For months, I’ve been getting one question above all: “When is Gutenberg coming out?” Well, it seems we have at least 2 tentative dates for WordPress 5.0 now. And it could be as early as November 19th.
The Core WordPress team had the WordPress 5.0 kickoff meeting today, and among other things, they discussed a merge date. What does that mean?
Gutenberg Could be Here in November
WordPress 5.0 has been in development for some time, and when it’s ready, it will be “merged” into the current version of WordPress. The merge date is when the new version of WordPress goes live.
Before that, there are 2 potential releases: a Beta, and at least one Release Candidate (RC). The Beta is like the first draft of the software. It’s pretty much complete, but it needs to work before we submit it for publishing. The RC is a version of WordPress that has been deemed ready for merge, after fixed from the Beta period. This will go through some rigorous testing to make sure there are no major outstanding issues. There could be several RCs, depending on how much more work WordPress needs.
The first proposed date for Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is October 30th. The proposed merge date after RC1 is release will be November 19th, 2018.
Subject to Community Feedback
There are alternate dates proposed for mid-January (January 22nd, 2019 to be exact). If there’s enough response, or more testing is needed, this will be the release date. Many folks have already states that releasing WordPress 5.0 right before the holiday period starts is a bad idea as there’s lots of travel, and it could be potentially harmful for users. I believe the hope was to get WordPress 5.0 launched before WordCamp US, a national WordPress conference. That will be held the second week in December.
WordPress 5.0 is Coming
Either way, we now have hard dates. We’re looking at January 22nd at the latest. Now is the time to start preparing for Gutenberg.