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Project News: WebdriverIO v7 Release

Today, the WebdriverIO team has released v7! Webdriver is a hosted project at the OpenJS Foundation. To further grow the project, this new release brings with it an almost complete rewrite to the code base. With the v5 update, the project moved from a multi-repository setup to a mono-repo. This time, the rewrite of the code base is just as important and impactful but comes with almost no implications for the end user.

This major update will have the biggest impact on TypeScript users as types in all places have been updated and the way they are distributed has also been changed. As part of the rewrite, WebDriver has upgraded to Cucumber v7, which also moved its codebase to TypeScript. 

Hear from Christian Bromann, software engineer and core contributor of the Webdriver Project, as he explains some key updates:

Several updates include:

TypeScript Rewrite

Webdriver has rewritten the complete code base and almost touched all files to add type safety and to fix a lot of bugs on the way. This was a true community effort and would have taken much longer if they didn’t have so many people helping with code contributions. Bog thanks to the community for that ❤️! Before, WebdriverIO auto-generated all type definitions, which caused the creation of a lot of duplicate types and inconsistency. With this overhaul, all types are directly taken from the code itself and centralised in a single new helper package called @wdio/types. If you have been using TypeScript, you will now have much better type support for various commands and the configuration file.

Improved Google Lighthouse Integration

Since v6 WebdriverIO can run on the WebDriver protocol for true cross browser automation, but also automate specific browsers using browser APIs such as Chrome DevTools. This allows for interesting integrations into tools that allow broader testing capabilities such as Google Lighthouse. With the `@wdio/devtools-service`, WebdriverIO users were able to access these capabilities using Google Lighthouse to run performance tests. In this release we’ve also updated Google Lighthouse to the latest version to enable new performance metrics such as Cumulative Layout Shifts or First Input Delay.

New PWA Check Command

In addition,  Webdriver has deepened its integration to the tool and added audits for capturing the quality of your progressive web apps (PWA). These applications are built with modern web APIs to deliver enhanced capabilities, reliability, and installability while reaching anyone, anywhere, on any device with a single codebase. 

Webdriver will continue to add more integrations into tools like Google Lighthouse to provide more testing capabilities, e.g. accessibility, best practices and SEO.

New Docs

As you might already have seen, Webdriver has updated their docs to give this new release a brand new face. They have upgraded their Docusaurus setup to v2 and gave the whole design a new touch. Big shout out to Anton Meier for helping out and making the robot on the front page so lively.

Drop Node v10 Support

Webdriver has dropped support for Node v10, which was moved into a maintenance LTS phase by the Node.js team in May 2020. While this version still receives important security updates until April 2021, it is recommended to update your Node.js version to v14 or higher.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to start a conversation on the discussions page or join our growing support chat that has already reached 6.7k active members.