As the WordPress community looks forward to the WordPress 5.9 release on January 25, 2022, the Gutenberg team is working behind the scenes to develop complementary features for 2022’s first major WordPress update.
Keep reading to learn more about:
Gutenberg 12.0 Updates
WordPress released Gutenberg 12.0 on November 24, 2021.
When Gutenberg 12.0 was released, the WordPress team decided to move the WordPress 5.9 release date. Thus, Gutenberg 12.0 addressed more bug fixes rather than improvements.
Highlights include the block styles previews and block icons in the global styles sidebar. Version 12.0 also had a Site Editor welcome guide to introduce users to the new tool. The welcome guide will be shipped out with WordPress 5.9 in January 2022.
Block Styles Previews
Before this release, Block Styles appeared in both the block’s toolbar and the editor’s sidebar, which appeared as previews adding to the sidebar’s overall height.
In Gutenberg 12.0, text-based buttons emphasizing the style names replaced these previews. Users can still get a preview when they hover over the individual block.
Another improvement to Gutenberg 12.0 was the addition of icons to the global styles blocks list. The list, which contains multiple items, is easier to navigate with the icons.
Gutenberg 12.1 Updates
Version 12.1 came out on December 8, 2021, exactly two weeks after Gutenberg 12.0 was released.
Gutenberg 12.1 focused on improving user experience, global styles and template features.
Global Styles Improvements
There were multiple Global Styles improvements in this cycle. The upgrades include:
- User-defined custom gradients. Users can now customize color gradients on the color palette section on the global styles sidebar.
- Duotone colors. Besides defining custom gradients, duotone colors are also available in the color palette section. However, users can only view these colors; there’s no option to create custom duotone colors yet.
- Split typography options. The typography panel now splits typography options between text and link styles. The feature allows users to switch easily between the two — possibly opening the door for future HTML improvements.
Return of the Template List View
Version 12.1 marked the return of the template list view, allowing users to navigate between the homepage and other template parts in the site editor.
Previously, the list was available in the left slide-out panel before being removed in Gutenberg 11.9. The Gutenberg team decided to return it in version 12.1.
The panel has been scaled back from its older version to showcase a more straightforward and functional design. The panel now includes three links for Site, Templates and Template parts. The first link brings up the site editor, while the latter two display tables of existing templates.
With the new iteration in panel design, client-side navigation and mosaic view may be future additions.
Gutenberg 12.2 Updates
Like an early Christmas gift to the WordPress community, the Gutenberg team released version 12.2 on December 22, 2021. It’s the last minor Gutenberg release for 2021.
While Gutenberg 12.0 focused on bug fixes and version 12.1 focused on template and global styles user improvements, Gutenberg 12.2 introduced more well-rounded enhancements in user experience, such as improvements to post comments and an enhanced color picker.
Improvements To Post Comments
With the Gutenberg 12.2 update, the Comments Query Loop block now displays nested comments.
The new Comments Pagination Numbers block also displays page numbers inside the Comments Pagination block, which can be used in the Comments Query Loop block.
This feature allows users to navigate comments using page numbers. Pagination in the Comments Query Loop block works similarly to post pagination.
Enhanced Color Picker
Gutenberg 12.2 introduced a dropdown-based color picker which improves the user interface (UI) so users can see the text, background and link color options at once. The improved UI is easier to use, especially when editing a few colors back-to-back.
Final Thoughts — What’s New in Gutenberg 12.2? | December 2021
The first three Gutenberg 12 releases focused on bug fixes and improving user experience to ensure that the much-anticipated WordPress 5.9 release in January 2022 goes smoothly.
Expect more improvements to the Gutenberg plugin in the coming year.
Follow @Bluehost on Twitter for the latest WordPress news.