WordPress 5.1: Who is Betty and What Does She Mean to Me?

HTML Code being used to develop a website
Last edited 21 March, 2024
Website Development
2 min read.

WordPress usually releases a few major updates every year, and ‘Betty’, or WordPress 5.1, is the first major update of 2019. Named in honour of acclaimed jazz vocalist Betty Carter, the update adds a few new features to improve speed, performance and security.

What’s New in WordPress 5.1?

The new version of WordPress is mostly back end improvements and focuses primarily on fine-tweaking some of the features of WordPress 5.0. It paves the way for a better, faster and more secure platform and consists of some essential tools for site administrators and developers:

Site Health Features

With security and speed in mind, WordPress 5.1 introduces Site Health features. This means that WordPress will now start showing notices to administrators of sites that run outdated versions of PHP, which is the programming language that controls WordPress. With the latest PHP versions seriously boosting site performance, you will want the newest and best in order to make your site faster.

As well as this, when installing new plugins, the Site Health features will check whether a plugin requires a version of PHP that is incompatible with your site. If so, it will prevent you from installing that plugin. Increasing security, the Site Health features mean that your site will always be up to date, current and quick with optimum performance and reduced downtime.

Editor Performance

As the latest update of WordPress focuses on pace, WordPress’s latest feature includes solid performance improvements within the editor. Now, the editor will start quicker, and typing will feel smoother. This means that WordPress will be quicker when making new content updates, further improving WordPress‘s speed and performance.

There are more features and improvements planned in upcoming WordPress releases and you can find out more about them in the WordPress plugin, Gutenberg.

What Do These New Features Mean to Me?

Here at EDGE Creative, we have specialised and knowledgeable web developers who are part of our expanding integrated marketing team in Birmingham. Michael Bragg, one of our web developers explains what the updates mean for our clients:

‘The recent server update to PHP 7.2 is a great help to clients who like to manage their own updates and plugins while the new editor means content updates are smoother. This further reduces barriers for clients when updating pages with fresh and relevant content. Overall, WordPress 5.1 makes our client’s sites more safe and secure, while also improving site speed and performance.’

EDGE Creative

Although WordPress 5.1 hasn’t brought any hugely transformative updates, the new features refine and develop previous changes that WordPress 5.0 delivered, increasing security and pace. If you’re interested in updating to the latest version of WordPress, EDGE Creative can help.

Our Web Care Plans provide our clients with peace of mind that their website is always current, safe and secure. Without a Web Care Plan, your website may be currently running an old PHP version, which will have reached the end of its universal support life and so, security patches can no longer be provided. This means that your site may be vulnerable to malicious material. Our expert team of developers will upgrade your site to the latest WordPress and upgrade your bespoke plugins to be compatible with PHP 7.2 in order to ensure secuirty updates are supported continuosly.

As a digital agency, our web development department work with the rest of our creative team to create full, integrated marketing campaigns for our clients. We do this in order to offer a holistic approach to our services, which include branding, marketing strategy, data insights, web development, search engine optimisation, content creation and social. In order to find out more, call us on 0121 355 8092.


Sophie Horrocks

SEO & CRO Specialist

Sophie started off at EDGE as a apprentice, an has developed a skillset she uses everyday as a SEO & CRO Specialist. Sophie loves what some people would say is the 'boring' stuff – the analytics, the charts, the graphs and the reports, but that’s all because she’s passionate about CRO. She ensures our client’s campaigns, whether that’s PPC or social media, are running as effectively as possible.