WordPress 3.4 Beta 1 was released earlier today by the WordPress dev team. If you’re a web developer, theme/plugin author and would like to try out the upcoming version, then go ahead and get a copy. This version is still in development stage you shouldn’t install it on a live/production site. Rather, install it on a test site, play with it and report any bugs you find.
Here’s some of the new features on WordPress 3.4:
- Theme Customizer with Previewer
- Flexible Custom Header Sizes
- Selecting Custom Header and Background Images from Media Library
- Better experience searching for and choosing a theme
And some of the changes made under the hood:
- New XML-RPC API for external and mobile applications
- New API for registering theme support for custom headers and backgrounds
- Performance improvements to WP_Query by splitting the query (Please test!)
- Internationalization improvements (improved performance and locale support)
- Performance and API improvements when working with lists of installed themes
- Support for installing child themes from the WordPress Themes Directory
The final and stable version of WordPress 3.4 is scheduled to be released in May and if more people help in testing and reporting/fixing bugs, the sooner the final version will be released. Those who want to be beta testers should check out this Codex article.
WordPress theme and plugin authors are encouraged to start following the WordPress 3.4 development cycle so that they can update their themes & plugins and have them compatible with the newest version of WordPress.