In the most recent updates to Java, the String class has undergone a series of significant method additions. Certain methods now yield instances of the Stream class, while some of them are Higher Order functions. The intention behind incorporating these methods is to offer a streamlined approach for handling strings in a stream-oriented manner. 

Handling strings in a stream-oriented manner brings the advantage of simplifying code and enhancing expressiveness. This makes it easier to apply operations like filtering, mapping, reduction, and more.

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