In hopes of being completely transparent in terms of roadmap planning for the next 4-month cycle of Telerik Kendo UI development, we're about to reveal what we plan to deliver for Q1 2015. Before doing that, I'd like to outline the integral factors and pillars that make the Kendo UI roadmap.
How We Define a Roadmap
After each Q milestone, our product strategy, product management and engineering leads organize an internal fighting tournament in mud, and whichever team prevails has the power to enforce its view for the roadmap! Ok, seriously, they meet to discuss, prioritize and slate new Kendo UI features, tools and functionality for the next four months, based on:
- Industry research and analysis
- Direct customer surveys and feedback (including our UserVoice portal)
- Forum posts and support requests
- Input from Telerik leadership
As you can see, your feedback is instrumental in helping to determine and prioritize what functionality to develop, so we focus on what will bring the most value to web and mobile developers as you use Kendo UI tools. After all this data is analyzed, mapped and correlated, the roadmap is shaped in its final form and published on our site.
Given these details about our planning process, we can move on with the major items that are coming for Kendo UI Q1 2015, so read on further below:
Two New Themes: Office365 and Fiori (All)
Kendo UI is used in various web and hybrid apps and on a plethora of popular platforms for web development. Often, this requires some styling customizations for the Kendo UI widgets, to be in conformance with the pertinent platform’s visual and design concepts. And although most of the time this goal can be achieved easily with the help of our Web and Mobile Theme Builders, we decided to go one step further and provide built-in themes in accordance with the Microsoft SharePoint 2013/Office365 and SAP Fiori design guidelines. As a result, developers creating applications for those two platforms will be able to directly leverage the new themes, and rest assured that our UI widgets will blend seamlessly with the platform styles. Naturally, if you want, you’ll be able to use these themes regardless of whether or not your app is built for Office365 or SAP Fiori.
Improved Responsiveness (All)
Historically, with the proliferation of the mobile web and the breadth of form factors and devices, responsiveness has gradually become a very important requirement for modern user experience. The Kendo UI widgets already have responsiveness integrated in their DNA, via their natural integration with the Bootstrap framework and their internal auto-resizing mechanism and API model. With Q1, we’ll make some additional enhancements in this direction, namely:
- Make the menu widget automatically switch to "hamburger" menu on smaller screens/browser windows, or mobile phones
- Reduce the number of columns in the grid and treelist when the viewable area for them is decreased
- Automatically hide the left section of the splitview widget (on small screens) and enable access to it via a drawer mode
- And more
We believe with these features, your users will be able to interact more naturally with your app, no matter whether it is accessed on a desktop or a mobile device screen.
Grid and TreeList Features (Professional + Server Wrappers)
With this release, the TreeList widget, which debuted in Q3 2014, is getting some additional attention by incorporating important column features, such as reordering and resizing, show and hide, and static (frozen) columns support. Furthermore, it will boast adaptive rendering for its column menu, filtering and editing features, making it better tailored for usage on mobile.
As with every Kendo UI release, the #1 in popularity widget in the suite will not be left forgotten or unchanged. What’s in for the grid, you ask? It will receive much anticipated features, such as:
- Excel-like filter, i.e. a multi-select checkboxes option as part of the filtering menu
- Copy rows/cells text to clipboard or Excel
- Auto-fit for column widths, depending on cell text content
These features provide an even more feature-rich grid for a slew of application scenarios.
Chart Visual Templates (Professional + Server Wrappers)
Following the recent leverage of the Drawing API engine and its vast drawing flexibility and customization, the chart will expose visual templates for its core elements, allowing you to tweak or completely replace portions of the chart with your custom visualizations. This is quite a powerful feature to bring your chart data visualizations to the next level of user experience.
Collapsible Panel (New Widget, Core + Server Wrappers)
The main purpose of this new widget will be to output header and detail content by means of collapsible functionality. This is useful in a variety of cases for web and mobile apps when the screen estate is limited, but you still would want to display compressed discoverable data for the end users.
Export (Professional + Server Wrappers)
Q3 2014 marked the introduction of client export to Pdf and/or Excel for the large portion of Kendo UI widgets for which this feature is meaningful. And we’ve already got very positive feedback about it. With Q1, it will be delivered to the remaining ones, for example:
- Pdf export for Editor
- Pdf export for Map
- Pdf and Excel export for PivotGrid
Thus your apps will have export capabilities readily available for all Kendo UI Professional widgets.
NuGet and Bower feeds for trial and commercial Kendo UI packages
We listened to your feedback about needing a more straightforward means to get access and upgrades for Kendo UI tools via NuGet and Bower, and I’m pleased to inform you that starting Q1, you’ll be able to discover public (for trials) and private (for commercial versions) feeds for Kendo UI products right there! No need to visit telerik.com to download or upgrade your Kendo UI version any more, since this would be only one click away on NuGet or Bower.
Note that the NuGet feeds will be both for Kendo UI Professional and Telerik UI for ASP.NET MVC trial and commercial versions.
ASP.NET vNext + Scaffolding + new Project Template (MVC Server Wrappers)
As we already know, ASP.NET vNext and MVC6 are expected to be very different in terms of framework and architecture, compared to the previous versions of ASP.NET. This would require a major overhaul of our Telerik UI for ASP.NET MVC product (powered by Kendo UI framework) in order to support the new .NET Core CLR and the modified MVC6 model. Our commitment for the next release of the Kendo UI MVC wrappers is to stay in line with the ASP.NET vNext development and public Beta versions, and deliver official support for vNext and Visual Studio 2015 shortly after they are released officially by Microsoft. A tremendous amount of work lays in front of our engineering team, but we are optimistic with the progress so far and remain dedicated to this future goal. We are truly excited about the new opportunities ahead of us with:
On top of that, we’ll be aiming to improve your Visual Studio experience with Telerik UI for ASP.NET MVC by delivering scaffolding capabilities, such as the ability to automatically generate the code plumbing between your data and view layers hosting data-bound Kendo UI MVC wrappers. And that’s not all – a new MVC project template is in the works to get you started as fast as possible with a predefined generic boilerplate for your MVC project. Stay tuned for updates or a separate blog post on those Visual Studio enhancements in the coming months.
What Else (Core + Server Wrappers)
Here are a few other important additions that you'll find in our Q1 2015 release:
- ComboBox: support for paging/virtual scrolling (#1 voted item on UserVoice)
- Vertical TabStrip mode (#2 voted item on UserVoice)
- DropDownList: support for option groups (#4 voted item on UserVoice)
I would also like to mention that our knockout-kendo labs project will be revived and will receive some important fixes to facilitate the integration between KnockoutJS and Kendo UI.
Voice Your Feedback
As a customer-driven company, your feedback plays a key role in planning the development direction for Kendo UI. Hence, I’m happy to hear your opinion on our roadmap, sharing it in the comments section below.
If you have any suggestions or feature requests, head over to our Feedback portal and share them where they can be discussed and voted on by the community.
I wish to all of you and your families Happy Holidays! Let’s be with our beloved ones during these bright and cheerful days of the year. This will elevate our spirit to become more creative, passionate and tailor better mobile web experiences with Kendo UI in 2015!