As WordPress loves jazz so they name the release very much with notable jazz master. 5.1 named as Betty, jazz vocalist Betty Carter.
For this WordPress 5.1 version, there are few things new and you can see right after the update that there’s a sentence called A Little Better Every Day. It’s nice to do that by improving a little daily so you don’t expect major update on this as thing will evolve every time.
For this WordPress update, there are 2 things which worth to notice.
The first update will be the site health which is like a doctor of your WordPress I guess which it will health check your WordPress site over time.
The upcoming health checking it will be more focus on is your PHP version.
As the WordPress official system requirement mentions, WordPress recommend servers running version 7.3 or greater of PHP but there are still numbers of server are running 5.6 so the site health will alert those WordPress users on the dashboard.
Upgrading to the latest PHP version will get your site 40% faster in some research and of course the security aspect as 5.6 is no longer receiving formal update.
The second update is increasing the performance of Gutenberg block editor which was introduce in WordPress 5.0.
Some people like it and some people don’t like this editor. I guess over time people will feel the benefit of this Gutenberg as it will make author or editor life easier by the drag and drop interface with over 60 different element you can use within the editor.
It takes time for people to understand and know how to use that but you’ll get better skill after you used for few days.
Although I do not recommend, you still can use the previous editor now called ‘classic editor’ by install the classic editor plugin.
The classic editor plugin will be no long support after 2 more years which should give you sufficient time to get used to the new Gutenberg plugin and give WordPress sufficient time to improve Gutenberg so that users will be happy with using it more.
There are few things which was updated for developers purchase such as multisite meta data, API & JS processes. If you are interested in those, you could go the latest blog about WordPress 5.1 betty to have a look.
Before you go, if you are using WordPress and would like to see whether your site has good performance and secure, I will a free WordPress site health check for you.