We are steaming ahead towards the next major release - Beta 4. Like Beta 3 it will bring about more improvements, more software and more bug fixes.
Currently we expect Beta 4 to be released sometime this year.
R1, for those who don’t know, is a full stable release of Haiku. The current plan is to release Beta 4 and then start a new release cycle for Beta 5, where the developers will select issues and tasks filed in the bug tracker under the “R1 milestone” to include in Beta 4. This process will be repeated for any consequent Beta releases until all the issues filed under the “R1” milestone on our bug tracker have been closed. Ideally, the developer team is aiming for yearly releases, thus Beta 4 is estimated to be released sometime this year. Keep an eye out on the Haiku website for any updates!
A voting system on the bugtracker allows everyone to help priorize the issues for these next beta releases.
After R1, work on R1.1 - which is an update intended to improve the user experience and fix any bugs in R1 as well as work on R2 - the next major stable release of Haiku - will start parallel to each other. It is important we fix any issues for users on R1, but it is also important that we start work on the next major release, hence the reason why the abovementioned development plan has been conceived. Note that this plan is still subject to change.
After Beta 3, we are looking to update our translation infrastructure, which is still running the now unmaintained Pootle framework, to use a more modern and up-to-date translation framework. Plans for this are still in the works, but the developers already have several options in mind regarding which framework to use.
We also have plans to introduce automated OpenQA testing and single sign-on to all Haiku web applications, but unfortunately those are on the backlog due to the lack of time and volunteers available. Any individuals wishing to help out with these tasks are more than welcome to, and are advised to send an email to the Haiku mailing lists at https://www.freelists.org/list/haiku or post a message on the forums at discuss.haiku-os.org
We recently have a new GTK port, which opens the way to porting a lot of existing applications. A few major ones such as GIMP and Inkscape already made their way to our software repository, although in an experimental state so far.
A Wine port is also in progress, which means even more applications to run.
That being said, we hope to also see more Haiku-specific native applications to complement this, and use the system to its full potential.
Modern applications often need 3D acceleration, and great progress has been made by X512, who used parts of the Linux Radeon driver, running in userspace, to get accelerated Vulkan running on Haiku. This is still work in progress, but we hope to integrate it in one of the next releases.