3 reasons Xenforo 2.2 already beats vBulletin 5.6.3

The Xenforo 2.2.0 Beta has the potential to be one of the best forum software of the year 2020. And it should be with its base price of $160. My impressions are so favourable and I can see how Xenforo 2.2.0 Beta could already beat the Upcoming vBulletin 5.6.3.

While the expected release date for Xenforo 2.2.0 is not known yet, it is rumoured that it may be released before the end of September 2020. Based on the announcements made on the community section of the two forum software giants, there are clear differences between Xenforo 2.2.0 and vBulletin 5.6.3. Yes, vBulletin should win on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) with its superior SEO options, but Xenforo 2.2.0 should have plenty of other advantages thanks to the new features that webmasters have been yearning for.

Here are Three ways the Xenforo 2.2.0 already beats the vBulletin 5.6.3​

1. Updated and improved Article and thread forum​

The first announcement of the Article-type was just but the beginning of an awesome journey by Xenforo. This feature has since been fine-tuned, with the latest announcement made on the 6th of August 2020.
Xenforo Article-style posts improvements.

Image Courtesy: Xenforo
The updates on this feature include the separated Author section (see image above). The Author's section has been separated from the article's body. Even the background colour of the author section is greyed out. This is not only visually appealing, but it gives the search engine bots some more juice to suck from your post!

Since articles are generally long, the name of the author has also been added at the top. You don't have to scroll all the way down to see the author's name.

Some added features cannot be visible to your eye, but the search bots will see them very well. Such features include the additional Schema.org metadata markup that was added to help bots identify the content of the article. This is the secret ingredient that has made WordPress the leading blog Content Management System (CMS), now it will be a default feature on Xenforo version 2.2.0.

For a long time, search engines have been ignoring forum content. Why? Simply because the content is user generated and is not considered authentic or high-quality content. But with the addition of the schema.org, the google, bing, yahoo and other Search engine bots visiting your forum will be able to easily identify article content and associated author and will be regarded as high-quality content, unlike normal forum posts.

There is a lot that has been done on the article-type thread and forum. We will soon discuss the intricate details of Xenforo 2.x on another article.

Bottom line is, once Xenforo 2.2.0 (XF version 2.2.0) is released, you will not have to buy those expensive article management addons anymore. Updating to the latest version of Xenforo fixes the issues in a subtle manner that does not demand additional horsepower from your hosting services or bandwidth.

2. GIPHY Support integration​

Who said forums should be boring? Your posts on the latest version of Xenforo 2.2.0 will not be boring anymore, thanks to the GIPHY integration.

We all love GIFs. Ok, not everybody but at least the majority of internet users.
So, Xenforo 2.2 will support GIFY, all you have to do is to add an API key from GIPHY and you are good to go. See the photo below.

Image Courtesy: Xenforo.com

3. Progressive Web App (PWA) Functionality​

More and more businesses are moving to the mobile platform. And Xenforo 2.2 will not be left behind. This feature has been long overdue for Xenforo. vBulletin, on the other hand, charges a whopping $359 for the vBulletin 5 Connect + Mobile Suite Bundle, a feature that will come default on Xenforo 2.2. All you need is to renew your annual Xenforo license at $55 to enjoy all the new features.

But what is PWA?
All right, let us back up a bit. Think of a technology that makes a website look and work like a mobile app without having to write a bunch of native code for the myriad mobile platforms out there. A technology that will not require you to go through the vendor's App Store.

PWAs are designed to address the gap between website and indigenous software using evolving web technologies for both mobile and desktop devices.

Push notifications are a good example of this, a feature that was implemented on the latest update of Xenforo 2.1.

Xenforo 2.2 (a.k.a XF 2.2) goes further to expand the capabilities of the push notification feature by making Xenforo installable, introducing a more elegant offline handling, and also able to support badging API. All these are meant to enhance the user's mobile experience.

Image: Xenforo
This is one thing I applaud the ex-vBulletin employees, now working at Xenforo. They got it right. The third-party add-on vendors have been selling very pricey mobile integration add-ons.

This is one feature that I am really looking forward to.
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True. PWA is a very important feature. I will help forums survive in future. Everything is going mobile, and Xenforo will not be left behind on this.
And thankfully so. Other sofware like smf show pretty well how troublesome a desktop site can be to navigate on a phone lol