Updated 30 June 2023
In the ever-evolving world of Content Management Systems (CMS), Umbraco has carved out a significant niche for itself. Known for its flexibility and user-friendly interface, it has become a go-to choice for developers and businesses alike. Following the much-anticipated release of Umbraco 12, the CMS world is abuzz with excitement. Let's delve into what this new version of Umbraco brings to the table and how it's already making an impact.
Umbraco 12 is Here!
Umbraco 12 was officially released on June 29, 2023, marking a significant milestone in the CMS landscape. This much-anticipated version is now available, bringing with it a host of transformative features and improvements.
New Features and Improvements
Umbraco 12 is not just an upgrade; it's a game-changer. Here's a sneak peek into some of its exciting new features and improvements:
Content Delivery API
One of the most transformative features of Umbraco 12 is the introduction of the Content Delivery API. This powerful tool is a game-changer for developers and businesses alike.
The Content Delivery API allows developers to access and manipulate content via an API, eliminating the need for custom code. This means that developers can retrieve, update, and manage content more efficiently, saving time and resources.
With the Content Delivery API in Umbraco 12, you can manage all your content from a single location. When you update content in Umbraco, the changes are automatically pushed to all your platforms via the API. This ensures consistency across all your platforms and frees up your team to focus on creating great content rather than managing it.
The introduction of the Content Delivery API is a significant step towards making Umbraco a headless CMS. In a headless CMS, the front-end (the "head") is decoupled from the back-end content repository. This means you can use any technology you like to present your content, while the CMS takes care of managing it. This gives businesses unprecedented flexibility in how they deliver content to their users.
The Content Delivery API in Umbraco 12 brings powerful benefits - it streamlines content management, ensures consistency across platforms, and provides the flexibility of a headless CMS.
Regular Release Cadence
Umbraco has adopted a regular release schedule since its 9th version and that will continue with Umbraco 12. Major versions will continue to be released twice a year, and minor versions - which typically include bug fixes, security patches, and small enhancements - will be released every six weeks.
What this regular release cadence means for you:
- Stability: Regular updates ensure that the platform remains stable. Bugs are fixed promptly, security vulnerabilities are patched, and the platform as a whole becomes more robust. This means that businesses using Umbraco can trust that their website will run smoothly, providing a reliable experience for their users.
- Predictability: With a set schedule for updates, businesses can plan ahead. They know when to expect new features and can prepare for them in advance. This predictability is particularly valuable for larger organizations, where updates may need to be coordinated across multiple teams or departments.
- Access to New Features: Regular updates mean that new features and improvements are delivered to users more quickly. Businesses don't have to wait for a major version release to benefit from the latest innovations in Umbraco.
- Improved User Experience: Regular updates often include improvements to the user interface and user experience. This means that the administrators and content editors using Umbraco can enjoy a more streamlined and efficient workflow, making their jobs easier.
- Enhanced Security: With regular updates, security patches are applied promptly, protecting businesses from potential threats and vulnerabilities. This is crucial in today's digital landscape, where cyber threats are increasingly sophisticated.
Umbraco launched a new marketplace in 2022, showcasing extensions and connectors that enhance the platform's capabilities. This marketplace is continually being improved and promoted, making it easier for users to extend the power and value of Umbraco. Whether you're looking to add a new feature, improve your site's performance, or streamline your workflow, the marketplace has something to offer. It's a testament to Umbraco's commitment to providing a flexible, customizable, and user-friendly CMS.
Block Grid Editor
The Block Grid Editor, first introduced in Umbraco 11, is a powerful tool that revolutionizes the way content is structured and layouts are established. This feature is set to continue in Umbraco 12, further enhancing the content management process.
Some key benefits of the Block Grid Editor include:
- User-Friendly Interface: The Block Grid Editor provides a visual, drag-and-drop interface that makes it easy for users to structure content and create layouts. This means that even non-technical users can create and manage content without needing to understand code.
- Flexibility: The Block Grid Editor allows users to create a variety of layouts by arranging blocks in different configurations. This gives users the flexibility to create unique, customized layouts that suit their specific needs.
- Consistency: By using predefined blocks, the Block Grid Editor ensures consistency across your site. This means that your branding and design will remain consistent, regardless of who is creating the content.
- Efficiency: The Block Grid Editor streamlines the content creation process. Users can quickly create complex layouts by simply dragging and dropping blocks, saving time and effort.
Suppose you're creating a new page for your website. With the Block Grid Editor, you can simply drag and drop a text block into the layout, then add an image block next to it. You can then adjust the size and position of the blocks to create the perfect layout. If you want to add a call-to-action, you can simply drag a button block into the layout. The process is intuitive, efficient, and requires no coding skills.
The Umbraco Workflow is a new add-on that significantly enhances the content management process. It's a workflow, review, and approval tool that brings a new level of organization and control to content creation and publishing.
Here are some of the key benefits of the Umbraco Workflow:
- Streamlined Content Management: The Umbraco Workflow allows for the creation of individual content workflows prior to publishing. This means that you can define a series of steps that each piece of content must go through before it's published. This could include drafting, reviewing, editing, and finally, approving the content. By defining these steps upfront, you can ensure that the content creation process is organized and efficient.
- Quality Control: The review and approval stages in the workflow ensure that all content is checked for quality before it's published. This can help to catch any errors or issues early on, ensuring that only high-quality content is published.
- Collaboration: The Umbraco Workflow makes it easy for teams to collaborate on content creation. Different team members can be assigned to different stages of the workflow, making it clear who is responsible for each step. This can help to improve communication and collaboration within your team.
- Accountability: With the Umbraco Workflow, each step in the content creation process is tracked and recorded. This means that you can see who made changes to the content and when, providing accountability and transparency.
Support for .NET 7
Umbraco 12 is committed to staying on the cutting edge of technology, and this commitment is evident in its full support for .NET 7.
.NET 7 is the latest version of Microsoft's .NET platform, a popular framework for building web applications. By supporting .NET 7, Umbraco 12 ensures that developers can take advantage of the latest features and improvements in the .NET platform.
There are several benefits of supporting .NET 7 including performance improvements and new features but a major benefit is enhanced security. By supporting .NET 7, Umbraco 12 can provide a more secure platform for web applications. This is crucial in today's digital landscape, where security is a top concern for businesses of all sizes.
The concept of a "headless CMS" has been a hot topic in the digital world, and for good reason. A headless CMS is a back-end content management system that allows content to be published to any platform, using any programming language. This decoupling of the front-end presentation layer from the back-end content repository offers a host of benefits, and with the introduction of the Content Delivery API, Umbraco 12 is making a strong entry into the headless CMS space.
Here are some ways that Umbraco 12’s headless capabilities can benefit your business:
- Flexibility: With a headless CMS, you're not tied to any specific front-end technology. You can use any programming language or framework to build your front-end, giving you the flexibility to choose the best tools for your specific needs.
- Omnichannel Publishing: A headless CMS makes it easy to publish content to multiple platforms and devices. Whether you're targeting web, mobile, IoT devices, or even AR/VR platforms, you can manage all your content from a single place and deliver it seamlessly to all your channels.
- Future-Proof: As new technologies and platforms emerge, a headless CMS allows you to easily adapt your content delivery without having to overhaul your entire CMS. This makes your CMS more future-proof and ensures that you can keep pace with the rapidly evolving digital landscape.
- Improved Performance: Without a front-end layer to slow things down, a headless CMS can deliver content more quickly and efficiently. This can lead to improved performance and a better user experience.
Suppose you're a retailer with a web store, a mobile app, and digital signage in your physical stores. With a traditional CMS, you'd need to manage content separately for each of these platforms. But with Umbraco 12's headless capabilities, you can manage all your content from a single place. When you update a product description, for example, the changes are automatically pushed to your web store, your mobile app, and your digital signage. This not only saves time and effort but also ensures consistency across all your platforms.
Good documentation is the backbone of any software, and Umbraco 12 doesn't disappoint. The documentation for Umbraco has been upgraded and improved, providing a more structured and user-friendly resource for developers and administrators. This improvement ensures that users can make the most out of the platform's features.
Umbraco 12 is more than just an upgrade; it's a revolution in the CMS world. With its new features and improvements, it's set to make content management more efficient, flexible, and user-friendly. Whether you're a developer or a business owner, Umbraco 12 has something to offer you. So, let's look forward to June 29, 2023, and the exciting possibilities it brings.
Want to know more about Umbraco 12 or discuss how it can help your business? Contact the Umbraco Certified Goal Partners at Marcel Digital, we're here to help you navigate all things Umbraco.
What Umbraco Had To Say
Following the release of Umbraco 12, Umbraco shared a comprehensive blog post detailing the new features and improvements in this version. The post covers topics such as Umbraco 12's content delivery capabilities, support for Entity Framework Core, the new version of ImageSharp, and guidance on getting started with Umbraco 12, among others. Below, we have provided a summary of the key points from Umbraco's release of version 12.
Umbraco 12, a significant release, introduces the Content Delivery API, providing out-of-the-box headless capabilities for consistent content delivery across various platforms. It also supports Entity Framework Core, reducing the need for repetitive database access code, and includes updated dependencies and frameworks like ImageSharp for enhanced security and performance. The release complements, rather than replaces, Umbraco's headless SaaS offering, Heartcore. New versions of Umbraco Forms, Deploy, and Workflow are also introduced, primarily for full support on Umbraco 12. Umbraco 12 is now available for new projects on Umbraco Cloud, with updated documentation for guidance.
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