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What’s Coming in WordPress 5.4 (Features and Screenshots)

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WordPress 5.4 is scheduled to be released on March 31, 2020. It will be the first major release of the year and will ship with some significant improvements.

We’ve been following the development closely and testing the first beta to try out new features that are on the way.

WordPress 5.4 contains several new features that are mainly focused around block editor improvements. There are also some important changes for developers.

In this article, we will show you what’s coming in WordPress 5.4 with features and screenshots.

What's coming in WordPress 5.4

Note: You can try out the beta version on your computer or on a staging environment by using the WordPress Beta Tester plugin.

WordPress 5.4 is in the feature freeze stage of the development. This means new features will not be added, but existing new features can still change and may not make into the final release.

Having said that, let’s take a look at what’s coming in WordPress 5.4.

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The Block Editor Improvements

WordPress 5.4 is focused around improving the block editor by including new features and extending the existing blocks.

This is great news for content creators as they will now be able to do more with blocks inside the content editor.

The New Welcome Guide Modal

WordPress 5.4 will come with a new welcome guide popup to introduce new users with the block editor. It is a simple slide-show that explains blocks, points users to the block library, and a link to block editor tutorial.

Welcome modal in WordPress 5.4

You can also relaunch the guide by clicking on the three-dot menu on the top-right corner of the edit screen and then selecting Welcome Guide.

Welcome guide menu

New Blocks in WordPress 5.4

WordPress 5.4 will also bring two new blocks to the library.

1. Social Icons Block

Social Icons block allows you to easily add links to social media profiles inside your WordPress posts and pages.

Adding social icons block

You can then add social media icons by clicking on the add button and adding an icon. You can also click on an icon to provide a link to your social media page.

Add a social media site to social icons block

Note: These social media icons just allow you to add links to your profiles. For social sharing, you would still need a WordPress social media plugin.

2. Buttons Block

The button block will be replaced by the buttons block. The new buttons block now allows you to add more than one button side by side.

Buttons group

You can choose from two different styles, use your own text and background colors, and add gradient background colors as well.

Block Improvements in WordPress 5.4

WordPress 5.4 will come with many improvements to the WordPress block editor as well as individual blocks. The following are some of the enhancements included in the beta.

More Color Options for Blocks

WordPress 5.4 will introduce more color options for the cover, group, and column blocks.

Cover block colors

You can also choose background and text colors for all the blocks inside a group block.

Group color settings

Similarly, you’ll also be able to select background and text colors for the columns block.

Color options for the columns block

Drag and Drop to Upload Featured Image

Currently, you cannot just drag and drop an image to set it as a featured image. WordPress 5.4 will allow users to simply drag and drop an image to the featured image section.

Drag and drop featured image

Change Text Color Inside Paragraph Block

Previously, you were only able to change text color for the entire paragraph block. With WordPress 5.4 users will be able to simply select any text inside a paragraph and change color.

Select text color in the paragraph block

Caption Below Table

Users will be able to add a caption below a table block.

Table captions

Fixed Block Toolbar on Mobile

Currently, if you had to edit a blog post using a mobile device, then you’ll notice the toolbar move around blocks as you write.

WordPress 5.4 fixes this with a floating toolbar at the top which changes depending on the type of block you are currently editing.

Block toolbar on mobile screens

Easily Select Gallery Image Size

WordPress 5.4 allows you to easily choose a size for all images in the gallery.

Gallery image sizes

Improved Latest Posts Block

Coming with WordPress 5.4, users will be able to display featured images in the latest posts block.

Latest posts block in WordPress 5.4

Easily Select Blocks

WordPress 5.4 will include a select tool that will allow users to easily select a block that they want to change. This will come in handy when you have nested blocks like a group or columns.

Select block tool

The TikTok Embed Block

WordPress 5.4 will come with an embed block to easily add TikTok videos in your WordPress posts and pages.

TikTok embed block in WordPress 5.4

Under The Hood Changes in WordPress 5.4

WordPress 5.4 will bring significant improvements for developers. The following are some of those under the hood changes.

WordPress 5.4 will change the HTML output for the Calendar widget. It moves the navigation links to a <nav> HTML element right after the <table> element in order to produce valid HTML. (#39763)

A new apply_shortcodes() function will be introduced as an alias to the do_shortcode() function. (#37422)

Some unused customizer classes will be formally deprecated in WordPress 5.4. (#42364)

In WordPress 5.4, the Button component for WordPress admin area design has been enhanced with several changes and additions. (Details)

We hope this article helped you get a good idea of what’s coming in the WordPress 5.4 release. Let us know what features you find interesting and what you’d look to see in a future WordPress release.

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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.

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Reader Interactions

47 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.
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    • WPBeginner Support says

      If you mean the default category, you should be able to do so under Settings>Writing


  2. Mike Estela says

    I’m so glad that they are focusing on the block editor. I especially love the new text color feature. Very informational article! Thank you!

  3. Amit Mandal says

    I like all of them.

    Specially I love 3 features…
    1. Text color,
    2. Social follow icons… It will be best if they include social share…. May be in the next update,
    3. Recent Post with featured image…. This feature just make my day.

    Very good article and thank you for letting us know about all of them.

  4. Cosmin Șerban says

    I really like the new fixed mobile menu. At last, I can do some changes to my articles from my smartphone.

    Thank you for the heads up!

  5. Susan Pearson says

    I can already do one or two of these via plugins but it is always better to have native performance. The change of text colour within the paragraph is very welcome. It astounded me that this wasn’t available in the first version of blocks. The drag and drop featured image is one of those things that seems tiny but will become a welcome timesaver. I am looking forward to this update.

  6. Beulah Wellington says

    Thank you for this article. I am looking forward to all the features coming in WordPress 5.4. I like the social icons block and the buttons block as well as the additional color options.

  7. Frank says

    Thanks for all this, a really useful article. The flexibility on colouring for limited text within a block is particularly welcome, so can we please get the facility to change the font size in the same way and can we change line spacing inside particular blocks to make them work like a conventional text editor?

    • WPBeginner Support says

      We are not in control of what is added to WordPress but this is certainly one possibility for something to add in the future :)


  8. Daniyal Raza says

    I am really disappointed. I want dark mode for my website. And I want WordPress to natively support this.

    • WPBeginner Support says

      If you mean on the front end of your site, that would be determined by your specific theme rather than something WordPress core would handle


    • WPBeginner Support says

      Unless we hear otherwise, that feature has been pushed back to a future version.


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