Divi Tips No.124

Back to the evolution of Divi in 2021

Updated on 30/11/21

1535 words

6 minutes of reading

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The year 2021 ends soon and I thought that this Divi retrospective for the year 2021 would make a good summary to understand where this WordPress theme is so popular... Let's go back to some figures and highlights of the year that just passed... And let's imagine what Divi is planning for 2022...

1 – Slow down or cruise speed?

This is a question that some users ask themselves: Why Divi doesn't update as much as he did before? Indeed, one might think thatElegantThemes pedals in the semolina in recent months... Let's say that's what pessimists think. Optimists, on the other hand, think that Divi has reached its cruising speed.

And you are Optimistic Team or Team Pessimist ? What do you think about this?

That's right, Divi didn't launch many major updates this year 2021, let's see more closely:

YearsNumber of major updates

Ah yes, it is clear from this picture that in 2021, Divi launched a new major release every two months, compared to more than 4 per month in 2018. It's a big gap!

Background: how to update the Divi theme?

What can this be due to?

I don't have any official answers, but here are the probable reasons I think:

  • In 2018, Divi was far from the Divi today. There were still many features missing. The developers then had a lot of work to do to keep up with all the delays of evolution. This will have resulted in nearly 28 major MAJs!
  • End 2018 appeared the new WordPress editor named Gutenberg : a lot of work then for all major WordPress actors, including Divi. In September 2018, Divi made itself compatible with Gutenberg.
  • In 2019, big job still, because it's the turn of the WooCommerce Builder and Theme Builder to make their appearance. Divi is starting to look like the Divi we know today... But it was a lot of work for the dev team: about 12 major updates that year.
  • 2020, slight slowing of the pace. Did the Covid crisis go through that? Not sure, the bulk of the building had been completed the year before, so Tranquillou-bilou !
  • In 2021, only 7 major updates... Why? I think this year was based on performance and UX. A lot of work on that side, I guess. Again, with the bulk of the construction being carried out in previous years, it is normal for Divi to slow down its development when the delay is filled.

But above all, 2021 is the year of great changes for WordPress! A first major update of WordPress in July 2021 (v5.8) started to introduce the full edition of the site (named FSE). And another "big" update of WordPress (v5.9) was planned for December 2021. It will finally be postponed until January 2022. I clearly believe that ElegantThemes is walking on eggs. They might have anticipated some updates but WordPress getting late, Divi too... And worse, because the ESF is a feature that clearly encroaches on the platforms of Divi and his Theme Builder. ElegantThemes must then find a solution to reinvent itself or at best remain competitive.

In short, we'll see how this takes shape in 2022... We will certainly discuss it...

2 - Divi evolution in 7 key dates

Let's stay on the facts before we anticipate and speculate on what will be done 2022. This is Divi's evolution this year... Maybe you missed it.

January 2021: Visual Builder Performance

Major update to improve the design side of a site with Visual Builder. Divi dramatically improves the performance of its Visual Builder. We're talking about administration and not visitors... No new features this time, so you probably missed...

Read the official post here.

February 2021: Global colors

Introduction of a new functionality, not least: global colour management. Very, very interesting functionality that improves your site creator productivity and color consistency in the design of your sites.

In short: you create colors that are dynamic (synchronized). If one day, the rose you use no longer likes, you can change it with this beautiful purple! The modification will be performed throughout the site, in case you use them. This is a bit the kind of feature that is found in graphic design software (Affinity Designer, Sketch, Illustrator...).

Discover the official announcement here.

August 2021: Divi & Core Web Vitals performance

Not adding features this month but a big breakthrough in performance. The theme Divi and its builders improve their code to increase the performance of your Divi sitesAnd this time, visitor side!

Divi introduces the conditional loading of the code, Only if the modules are used on your page. As a result, the loading time is drastically reduced and allows your sites to pass the tests favorably Core Web Vitals Page Speeds Insights. All other good practices must be put in place on your site (image weight, quality hosting, etc.).

This update probably went unnoticed for two reasons:

  1. The MAJ came out this summer, when the cicadas sang under the pine trees.
  2. It did not offer any new visible features.

Read the official article here.

September 2021: conditional options

The September MAJ introduces display conditions based on:

  • Status: user role...
  • Visitor interaction: has he already purchased or visited any page
  • The device : computer, mobile, tablet
  • Publication type: display or hide according to category for example

These conditions are in the tab Advances most modules, lines or sections of the Visual Builder. Maybe you missed them.

Discover Nich Roach's explanations about the conditions.

October 2021: Builder Theme at the Frontend

The MAJ of October introduces the fact of being able to edit the elements of the Theme Builder directly from the Visual Builder front-end, from the moment they were created upstream from the Theme Builder... Okay, okay, I lost you a little bit, right there.

In fact, you can now edit something in your Header or Footer, directly since the layout edited with the Visual Builder instead of going to the Divi > Theme Builder tab...

Still not clear enough? Read the official announcement.

Early November 2021: improving the icons of Divi

Finally, an update that improves the design of your sites: Divi adds icons from Font AwesomeIt was time! Before, we had to hack to add some icons in Footer For example. Now the module Follow us on social networks is much more complete and a module Icon was added to the list of Divi modules.

Read the official article.

End November 2021: new WooCommerce modules

Two updates in the same month: this time 8 new modules in the Visual Builder! Divi has more modules for WooCommerce and that's good news!

Discover the modules.

3 – What is the new Divi for 2022?

I'm not guessing, unfortunately! And ElegantThemes doesn't have official Road Map, which leaves us with the most complete ignorance. We can only hope and speculate...

Initially, I thought that ElegantThemes would update to be compatible with the WordPress ESF which is coming soon. But apparently he is Technically impossible for this to happen, if I understand correctly.

So, soon, there will be two types of themes in the WordPress landscape :

  • Classics Themes: Like Divi, Astra, Neve, Ocean WP... Anyway, all the themes we know today!
  • Blocks Themes: all new generation themes compatible with the ESF (such as Twenty Twenty Two, the next default theme of WordPress 5.9).

So these are the questions I ask you (and ask myself, and I don't have the answers):

1 – Did ElegantThemes not make many updates to Divi in 2021, because the theme and its builders are sufficiently complete? Or is another theme being developed, a sort of Divi cousin (like Extra), which would be compatible with WordPress ESF?

2 - And if Divi were to introduce new features in 2022, what do you think they would be?

Personally, I think there are enough features and that the interest would now be to develop new modules for Divi and dust some others. Moreover, this is the trend that Divi seems to take if we believe the latest updates of this year.

What are your omens? What would you like to see in Divi in 2022?

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