-to-many relationship integrated in the core or Ajax support improvements, specially performance?

      Autosave/Revisions are overestimated IMHO

  9. Sandra says

    These sound great, but I keep hoping they’ll do something to better organize the area in the dashboard that lists pages and posts.

    A folder system instead of just indented subpages, for example, would be really helpful with large sites. That’s used in a number of commercial CMS platforms and it keeps things much better organized.

  10. Andor Nagy says

    WoW, Just wow. It’s unbelievable what these guys can come up with. I’m so exited about the new Post formats and stuff. The new theme looks amazing, but where did the sidebar go? :D
    Also they’d really need to change how comments.php for themes works. It’s a nightmare to work with it D:

  11. Gautam Doddamani says

    oooh twenty thirteen looks awesome..i had heard about post lock a while back, a very interesting feature indeed! i have already controlled my post revisions to be maximum at 2 for every post…really thought editorial flow would come in wp 3.6 as well, hmm i guess they will introduce it later…i am really excited, mostly because a more new and nice gui has been given for the post editor :)


  12. Matt Rittman says

    How about fixing the issue of not being able to link images to “file”? I always have to manually edit this in code view, otherwise it links to the post.

    • conualfy says

      I guess you are talking about inserting galleries. You can change the box from File to Attachment and back to File. This is the way I make it work until they fix the javascript.

  13. Rajesh Magar says

    Thanks Syed,

    This is really great news that WordPress most popular theme is going to come with “Responsive Design” functionality.

  14. Chris says

    Instead of Automatic Inc, investing 1.2 Million Dollars in and the EverCache system (Which really isn’t that great), they should have used the money to fix WordPress..

    • Editorial Staff says

      Ummm why? Automattic is a separate entity created for profit. WordPress is a non-profit open source project. Anyone can contribute and make it better. Perhaps you should stop making money and contributing full-time to make WordPress better or in your own words “fix it”???


  15. M Asif Rahman says

    Thanks for the update. Nice timely post. I understand the cause of dropping Edit Flow from 3.6 core. But with Post lock and Improved Auto save maybe future version like 3.7 will come up with advance Editorial Flow control.

  16. Aaron says

    I am very excited to see the additions! I can’t wait to see what the new post formats ui looks like!

  17. Harley says

    I hated 3.5. Still do and regrets upgrading to it and despises the new media uploader. I always TURN off post revisions and hopes in 3.6 one still can.
    What you NEED to fix is the way WP always messes with any custom HTML if switched back to VISUAL mode.
    WordPress is really beginning to become bloated and intrusive, If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

    • Editorial Staff says

      If the formatting troubles you, then you can always disable them.

      remove_filter('the_content', 'wptexturize');
      remove_filter('the_excerpt', 'wptexturize');
      remove_filter('comment_text', 'wptexturize');
      remove_filter('the_title', 'wptexturize');

      Yes, you can always turn off revisions, but we find them to be very useful.


  18. Ajay says

    I switched from WLW to WordPress’ editting interface because of its media manager back in 3.4 which just got better with 3.5.

    WLW just didn’t give me the flexibility for managing images. And, worst of all it doesn’t work on a Mac

  19. Ryan Hellyer says

    My favourite feature is the lack of features. This release seems to be concentrating more on improving what is there rather than adding more junk to the trunk.

Leave A Reply

Thanks for choosing to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated according to our comment policy, and your email address will NOT be published. Please Do NOT use keywords in the name field. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.