BuddyPress 2.8 will require at least WordPress 4.3

BuddyPress 2.8.0 Beta 1 was announced yesterday. The version officially drops support for older versions of PHP and WordPress, requiring support for PHP 5.3+ and WordPress 4.3+

This change in BuddyPress won’t necessarily cause any problems, especially in the short term. However, BuddyPress + rtMedia is a combination that we often come across, which is why we thought it best to shed some light on this change.

What does “dropping support” actually mean?

As explained in one of BuddyPress’ docs, “dropping support” simply means that BuddyPress will not be guaranteed to work without any errors if used with an older version of WordPress. It also means that features that require more recent versions of WordPress to work might be unavailable.

This does not mean that BuddyPress will stop functioning on your website if you choose not to update your version of WordPress. Even so, we always advise our users to keep their websites up to date simply because WordPress is constantly evolving to be more secure, usable and feature-filled.

Why you should consider updating

Improvements since WordPress version 4.2 include:

  • Formatting Shortcuts while using Visual editor & improved Customizer (link)
  • Responsive images & better link embed support (link)
  • Streamlined workflow for content creation and site management (link)
  • Native fonts and easier plugin management (link)
  • Customizer improvements and a new REST API (link)

All these changes are just the “major” ones. Minor releases (like the recent WordPress 4.7.1 one) often bring their own set of security patches and enhancements.

In conclusion

BuddyPress’ decision to drop support for WordPress 4.2 should not affect a majority of users. At the time of writing, version 4.3 and above make up a comfortable majority of users (they account to about 79.4% of all users).

BuddyPress 2.8 is still on Beta, and will take at least a couple of weeks more to develop into an RC. This should give you some time to consider your options before upgrading.

If you are already on a later version, you deserve a cookie ?

Have a great weekend ahead! 😀

Links: BuddyPress 2.8.0 Beta | rtMedia