Sitecore 9.3 highlights (and lowlights?)

03 december 2019 om 00:00 by Martijn van der Put - Post a comment

Relatively quick after Sitecore released version 9.2, they also released Sitecore version 9.3 last Thursday. As tech-minded as we are, one of our consultants had it running in the Cloud on Friday. Time to play around and look at some of the new features.

First of all, logging in and looking at the Launchpad, nothing seemed to change, except for one extra button. Horizon has arrived! The long awaited feature to replace the ever annoying and slow Experience Editor. Horizon is not installed by default, we installed Horizon 9.3 manually after the initial install.

Horizon added to the Launchpad
Horizon added to the Launchpad

The Experience Editor button also exists on the Launchpad....  Do I need to worry about Horizon?
Next up, opening Horizon and checking out the new feature. 

At first site the Horizon screen looks good, the performance is fast, but it feels like something is missing...

Horizon default view

I add a new page and since this is a new install I only have a sample page and the sample rendering so my content editing options are limited. Everything works smooth, there is an option to switch the view to phone or tablet layouts, page insights can be opened directly, rendering can be added, there is a simulator option to preview the page on different dates on different devices but it doesn't feel complete.

Once doing the real editing, the options on the components are limited. In the Text field I only have basic editing stuff, adding a hyperlink to the text-field works, but I can't find the option to add Sitecore media to the tex-field. That option does still exists in the good old Content Editor. There are probably more flaws in this first version. However, as mentioned before, the performance is good and everything works smooth, so a promising step for the future.

Refreshed HTML templates and improved template manager experience in EXM 

There are now 3 refreshed HTML templates; Announcement, Alternating columns and Call to action templates. Opening the templates and you get basic templates to start creating your email campaigns. On our installation adding new components did not work, for some unknown reason so I couldn't test editing the templates properly.

Creating a new email campaign with default templates

Sitecore Forms
contains new functionalities too

 Sitecore Forms now contains a new Bot detection functionality which is enabled automatically, no more need for a Captcha implementation. Also there is a File Upload element or an email confirmation element that can be added to the forms and there are even more improvements in Sitecore Foms.

Sitecore Blob storage
is a new functionality that allows to store Sitecore Media items in Azure Blob storage, reducing hosting costs and improving performance.

there was always some fog about whether or not contacts could be removed if they asked for it. Now the right to be forgotten removes all interaction, facets, etc. for the whole tree of merged contacts.

Other then the highlights above, there is more! Read the Sitecore 9.3 Release notes which contains a list of all highlights, new features, fixes, etc.