We’re finally ready to reveal the new look and key features coming in Vantage 4.0! It’s by far our most advanced theme yet. In addition to a design refresh, the code under the hood has been almost completely rewritten.
Our main goal was to update the design and make the theme much easier to customize and use.
We had our own punch list of items to enhance but also took constructive criticism from our customers. The most common requests were:
- Update the outdated design
- Make it easier to customize the look and layout
- Better compatibility with plugins
- More action and filter hooks for developers
We took this feedback to heart and did our best to include these requests (in addition to other items). Here’s a high-level list of what has changed.
- Refreshed the UI to adopt modern aesthetics
- Improved overall theme customization options
- Better support for popular WordPress plugins
- Improved extendability for 3rd party developers
- Removed modules better fit as plugins (events, maps api, reviews, etc)
- Stripped out features that caused option bloat
- Added the Foundation Framework (v6)
- Enhanced Google Maps with auto-complete location search, new marker options, and geocoding features
- Replaced schema.org microdata with json-ld structured data format
- Adopts WordPress theme best practices
We’re using the native WordPress customizer for easy color changes. Each page module can be moved to any position you like. For example, on the single listings page, you can move the photo gallery above the main content module or move the comments/reviews modules to the top of the page. In addition, sidebars can be moved to the left or right side…or even removed completely.
We’ve basically made it super easy to drag and drop content blocks (modules) into whatever location you like!
Also, we’ve added a nifty new feature to allow cover photo (aka large header photos) to be added to many different locations. These include the home page, single listings & categories, blog posts & categories, author profile pages, etc).
When Will this be Available?
There’s still a lot of work to be done and bugs keep popping up but we’re targeting
an end of the year release launch.
Update Mar 18, 2017 – We’ve patched up the Updater API and fixed some bugs in 4.0. Look for 4.0.1 to appear next week for download. Note: Existing customers will be able to download it but the migration script from 3.x will not be available until 4.1.0. That means you can install it on a fresh copy of WordPress and everything will be setup correctly but using it on your existing 3.x site, it won’t work properly.
Update Mar 11, 2017 – We had to pull the Vantage 4.0 release down due to some unforeseen issues with our Updater API. The plan was to allow existing customers using 3.x (who didn’t want to upgrade) to manually download 4.x so the auto update wouldn’t notify them of an update and on click, blow away their existing site. Turns out it wasn’t working correctly and the API needs some additional work. We chose to err on the side of caution so more customers wouldn’t be affected. We apologize for this “false start” and will be working the next several days to resolve the issue. If all goes well, we will re-release 4.0 later next week.
Update Mar 9, 2017 – Vantage 4.0.0 has been released! We’re still updating our marketing material and docs so things will slowly be rolled out. In the meantime, you can download it and tinker with it.
Update Feb 22, 2017 – We’re back to Vantage work after a few weeks off. Unfortunately during these past few days our Jenkins CI server crashed and we had to completely rebuild it. Artem and I spent several days working on that instead of Vantage code. 🙁 That server is very important as it runs tests and automatically builds our products into .zip files (from our Github repos) to deploy to our file hosting server (where you download things from). Without this server working, we couldn’t release any of our themes. So….we’re back online finally. So from here, we expect another two more weeks of development time before release. That puts us at March 9th, 2017.
Update Jan 29, 2017 – I’m going to be honest. We’re completely burnt out and need a break. The stress, pressure, anxiety and lack of sleep is taking a toll on our bodies. Our dev team (myself and Artem) have been working so hard on this release non-stop for months and we physically cannot continue coding and testing until we get a few weeks break. I hope everyone understands and is able to wait a bit longer (two weeks break plus one-two weeks more dev time). It’s painful, I know but we’re actually human and need some time to recover. Thank you for understanding.
Update Jan 14, 2017 – We’re really really trying to get this launched and we’re sooo close….however, last minute bugs keep popping up which push back our launch date (sorry sorry sorry!). We also have some personal things that are taking us away from work time (e.g. my 11 month old daughter is teething so sleep = very little).
Sorry to disappoint — especially for those waiting to start their new site. Don’t worry, we’ll have a special promotion for you once we launch! Keep checking back on this post for updates.
Jan 6th, 2017 Update – The Vantage 4.0 demo is now live! Disclaimer: It’s a work in progress so things may change as we make updates or fixes. The official demo with access to a user account and the backend, will be available once we launch later this month.
Update Dec 21, 2016 – With the holiday season in full swing and some technical setbacks, we won’t be able to deliver 4.0 before year-end. We are very disappointed as we hoped to release it next week. The good news is, we’ll have a public demo available soon for everyone to check out. New ETA? With Christmas and New Year holidays this week and next, our team will be taking a much needed break. We’ve been working ’round the clock on 4.0 so it’s time to recharge our batteries and then return for a final sprint to finish up the theme. With that being said, January 15th is our new target date.
Is it a Free Upgrade?
Yes, if you’ve got an active subscription to either Vantage or Club or are a legacy customer (with lifetime updates), the upgrade will be free. If your subscription has lapsed, you can easily renew once 4.0 comes out and get access right away.
Here are some screenshots (subject to change):
Single Listing Page
Single Listing Contact Owner
Listings Category Page
Single Blog Post
Manage Listings Page
Edit Profile Page
Public Profile Page
Responsive Design View
Admin Setup Guide Page
So what do you think? We’d love to hear your feedback!