Although there is no set release date for the robust platform a great indicator of Drupal's 8 release is closely linked to its current critical issues queue. Regardless of an official release date, what can we expect in the upcoming release?
Instead of releasing Drupal 8 and waiting on a Drupal 9 for new features we can now expect new features to be rolled out every 6 months rather than every 4 years. Lets face it, 4 years for new features is incredibly long, especially in tech.
The web has come a long way from the standard desktop environments. We have tablets, cell phones and even wearable technology. Having a content management system (CMS) mobile focused paves way for brand new ideologies on how we build applications.
What makes Drupal what it is today is the highly used module called Views. In simple terms, views handles how data is displayed or retrieved on your website. Having Views in core is great as it's one of the key modules that does not need to be ported into Drupal 8, which in turn will lead to faster integration for the less complicated sites.
In past versions Drupal did things differently, made outside API integration difficult and pretty much shut out a lot of developers with web backgrounds outside of Drupal. Drupal 8 sets out to change that. Now developers and site architects can plugin powerful applications such as node.js and backbone, into Drupal thus producing websites never seen before on the Drupal platform.
This one comes as a relief - WYSIWYG is now built into core.
For designers this is huge. The ability to have blocks within every pixel of a screen will yield great designs, themes and user experience (UX). Site builders can also now add fields on custom blocks and create different custom block types, providing more ways to present content.
But don't take my word for it. You can take Drupal 8 for a test drive right now to see all the changes first hand.