Jetpack 6.7: New Site Accelerator and Activity View

Jetpack 6.7 is now available for download. This release brings you a few exciting new features that make your site faster and safer.

Continue reading → Jetpack 6.7: New Site Accelerator and Activity View

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Jetpack 6.1: General Maintenance

Happy May and welcome to Jetpack 6.1. This month brings us another general maintenance release, so you won’t find any big surprises here, but there are still some important improvements to learn about.

The new things you’ll find in 6.1 are:

Privacy information links added

Jetpack’s position regarding its users and their visitors’ privacy has been enhanced in the process to make all of Automattic’s software GDPR-compliant.

You will now will see a footer on the “More Info” popover that appears next to each feature setting. These link to specific sections in our support docs describing privacy implications in the event you want to learn more about them.

Stats and Do Not Track changes

We now offer the users a way to have a clear map of the privacy implications of each Jetpack feature. We also introduced a new filter that will honor the Do Not Track feature for visitors that choose to take advantage of it.

Note that this only affects Jetpack’s own Stats feature and nothing else.

WordAds improvements

There are two improvements to the WordAds program to share this month. First, we’ve added support for the ads.txt file.

Second, we’ve introduced a new shortcode, [wordads], which allows you to include an ad inline on any given post or page content. This will give you even more flexibility in defining where your ads appear on your site.

Additional performance enhancements

There are a few bugfixes and enhancements in this release, but the main issues we tackled are the following:

  • When a post transitions to publish, Jetpack used to add Publicize post meta to all posts, whether or not it was a Publicize-able post type. This has been adjusted.
  • We removed the Sharing and Like display functionality from WooCommerce’s Cart, Checkout, and Account pages.
  • Users running their site on PHP 7.2 were seeing notices on their logs related to language features that were updated with this latest release of PHP. These notices should now be addressed.

Full changelog and thanks

As always, you can read the full changelog and see what else we have improved in this release.

Install Jetpack on your site or upgrade to 6.1 today to experience the latest and greatest!

Thanks to all the contributors to this release:

Aaron Douglas, Alex Mills, Allen Snook, Anthony Bubel, Brandon Kraft, Daniel Walmsley, David Newman, Derek Smart, Eric Johnson, Egill R. Erlendsson, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, George Stephanis, Igor Zinovyev, Javi Alvarez, Jacopo Tomasone, Jason Johnston, Jeremy Herve, Jeff Bowen, Jeff Stieler, Joan Rho, Justin Shreve, Lance Willett, Michael D Adams,  Michael Turk, Miguel Lezama, Mikael Korpela, Mike Jolley, Niels Lange, Oscar Lopez, Peter Westwood, Rastislav Lamoš, RC Lations, Rob Landers, Rocco Tripaldi, Taegon Kim, Tugdual de Kerviler, Yaroslav Kukharuk, and Žiga Sancin.

 

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Jetpack 5.8. Advanced Search and lazy loading

Jetpack 5.8: A Focus on Speed with Faster Search and Lazy Loading Images

Today’s release of Jetpack 5.8 includes several features that have graduated from beta testing. We are very excited to bring them out for you to try.

Let’s take a closer look at what we’ve included in this update, and how today’s additions will help you speed up your site and deliver faster, more relevant content to your visitors — always a good thing!

New search service exits beta

The most exciting news first: all Professional plan customers will now be able to use the new Jetpack search service, which replaces the default WordPress search functionality with an Elasticsearch-powered service. This delivers more relevant results with powerful filtering options and unmatched scalability for sites with large amounts of content.

For sites that have a large number of posts, pages, or products, you will see significant improvements to both the speed of searching through the site, as well as to the relevance of the results returned.

For site builders, you can configure our sidebar widgets so that users can refine their search by any categories, tags, month/year, post type or any taxonomy. For developers, we expose the full power of Elasticsearch under the hood — send custom queries or use our template tags to customize the end-user search experience. Learn more about this feature on our support page.

Jetpack Elasticsearch-powered Search on a Photography blog

We received a ton of fantastic feedback from customers who tested this during the early stages, and we’d like to give our heartfelt thanks to everyone who submitted their feedback, test results, and ideas for improving this integration prior to today’s official launch.

Lazy loading images

Sites that have a large number of images — like photo blogs, travel sites, and online stores — have a new feature to try out that may significantly speed things up and lower their bounce rates. We’ve implemented a lazy loading images feature into Jetpack 5.8, which significantly reduces page load times for end users.

Lazy loading images work in this way: instead of waiting for the entire page to load before displaying it to a visitor, Jetpack will instead show the page’s non-image content as quickly as possible (usually instantly). Jetpack then requests and downloads images on the page when the user scrolls down, so they’ll appear right as the user gets to that point on the screen.

Here’s a short video showing the difference between a site with this feature and one without:

Combined with our existing image CDN, this has the potential to speed up media-heavy sites dramatically. We’d love to hear your feedback on it if you give it a try.

Get more for your money with Jetpack Premium

About a week ago, we quietly rolled out some changes to our Premium plan. The keen-eyed among you may have already spotted the changes or new features in your dashboard, but if you missed it, here’s what’s new.

Previously, there were some minor differences in the security offerings between our Premium and Professional plans. But now, Premium customers have access to on-demand security scanning and automated threat resolution.

We’ve also lifted the 13GB restriction on video uploads for the plan, so Premium customers now get unlimited video uploading and streaming services.

Jetpack’s video hosting service is designed and optimized for WordPress, integrates directly into the media library you use on a daily basis, and—best of all—is completely ad-free. It uses the same CDN as our images, so it’s blazing fast. If you haven’t already tried it, now’s a great time to experiment!

Jetpack Premium customers can now experience all our Jetpack SEO tools.

Finally, we’ve made all of our SEO tools available to Premium customers. You can now preview and optimize your site content, or get in-depth stats with our seamless Google Analytics integration.

We think all of these additions make our Premium plan an even better value for WordPress users. At just $99 annually, it’s the most affordable way to get best-in-class security tools, super fast photo and video hosting, features that will improve your site traffic and search engine rankings, and so much more.

Not a Jetpack Premium customer? We also have a major improvement coming for Jetpack Personal that we’ll be ready to announce in just a few weeks. Keep an eye on your dashboard for an important notice soon!

Additional enhancements and improvements

Finally, here are a few smaller changes we still think are worth mentioning:

  • We’ve significantly reduced CSS and JavaScript assets that Jetpack requires when using features like infinite scroll and embedding rich content with shortcodes. Our payload has been reduced by 500kb.
  • Support has been added for site language and timezone settings.
  • We’ve improved the display of notices inside the Jetpack dashboard.
  • The GettyImages shortcode has been updated to use the new format required by GettyImages.
  • For Premium and Professional customers using our ad program, we’ve now enabled the ads in the header by default. We’ve also added filters so you can control the display of the ads via code.
  • We’ve improved the display of the Development Mode notice.

Full changelog and thanks

As always, you can see a list of the additions, updates, and bugfixes in this release by reading the changelog for 5.8.

If you have any questions about these changes or feedback on the new features, please get in touch and one of our Happiness Engineers will gladly lend a hand.

Install Jetpack or upgrade to 5.8 today to see just how fast your site can go!

Thanks to the contributors to this release:

Adam Zielinski, Alex Mills, Anna Magdalena Kedzierska, Bernie Reiter, Daniel W. Robert, Daniel Walmsley, Derek Smart, Derek Springer, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, Greg Ichneumon Brown, Igor Zinovyev, James Nylen, Javi Alvarez, Jeff Bowen, Jeff Golenski, Jeremy Herve, Joell Lapitan, Jon Surrell, Marin Atanasov, Matt Wiebe, Michael Turk, Miguel Lezama, Mikael Korpela, Nicole Kohler, Oscar Lopez, Peter Westwood, Richard Muscat, Rob Landers, Rocco Tripaldi, Rodrigo Iloro, Sam Hotchkiss, Sanket Parmar, Scott Hartley, Simon Prosser, Stephen Edgar, Umang Vaghela, Victoria Holland, Jonathan Sadowski, and Philip John.

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Jetpack 5.5: compatibility with WordPress 4.9 and performance enhancements

Jetpack 5.5: Connection Improvements and WordPress 4.9 Compatibility

Today’s release of Jetpack 5.5 includes some changes to the Jetpack connection process meant to reduce issues and plugin interference. We’ve also prioritized compatibility with the upcoming release of WordPress 4.9, which is currently scheduled for release on November 14.

Let’s take a closer look at what we’ve included in this update.

Improvements to the connection process

We’ve made some changes to the connection process between Jetpack and WordPress.com. These changes should reduce the number of issues that may happen on a site when switching from a HTTP to HTTPS connection.

We’ve also improved this process to make sure that other WordPress plugins can’t interfere with your connection and accidentally disable features that rely on the WordPress.com servers (like our image CDN, Related Posts, etc.).

Syntax highlighting in CSS now handled by WordPress 4.9

The next major version of WordPress, 4.9, is currently scheduled to be released next week, November 14 (but you can try a release candidate right now!). 4.9 will include a lot of changes to its code editors, like syntax highlighting, linting, and auto-completion.

As part of those changes, the built-in CSS editor will now have its own syntax highlighter. Until now, this feature wasn’t available unless you used Jetpack and its Custom CSS module. So from now on, Jetpack will let WordPress handle syntax highlighting if you run version 4.9.

Jetpack’s Gallery Widget will be migrated to WordPress

The Gallery Widget provided by Jetpack will also be obsoleted by the 4.9 update, which will include its own Gallery Widget.

When you update to WordPress 4.9, we’ll automatically migrate any Jetpack Gallery Widgets to WordPress ones (as seen here).

If you use any Jetpack Gallery Widgets on your site, they will be automatically migrated and become WordPress Gallery Widgets once you update to WordPress 4.9.

You shouldn’t see any major changes to your Jetpack widgets with the migration. However, if you use plugins that enable additional widget settings (not provided as part of Jetpack), you could lose these settings due to the way those plugins store the data. You can avoid this by using a new Jetpack filter to force the legacy code to load and then migrate your settings to 4.9 manually.

Additional performance enhancements

Finally, let’s wrap things up with a few additional enhancements you may want to be aware of:

  • The Carousel feature has been improved, and you should see better performance in standard and tiled galleries, as well as with comments on Carousel images.
  • Videos directly embedded into a page will no longer be locked to a specific version of Jetpack. This ensures all users see the newest version of the video player.
  • Our SEO tools will no longer output any custom meta tags if another SEO plugin is active.
  • A new filter, (`jetpack_google_translate_widget_layout`), has been added to the Google Translate Widget to allow you to change its layout.
  • We removed the Press This sharing button if you are not using the plugin, which is no longer part of WordPress core as of 4.9.

Full changelog and thanks

As always, the changelog provides the full list of updates and changes in this release. If you have questions or feedback, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to lend a hand.

Install Jetpack on your site or upgrade to 5.5 today and let us know how it goes!

Thank you to the contributors to this release:

Adrien Missemer, Allen Snook, Brandon Kraft, Daniel Swiatek, Daniel Walmsley, Demitrious Kelly, Derek Smart, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, George Stephanis, Igor Zinovyev, Jacopo Tomasone, Jason Johnston, Jeremy Herve, Jonathan Sadowski, Kirk Wight, Marko Andrijasevic, Michael Turk, Miguel Lezama, Miklos Juhasz, Nick Daugherty, Oscar Lopez, Paul Sieminski, RC Lations, Rich Collier, Rob Landers, Rocco Tripaldi, Rodrigo Iloro, Scott Stancil, Weston Ruter, and Yoav Farhi.

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Jetpack 5.4: Date Picker in Contact Form, Comment Improvements, and Welcome Screens

Today’s release of Jetpack 5.4 includes the addition of a new field to our Contact Form editor, display improvements to Comments and how they integrate with themes, and welcome screens for users of our paid plans. We’ve also added a new search feature, currently in beta, that Jetpack Professional customers can help us test.

Let’s take a closer look at what we’ve included in this update.

Date picker added to Contact Form editor

We added a new field to the Contact Form editor that allows you to add a date picker to your forms.

You can now create forms with date pickers.

This allows you to ask visitors to submit delivery dates, their birthdays, the best day to contact them, or anything else you can think of.

Improvements to Comments and theme compatibility

We’ve made some improvements to how the Jetpack comment form is displayed in some themes.

When enabled on your site, the Comments feature should now display a form with a default height. There should also be no extra white space below it. Comments entered into the form will cause the height of the form to expand automatically.

Welcome screens added to paid plans

When purchasing a Jetpack Personal, Premium, or Professional plan, you’ll now see a welcome screen with some tips to help you make the most of the plan you just purchased.

Here’s what you might see if you purchase a Personal plan.

Jetpack Search (Beta) available for Professional plan customers

If you’ve purchased a Professional Plan for your Jetpack site, this new release will give you access to a new feature we’re currently still testing: Jetpack Search, powered by Elasticsearch.

To get started, go to Settings > Traffic on WordPress.com, and select a site using Jetpack 5.4 and a Professional plan. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and enable the search feature.

This feature is still in beta, and we’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback if you give it a try.

Miscellaneous updates and fixes

Finally, here are a few more updates we’ve made in 5.4:

  • Fixed some UI issues within the Jetpack settings interface for the Internet Explorer 11 browser.
  • The Simple Payments button received some minor display improvements.
  • Facebook embeds have received display improvements.
  • RTL style fixes for some shortcodes.
  • Added a new “Time Unit” setting to available widgets.
  • Third party plugin and theme authors can add new menu items to the WordPress.com toolbar.

Full changelog and thanks

The changelog provides the full list of updates and changes in this release. If you have questions or feedback, please get in touch.

Install Jetpack on your site or upgrade to 5.4 today and let us know what you think!

Thank you to the contributors to this release:

Alexander Concha, Allen Snook, Andrew Duthie, Anthony Bubel, Daniel Walmsley, Derek Smart, Donna Peplinskie, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, Erick Hitter, George Stephanis, Igor Klimer, Igor Zinovyev, Umang Vaghela, James Fraser, James Nylen, Jeremy Herve, Justin Shreve, Kirk Wight, Lance Willett, Marko Andrijasevic, Michael Turk, Miguel Lezama, Nick Daugherty, Nicole Kohler, Oscar Lopez, Paul Sieminski, RC Lations, Rastislav Lamos, Rob Landers, Rocco Tripaldi, Sam Hotchkiss, Scott Stancil, Stanimir Stoyanov, Steve Seear, Takashi Irie, and Thomas Guillot.

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Jetpack 5.2.1: Fixing Widgets Bug

Yesterday Jetpack 5.2 was released which unfortunately introduced a bug that prevented content in new widgets from being saved. The issue did not affect existing widgets, only newly created ones.

Thanks to prompt reports from our users we’ve released an update (5.2.1) which fixes the issue.

We apologize for the inconvenience and recommend you update now.

Thank you to the contributors to this release: Rocco Tripaldi, Miguel Lezama, Derek Smart, and Elio Rivero.

Pro Tip: Personal plan customers benefit from priority support and faster assistance.

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Jetpack 4.8.2: fixing more PHP version incompatibilities

Jetpack 4.8.2 fixes issues appearing in Jetpack’s new Settings area, on sites running older versions of PHP.

This release is recommended for all users.

After releasing Jetpack 4.8 earlier this week, we immediately noticed some issues that we had missed during Beta testing. We released Jetpack 4.8.1 on Thursday to address those issues, but unfortunately noticed a few more issues since then:

  • On sites running PHP versions below 5.4, it was sometimes impossible to activate or deactivate some of the features via the new Settings screen.
  • We took the opportunity to remove another function incompatible with PHP versions below 5.4 in Jetpack.
  • In some cases, site owners would only see a blank page when visiting the new Jetpack Dashboard.

All of these problems have now been fixed. You can update to Jetpack 4.8.2 by going to Dashboard > Updates in your dashboard. Another alternative is to update manually by following the instructions in our last post.

If you want to learn more about what was updated in this release, you can check out the changelog.

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Jetpack 4.7.1: Markdown, Widget Visibility, and SSO Fixes

Jetpack 4.7.1 is here to fix a few more bugs, available now for upgrade or installation.

Continue reading → Jetpack 4.7.1: Markdown, Widget Visibility, and SSO Fixes

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Jetpack 4.7: The Answer is Always 42

Welcome to Jetpack 4.7, available now for upgrade or installation.

After a few releases chock-full of new features (like Google Analytics and Ads) we decided to focus an entire release cycle on some cleanup, enhancements, and bug fixes. An early Spring-cleaning if you will, getting us ready for some even more exciting feature announcements later in the year.

Continue reading → Jetpack 4.7: The Answer is Always 42

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Jetpack 4.3 and 4.3.1: A faster, simpler user interface, powered by React

This week we shipped Jetpack 4.3 (and 4.3.1) which includes a total visual redesign of the Jetpack user interface and a front-end built entirely in React—the same JavaScript library which powers WordPress.com and which enables us to provide you with a faster and more modern user experience.

This version has been a year in the making and is based on feedback from more than 8,000 active Jetpack users around the globe so we can’t wait for you to try it out and let us know what you think. Here are the highlights:

Continue reading → Jetpack 4.3 and 4.3.1: A faster, simpler user interface, powered by React

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