WordPress.org today launched WordPress 4.4, which adds a slew of new features to the blog management tool that will “make your site more connected and responsive.” You can download the new release now from WordPress.org/Download (7.3MB).
WordPress 4.4 brings a new default theme called Twenty Sixteen (Twenty Fifteen, in case you’re wondering, was released along with WordPress 4.1 just under a year ago). Here it is in all its glory:
WordPress describes Twenty Sixteen as “a modern take on a classic blog design.” And as most themes nowadays, it was built to look great on any device. That means a fluid grid design, flexible header, “fun” color schemes, and so on.
But many of you won’t use the new theme, so the first real big improvement is actually responsive images. WordPress is now smarter at displaying appropriate image sizes on any device, without you having to make any modifications to your theme.
Next up, you can now embed your posts on other WordPress sites, just like you would embed most media content. Just drop the post’s URL into the editor and you’ll get an instant embed preview (in Visual mode) complete with the title, excerpt, featured image, site icon, and even links for comments and sharing.
WordPress 4.4 also adds support for five new oEmbed providers: Cloudup, Reddit Comments, ReverbNation, Speaker Deck, and VideoPress. Nothing huge, but then again WordPress supports a huge number of embed types.
Automattic is already working on WordPress 4.5, coming next year, though it didn’t specify a month. We’re betting it won’t be ready before April.