What’s New for the Microsoft Power Platform?

Earlier this May, Microsoft has announced new developments for its Power Platform, which includes Power BI for visualising data and PowerApps for developing custom business applications.

These upgrades were announced during the annual Microsoft Build developer conference. Why is this so important for businesses?

In a nutshell, with the Power Platform enhancements, Microsoft is allowing businesses to customise cloud products even further and leverage their existing Microsoft ecosystem, by advancing services for business intelligence, app development and app connectivity.

The Power Platform extensions will integrate seamlessly with the popular Azure for cloud computing and storage and Dynamics 365 and Office 365 for productivity, adding more value to businesses transitioning their systems to the cloud.

The Power Platform, described as a Platform as a Service (Paas), includes three components:

  • Power BI business intelligence tool for visualising data in multiple ways in one place.
  • PowerApps low-code development tool to create in-house business applications.
  • Flow tool for connecting and moving freely various data and applications.

Power BI is a suite of business analytics tools that deliver insights throughout your organization. Connect to hundreds of data sources, simplify data prep, and drive ad hoc analysis. Produce beautiful reports, then publish them for your organization to consume on the web and across mobile devices. Everyone can create personalized dashboards with a unique, 360-degree view of their business. And scale across the enterprise, with governance and security built-in.

Although not completely new, these components will further be streamlined and receive upgrades next month in June, to provide the same extensibility model as for Office 365 and Dynamics 365 platform.

For example, the Power BI Embedded tool, which offers APIs for embedding visualisations and reports within apps and dashboards, will be extended to provide AI through a drag-and-drop experience for all Power BI Template apps.

For a more integrative experience, a new suite of life cycle management solution will be available for IT teams and developers to streamline and test application types, plugins, and other resources and dependencies within the Power Platform.

Ultimately, businesses will be able to better leverage cloud infrastructure through Azure, ERP and CRM capabilities via Dynamics 365, office productivity tools via Office 365, and business intelligence and custom development through the Power Platform. This will allow organisations to unify and streamline enterprise data across a powerful cloud ecosystem.

Click here to view keynotes from the 2019 Microsoft Build conference.

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