Continuing in our monthly release cadence, we’re excited to present to you our first beta version for the July release of WooCommerce–version name 4.3 beta 1!
What’s new in 4.3?
New Home page experience
We’re bringing you a completely new home page for a more focused experience that enables easier store management. It includes just the 3 most important items for merchants to glance at:
- the inbox messages,
- a quick overview of the common store metrics, and
- shortcuts pointing to the most used settings
We’re happy to hear your feedback and thoughts on the new home page and hope we can make it into a central place of the WooCommerce experience.
With this release, we’re including a lot of improvements from the Blocks world. Among others:
- A new status for orders: “draft”
- All “Product Grid” type blocks now default to 3 rows instead of one for the initial settings
- HTML editing is no longer supported in several blocks to prevent accidental breakage
- More options available for Filter Products by Attribute block
- Improved handling of taxes for Filter Products by Price block
- Styling consistency and CSS improvements
If you have any of the Product Grid blocks (except All Products) in use on your site, and you never changed any of the default settings for the block, then the block will update to 3 rows instead of 1 row for the rendered products. However, if the block was saved to your content with settings changed, then the rendered content will not be affected. So you will want to double-check your blocks after the update.
Please note that for now, Cart and Checkout blocks are not enabled in the bundled version of Blocks. If you want to use those, please install the separate Blocks plugin.
Besides adding new features, we are continuously working on improving the experience of the core plugin as well. We have:
- improved concurrency handling for stock level management
- added a new Verify database tool to rebuild the database schema
- fixed CSV import and export tool bugs
- improved template caching in container environments
- fixed erroneous behavior of add-to-cart links
If you would like to know more, please review our full changelog.
PHP version support
As the world of WordPress is preparing for upgrading minimum requirement for PHP to 7.2+, we are following the suit. We will be increasing the version required to run WooCommerce to PHP 7.2 soon as well. With WooCommerce 4.3, to provide enough lead time for merchants and store owners, we will start displaying a recommendation to update to PHP 7.2+.
PHP versions up to 7.1 are not receiving security updates anymore, so we definitely recommend not postponing this decision.
Extension compatibility warning
After discussions with our teams and with external teams developing extensions, we have decided to remove the warning for compatibility for minor WooCommerce versions and only display it for major versions.
Since we strive to produce backward compatible releases and we decided to increase the cadency of our releases to monthly, releasing extensions just to declare compatibility with the new WooCommerce became a burden for developers. We believe our focus on ensuring compatibility and improved testing procedures would enable us to catch potential problems early. Therefore, we think this step can ease the burden of development teams without negative effects on our customers and merchants. We will keep evaluating this decision through our support channels to identify potential problems in this approach.
New Hooks and Functions
We’ve got lots of new actions and filters for everyone to play with:
|woocommerce_status_widget_low_in_stock_count_pre_query||Allows filtering the low stock count in the stock dashboard widget.|
|woocommerce_status_widget_out_of_stock_count_pre_query||Allows filtering the out of stock count in the stock dashboard widget.|
|woocommerce_get_path_define_tokens||Allows filtering the path constants to manage when tokenizing template file paths.|
|woocommerce_hold_stock_for_checkout||Allows for filtering whether or not the hold stock functionality should be enabled or disabled.|
|woocommerce_add_payment_method_form_is_valid||Allows for filtering whether or not a payment method should be allowed to be added.|
|woocommerce_hide_base_tables_missing_nag||Allows for filtering whether or not the base table missing notice should be shown.|
|woocommerce_settings_features||Allows for filtering the features advanced settings.|
|woocommerce_add_payment_method_form_bottom||Executes in the |
|woocommerce_before_get_rates_for_package||Executes before the shipping rates for a package are fetched from a shipping method.|
|woocommerce_after_get_rates_for_package||Executes after the shipping rates for a package are fetched from a shipping method.|
New database tables
We’ve added a new database table called
wc_reserved_stock to allow for better stock management and help with handling concurrent requests. Our solution should prevent stock levels to drop below zero, as it sometimes happened previously.
Here are our targets for the 4.3 release cycle:
|Release Candidate||June 23th|
|4.3 Final Release||July 7th|
If you’d like to dive in and help test this new release, our handy WooCommerce Beta Tester plugin allows you to switch between beta versions and release candidates.
If you discover any bugs during the testing process, please let us know by logging a report in GitHub.
Thanks to all of our testers and contributors!