As scheduled, WordPress 5.4 released on 31 March and is now available for download or update in your dashboard. It is named “Adderley” to honor the American jazz musician Nat Adderley.

This update introduces enhancements to the block editor. It also adds new social icons and buttons blocks. It also adds new APIs for developers to use in plugins and themes.

Matt Mullenweg, Francesca Marano, and David Baumwald led the release. Also, there were 552 generous volunteers working together on 361 tickets for Trac and 1226 pull requests on GitHub. And a few more contributors joined them in supporting roles in the release of version 5.4. In addition, check out the official announcement for detailed information.

Block Editor Updates

Now you can experience a better block editor. WordPress Development Team has added a gradient background feature to the Buttons and Cover blocks. Users can now change the color of each text bit in all rich text fields. Now the block editor supports color options in the Group and Columns blocks. In addition, the featured image box supports drag and drop images.

There are two new blocks in the block editor: social icons and buttons. The social icon block allows users to add a group of linked icons to their social networks. This feature will become more useful as soon as WordPress moves to full-site editing in the future. For the time being, use may be limited by being able to place it only in the content of the post or page. The button block allows end-users to create a group of buttons. The existing button block is now allowed only within the button block.

Block navigation with block breadcrumbs is now made clearer. Now, It’s easier to use. It’s easier to navigate with the keyboard now. In addition, you can now select blocks from the sidebar using the tab function on your keyboard.

Moreover, the editor loading speed has been 14% faster and typing speed has also improved by 51%.

Updates for Developers

WordPress 5.4 brings a lot of changes to the developers. Theme makers can now access the Gradients API for cover blocks and button blocks.

Two new actions allow you to add custom fields to menu items without a plugin and without writing custom walkers.

1. On the Menus admin screen, wp_nav_menu_item_custom_fields fires just before the move buttons of a nav menu item in the menu editor.

2. In the Customizer, wp_nav_menu_item_custom_fields_customize_template fires at the end of the menu-items form-fields template.

Block developers can now use the Collections API to group block collections by namespace. The Variations API allows developers to create individual block variations. The new social icons block makes good use of this API to create variations for each social icon.

In embeds, now the block editor supports TikTok—and CollegeHumor is gone.

Negative margins and default padding are all gone! You can now style blocks the way you need them. And, the refactor got rid of four redundant wrapper divs.

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