Atwix MageNews – July 2020

MageNews July 2020

MageNews July is hot off the press. Per the usual, we have a lot to say this month reflecting all that is going on across our Magento community (and beyond!). How eCommerce has been affected by COVID-19, Magento 1 EOL, Magento on Swoole, Storefront API updates and much more. So sit back, relax and dive into our monthly roundup.

Content

  1. [Merchant] COVID-19 – New Normal
  2. [Merchant] Walmart + Shopify Partnership
  3. [Merchant] Product Recommendations in PageBuilder
  4. [Merchant] Magento1 EOL
  5. [Merchant] Wirecard and €1.9bn of missing cash
  6. [Community] Magento On Swoole
  7. [Technical] Storefront API Updates
  8. [Technical] Magento 2.4 Release Notes
  9. [Technical] Useful Open Source Projects
  10. Want More?

Merchant

COVID-19 – New Normal

With Q2 coming to a close, it’s time to see how COVID-19 has affected the eCommerce market. The pandemic led to $52 billion in additional online spending, compared to initial projections. Big players such as Amazon, Walmart and eBay reported surges in their online revenues. The amount of online sales keeps growing, proving online shopping to be a safe and convenient way to purchase during the pandemic.

It’s important to be sure you are able to keep up with demand. For example, Amazon has recently invested heavily in its core fulfillment infrastructure. Namely, we’ve seen that BOPIS (buy online, pick up in store) and curbside pickup have become a more and more popular delivery option.

Another factor is a supply chain. Consumers are willing to consider less familiar brands when their top choices are unavailable. Brands that have products out of stock may need to work harder to retain customers. At the same time, this is an opportunity for less popular brands that are able to keep products in stock to win potential new customers.

More Info:
[Atwix] Employers are planning return to work but not a return to the past
[The Street] Ecommerce Surged Above Holiday Levels in May, Pointing to a Huge Q2 for Amazon and Others
[The Street] Getting Ready for the E-Commerce Market Expansion Due to COVID-19

Walmart + Shopify Partnership

Walmart and Shopify are partnering to create an integration that will allow approved Shopify sellers to automatically list their items on the Walmart marketplace. This will give Walmart customers access to a broader assortment of products.

It feels like a strategic partnership for both companies to better compete against their main competitor – Amazon.

More Info:
[Walmart] Walmart Expands Its eCommerce Marketplace to More Small Businesses
[Walmart] Walmart and Shopify debut a direct way to help merchants like Shelta boost their visibility and grow sales
[Modern Retail] How the Walmart-Shopify alliance helps both companies win against Amazon

Product Recommendations in PageBuilder

PageBuilder has a new component that helps to render AI-based Product Recommendations.

More Info:
[Magento Blog] Product Recommendations Powered by Adobe Sensei Now Integrate with Magento Page Builder

Magento 1 EOL

Magento 1 is now officially EOL. A couple of days before the EOL date, Adobe published the final security patch.

With EOL, merchants who are still conducting business on Magento 1 became responsible for PCI compliance and making sure their stores are secure enough. In case you have any doubts on what to do or you need quick Magento 2 migration options, Atwix provides Magento Express Packages. The list of other options can be found in our previous edition of MageNews June.

Magento 1 will keep living in our hearts and also in OpenMage project, which is a community-driven fork of Magento 1 Open Source. Find their after-EOL plans below.

More Info:
[Magento Blog] Support for Magento 1 Software Ends June 30, 2020
[Adobe Security Bulletin] Adobe Security Bulletin – APSB20-41
[Atwix Blog] MageNews July 2020 – Magento 1 End of Life
[Atwix] Magento Express Packages
[OpenMage] Plan for the time after Magento 1 eol

Wirecard and €1.9bn of missing cash

Wirecard AG is a large German payment provider and financial service, reported €1.9 billion in cash missing in June. When the company joined DAX 30 stock index two years ago, it had a market capitalization of €24 billion. After the scandal, its market value cut down to less than €5 billion. The Ex-CEO and COO were later arrested. Later Wirecard filed for insolvency while stating that it planned to continue business operations.

The Wirecard scandal may bring huge damage to the German financial market and the trust of the state authorities.

More Info:
[Financial Times] Wirecard says €1.9bn of cash is missing
[Wirecard] Wirecard AG: Application for opening of insolvency proceedings
[Wirecard] Wirecard Scandal: the timeline
[CNN] Wirecard’s collapse reveals cracks at the heart of Germany

Community

Magento On Swoole

Sergii Shymko has recently published results of his R&D project about running Magento 2 on Swoole-based setup instead of PHP-FPM. Swoole is Async PHP framework for building high-performance concurrent services that is based on coroutines. The report shows that it’s possible to get at least a 35% speed increase by reusing the bootstrapped Magento application between requests and Swoole setup.

Find the whole report with all details below.

More Info:
Swoole – Coroutine based Async PHP programming framework
[PDF] Magento 2 on Swoole – Performance White Paper

Technical

Storefront API Updates

Magento kicked off new Storefront API project. We started talking about this idea a year ago. Since then, the Magento Architect team has elaborated the concept of this project and just recently they presented the implementation plan during the community hangout.

New Storefront API is moving to become more granular and microservice-based architecture. Consequently, it brings us closer to smaller component-based releases which will make the platform upgrade easier. It will also make it possible to scale only the necessary parts of the project.

However, it’s easier said than done if we want to stay backward-compatible with custom modules that are already implemented. So Magento decided to start with revisiting the current storefront APIs. In a nutshell, the new Storefront API will be separated from Magento Admin (and the primary database) use cases and optimized for storefront scenarios. A huge part of the storefront is reading catalog information. That’s why Magento is going to use a document-oriented database (like ElasticSearch) to effectively retrieve catalog data. The communication between Magento Admin and New Storefront API will be done via the Event Broker component which is powered by RabbitMQ.

In the scope of the New Storefront API project, the Magento Architect team is also going to revisit existing approaches in the following parts of Magento:
– Checkout Flow – Magento doesn’t separate Cart and Quote entities. That’s why quote totals are being recalculated every time a new product is added. This becomes an issue when the count of products in the cart is decent like in B2B cases.
– Price Variations – Magento calculates a vast amount of price combinations based on customer groups, scopes, and product types. This is also an issue for B2B cases where we have rich price logic. Magento is going to introduce Price Books which will be a non-scope entity that is linked to some scopes. This will reduce the amount of prices Magento needs to calculate.
Product Information retrieval and Search APIs – Magento wants to separate Search API from APIs that are needed to browser catalog.
– Bulk API with patch update support.

New Storefront API will be gRPC-compatible. This will help seamlessly support monolith/microservice architecture and enable language-agnostic implementations for new components.

Storefront API will be open for public contributions soon. The early access program plans for Q1 2021.

More Info:
[SlideShare] Magento Storefront architecture
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – New Checkout Flow
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Price Books
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Backend For Frontend Layer
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Desired State of Magento Architecture
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Language-agnostic API
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Backlog
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Deeper look at components
[YouTube] Community Engineering Hangouts – Storefront Application – Demo time

Magento 2.4 Release Notes

Magento 2.4 is going to be released in August. There’s a possibility to try out 2.4 if you participate in the Magento Beta Program. Currently, we have access to release notes drafts that describe upcoming changes. We will fully review 2.4 improvements once released, but for now you can check these key highlights:

– Order Approval Workflow feature for B2B
– Log in as a Customer for B2B
– In-store pickup and bundle product support for Inventory Management
– MySQL search engine will be removed. ElasticSearch 7.6 will be the only option by default
– PHP 7.4 support will be added. PHP 7.2 and 7.1 support will be deprecated
– MySQL 8.0 and MariaDB 10.4 support will be added. MySQL 5.6 will be no longer supported
– PHPUnit 9.x will be supported
– Web Setup Wizard will be removed

Read more about what to expect from 2.4 below.

More Info:
[Firebear] Magento 2.4 Open Source, Commerce & Cloud: What to Expect
[Magento DevDocs] Magento 2.4 backward incompatible changes
[Magento DevDocs] Magento Open Source 2.4.0 Release Notes
[Magento DevDocs] Magento Commerce 2.4.0 Release Notes
[Github] Magento Beta Program

Useful Open Source Projects

Magento PHPStorm Plugin 1.0.1 – a new version of the plugin with UI improvements, extended code generation and inspections, fixed bugs
magento-devdocs/pbmodules – Scaffolding CLI for Page Builder modules
magento/aep-launch – Adobe Experience Platform Connector – this is a foundation for the subsequent Magento-Adobe integrations
kalpmehta/securitytxt – Adds support of security.txt file to the Magento2
Genaker/TerraformMagentoCloud – Infrastructure as Code for eCommerce Cloud Architecture on AWS

We will continually add our thoughts on Open Source, so check back in on the Atwix blog for more hot reads.

Want more?

Make sure to be the first for our August MageNews digest – subscribe to our blog. Oh, and please leave comments and share with your network!

See you again next month.

Other Digests:
Atwix MageNews – June 2020
Atwix MageNews – May 2020

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