On Ubuntu, the major-versions of software included are fixed within a distribution.
Because you usually don't get upGRADES with new functions in a stable distribution (ie Ubuntu 14.10), only upDATES which fix actual problems. Major changes are applied to the next release of the distribution (ie Ubuntu 15.04). So an upgraded version might be coming with the next version of the distribution in use. This applies to most Linux-distributions. They don't want to make sure that you have the most recent software all the time, but that the software is working together perfectly.
Using PPAs for some software is a possible compromise to get more recent software, or you can download the tarball from the developers website and compile yourself.
There are some distibutions using rolling releases - ie Arch Linux - in this case there is no version of the distribution itself. This is nice for enthusiasts and early-adaptors, but using such a distribution you will for sure experience problems with incompatibilities, and you will have to fix some things which probably never were experienced by someone before you, so there will be a point where you are on your own.
You should not use rolling releases in case you need your system for work.
However, even when using a rolling distro, you will still need to wait till the maintainers of the distribution created a package for the package-management in use.
If you REALLY want to have the most recent version of anything, you will need to create your own Linux-from-scratch-system, what means building ANYTHING yourself. But you would not have any spare-time to use your system for the rest of your life if you plan that as you will be recompiling software all the time ;)