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WordPress 5.3: An Initial Review of the Best Features

Updated on December 22, 2021

4 Min Read
wordpress 5.3

The wait is over for WordPress lovers. WordPress 5.3 Beta 1 is here. Following the tradition, we at Cloudways have come up with a quick review that highlights all the new updates in the latest WordPress release.

Let’s start with the schedule of release of various WordPress versions and then dive into how you can check out the features of this release.

Proposed WordPress 5.3 Schedule

Mark your dates.  Here is the complete schedule of WordPress 5.3 release.

  • 23 September 2019: Beta 1
  • 30 September 2019: Beta 2
  • 7 October 2019: Beta 3
  • 15 October 2019: Release candidate 1
  • 22 October 2019: Release candidate 2
  • 29 October 2019: Release candidate 3
  • 5 November 2019: Release candidate 4 (if needed)
  • 12 November 2019: General release of WordPress 5.3

How to Test WordPress 5.3 Beta 1

To test WordPress 5.3 beta, you can download the  WordPress Beta Tester plugin (choose the “bleeding edge nightlies” option).

Welcome Twenty Twenty (The New Default Theme)

Twenty Twenty

WordPress 5.3 comes with a new default Twenty Twenty theme. This theme is based on the Chaplin, released early this year. Twenty Twenty includes full support for the block editor (still a matter of debate in the community), customized fonts and colors, post meta settings, and much more.

Block Editor: Features & Improvements

The best thing about WordPress 5.3 is that all twelve prior releases of the Gutenberg plugin would be merged in a single feature-packed block editor. This is exciting news for the block editor fans who will now have a lot of features at their disposal.

Some of the features are as follows.

  • Improved columns block (width support + patterns)I
  • Improved Separator block (color support)
  • Improved  Latest Posts block (support excerpt, content)
  • Improved Button block (support target, border-radius)
  • Improved Block Style Variations API
  • Improved Group block and grouping interactions
  • Improved  Data Module API (useSelect/effect)
  • Improved  Snackbar notices
  • Improved  Typewriter Experience
  • Improved Fix a number of Accessibility report issues
  • & many more.

If you are interested in a particular release, here is a list of every Gutenberg release to date:  6.5, 6.4, 6.3, 6.2, 6.1, 6.0, 5.9, 5.8, 5.7, 5.6, 5.5, and 5.4.

Admin Interface Enhancements

WordPress 5.3 incorporates a newly designed admin interface. The developers have also fixed many accessibility issues, including color contrasts on form fields and buttons, WordPress color scheme, better zoom management, and more.

Big Images are Coming to WordPress

The image size has been a consistent pain point for WordPressers and almost everyone has complained of how WordPress deals with large image files. Well, in this release, Automattic has addressed the issue and the block editor can easily manage and display all image sizes.

So now, “ High-Resolution Pictures isn’t a Problem Anymore.”

Automatic Image Rotation During Upload

In WordPress 5.3, users can easily rotate the uploaded images according to the EXIF orientation.

Site Health Checks

Site health checker

WordPress now offers a native site health checker that identifies issues with the website. In addition, this tool would inform users about the available updates. As you might have guessed, it is located under the Tools section.

Admin Email Verification

Admin Email Verification

WordPress 5.3 is set to introduce an admin email verification screen that will pop up every six months.

What’s New for Developers

WordPress 5.3 also has good stuff for developers. Here’s a sneak peek:

Time/Date Component Fixes

Developers now have reliable and easy to work with date and time components. For more details, Visit Date/Time component improvements in WordPress 5.3.

PHP 7.4 Compatibility

WordPress 5.3 fully supports PHP 7.4 (released earlier this year).

Note: “Please test this beta release with PHP 7.4 to ensure all functions continue to work smoothly and do not raise any new warnings.”

Learn about Other Changes for Developers.

What The Community is Saying About WordPress 5.3



“Just seen the block editor improvements, looking good!”




“Looking great! And not without a dash of self-irony 😀  “Your images will be correctly rotated upon upload according to the EXIF orientation. This feature was first proposed nine years ago. Never give up on your dreams to see your fixes land in WordPress!””




“After years, this is how #WordPress admin interface looks like in 5.3. Honestly, I love the current style than Gutenberg’s style.”


Final Words

I personally like block editor features and improvements. What do you like the most in the new WordPress 5.3? 😉

Feel free to share in the comments below.


Share your opinion in the comment section. COMMENT NOW

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Customer Review at

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Arda Burak [Agency Owner]

Saud Razzak

Saud is the WordPress Community Manager at Cloudways - A Managed WooCommerce Hosting Platform. Saud is responsible for creating buzz, spread knowledge, and educate the people about WordPress in the Community around the globe. In his free time, he likes to play cricket and learn new things on the Internet. You can email him at [email protected]


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