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What’s New in WordPress 4.1

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WordPress 4.1 was released today with many new features and improvements. This release will be the last WordPress release for the 2014, and it comes with a shiny new default theme for 2015. In this article, we will show you what’s new in WordPress 4.1 and which features you should try after updating your sites.

Please note that WordPress 4.1 is a major release, so it will not get automatically updated. You will have to initiate the update. Don’t forget to backup your site before update.

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Twenty Fifteen – The New Default Theme

WordPress 4.1 comes with a new beautiful default theme called Twenty Fifteen. It is an elegant, clean, but very customizable blogging theme. It was designed with a mobile first approach and it looks great on all devices. Twenty Fifteen also comes with improved support for internationalization by using Google’s Noto Font Family. The Noto font family project aims to support all unicode supported languages and scripts.

Twenty Fifteen the new default theme in WordPress 4.1

Twenty Fifteen is designed to maximize the usage of tools available in the Customizer. Users would be able to fully customize the appearance of their theme from the Customizer. Twenty Fifteen also comes with 6 color schemes to choose from.

Customizing Twenty Fifteen Theme

Revamped and Rejuvenated Distraction Free Mode

WordPress 4.1 comes with a totally revamped distraction free writing mode. Simply click on the distraction free editor button to launch and just as soon as you start writing, all the distractions on the screen will fade away.

Launching distraction free mode in WordPress

The concept behind the new distraction free writing mode is that the distractions on the post editor screens are actually very useful tools that users need while writing posts. The previous version took those tools away and in order to access those tools user had to switch back and forth.

The new distraction free editor simply fades away the meta boxes from the post edit screen, all the meta boxes fade back in as soon you move the mouse or move out of the post editor.

New distraction free writing mode

Inline Image Editing Toolbar

Many WordPress beginners have trouble understanding how to align images inside the post editor. WordPress 4.1 comes with a new inline image editing tool bar that allows users to easily align images without opening them in media editor.

Inline image toolbar

Install Language Pack and Switch Language from Admin Area

If you didn’t choose the language during installation, WordPress 4.1 allows you to change the language from the Settings » General screen. Simply select your language from the drop down menu and WordPress will install the language pack for you.

Switching WordPress to your language

Plugin Recommendations

Since 4.1, WordPress will try to recommend you plugins to try. Recommendations are based on what other plugins you have installed and what others are using. You can see the suggestions on Plugins » Add New screen by clicking on the Recommended tab.

Plugin Recommendations

Improvements for Developers

WordPress 4.1 comes with some very exciting developments aiming the developers.

Complex queries – Theme and plugin developers can now use advanced conditional logic, nested clues, and multiple operators in their meta, date, and term queries.

Title Tag – WordPress will now allow theme developers to control document title and not clash with WordPress generated title tags.

Customizer API – WordPress customizer API is aiming to build a complete JavaScript API for customizer. There are lots of improvements for contextual panels, controls and sections.

There are many more under the hood bug fixes and improvements. You can take a look at the full list of changes here.

We hope this article you an overview of what’s new in WordPress 4.1. We are particularly excited about playing with the new default theme and the customizer API. Let us know which features you liked the most?

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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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12 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

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    Did you know you can win exciting prizes by commenting on WPBeginner?
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  2. WPBeginner Staff says

    WordPress does not just have themes which control the appearance part of your website. WordPress also has plugins which extend the functionality of a WordPress site. When it comes to loading fonts, you need to be careful because loading too many fonts can significantly slow down your website. As for colors, each WordPress theme has different options. Some themes will offer you thousands of color choices while some provide fewer choices. For example take a look at the new Twenty Fifteen theme.

  3. Richard Havenga says

    I’m coming from “Blogger” (32 months experience). Blogger allowed me to choose from a dozen fonts, and unlimited font sizes, and several color-gradient families. On my chosen theme, “Twenty Fourteen”, Word Press does NOT have these options. Am I missing something? Decision time for Richard: stay with Blogger, or come to WP?

  4. Jay Amrutia says

    Hi, Syed

    This is a beautiful description and explanation about new 2015 theme.
    But here i would like to know that how to customize home or front page with summarised post list because when i activate 2015 theme this show entire post in my home page,…. If you put some detail explanation on costmize home page with sort discription with title like my present theme at this will greate help to me.

    Thanks in advance.

      • Peter Cralen says

        I have several sites, but never use mega menu or any kind of fancy staff menus. I m fan of simple and clean design, that is why I like this theme.

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