With several months having passed since PHP 8.0’s release to allow for more testing and a few point releases with bug fixes, Ubuntu developers are working to transition now from PHP 7.4 to PHP 8.0 by default for Ubuntu 21.10. This extra time has also allowed PHP developers to address any PHP code incompatibilities with PHP 8.
Bryce Harrington of Canonical announced on Wednesday that the transition has begun. PHP 8.0 has been pulled in from Debian Experimental and set as the default PHP. Over the next few weeks other components of their PHP stack will likely be rebuilt and otherwise updated for PHP 8.0. Details in this mailing list post.
PHP 8.1 with more new features meanwhile is expected around the end of this year. We’ll likely see PHP 8.1 be used for the Ubuntu 22.04 long-term support release next spring.