KDE Plasma 5.26 Dazzles With New Widgets, Desktop Enhancements

The KDE Community has released the latest version of its flagship Plasma Linux desktop, version 5.26. This release touts some new desktop widgets and enhanced customizability.

The KDE Community took to Twitter to announce the new release, touting its new features:

The theme of KDE Plasma 5.26 is its desktop widgets. The official announcement page even says that it’s “all about the widgets.”

“The clock and calendar in your panel, the notifier, your KDE Connect monitor, the volume control; these are all widgets, and all can be added elsewhere, moved around, removed and, in true Plasma fashion, modified to an extreme degree,” the announcement page said.

The developers even posted a short video to YouTube highlighting the new widgets in action:

There’s a new widget making its debut in Plasma 5.26: Timer. As the name suggests, it’s an application for setting timers for things like making tea or boiling eggs.

What Else Is New in Plasma 5.26?

Widgets aren’t the only new feature in KDE Plasma 5.26. The latest release also has some new desktop tweaks.

The wallpaper will now match the theme that the user has chosen. A dark theme will have a dark wallpaper, and a light theme will have a light wallpaper. There are also some animated wallpapers.

The KDE developers have also made some tweaks to its new Bigscreen TV interface that made its debut in a beta version of 5.26. Two new apps make their debut now that Bigscreen is out of beta. The first is Aura, a web browser that’s optimized for use with remote controls. The other is Plank Player, a media player. Both of these are essential for use with a TV.

When Will Users Get KDE Plasma 5.26?

Now that KDE Plasma 5.26 is out, Linux distribution maintainers will have to integrate it into their systems. For the impatient, the KDE Community directs users to live images that they can download and extract to optical or USB media to get a taste of the desktop before their distro of choice packages it up.

KDE Plasma Stays Fresh With 5.26

KDE Plasma’s features tell the community that the project is still moving ahead. KDE is in a rivalry with another major Linux desktop project, GNOME. The widgets and other features will likely provide fodder for KDE fans in the arms race against GNOME in the desktop arms race.

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