Unveiling the Microsoft Power Platform April Release: Transformative Features Ahead!

Authored By: Tom Smith
Dynamics 365 Consultant

The Microsoft Power Platform’s April Wave One release is poised to introduce an array of dynamic features designed to enhance user experience and refine business processes across various applications. As we delve into what’s on the horizon, it’s clear that Microsoft is committed to innovation and user empowerment. Here’s a closer look at the forthcoming enhancements.

Dataverse Platform Innovations

Block Unmanaged Customisations

Administrators now have the ability to prevent unmanaged customisations in Dataverse. This means that changes made within Dataverse environments must align with sanctioned application lifecycle management (ALM) protocols. Launched in February, this feature ensures a more structured and controlled development process, especially during development, user acceptance testing (UAT), and production workflows.

Enhance Security with Privileged Identity Management (PIM)

The integration of Privileged Identity Management (PIM) in Dataverse environments introduces an extra layer of security. This feature allows users to request temporary administrative roles, providing just-in-time access. This not only enhances security but also ensures a more controlled environment. Set for a public preview by the end of February, it reflects Microsoft’s commitment to secure and efficient environment management.

Power Apps Enhancements

Enhanced Table Generation with Copilot

Power Apps Copilot is evolving to allow users to create complex tables using natural language. This development simplifies the process of table creation and includes visual entity relationship diagrams (ERDs) to illustrate inter-table connections. Slated for an April preview, this enhancement aims to make app creation more accessible and intuitive for users of all skill levels.

Enabling Offline Capabilities for Canvas Apps

Canvas apps are receiving a substantial upgrade with built-in offline capabilities. This means that users can seamlessly synchronise data with Dataverse even without an internet connection. This feature addresses scenarios where internet connectivity may be limited, ensuring a more reliable and user-friendly experience.

Power Automate Advancements

Troubleshoot with Copilot for Cloud Flows

Power Automate is introducing a Copilot feature for cloud flow troubleshooting. This feature provides natural language explanations for execution errors, simplifying the debugging process and making it more intuitive and accessible. Initially available in preview for select regions, this emphasises Microsoft’s commitment to user-friendly automation.

Extended Cloud Flow Execution Metadata Storage

A new feature allows automatic logging of cloud flow execution metadata within Dataverse. This facilitates extended data retention and comprehensive monitoring capabilities, contributing to more robust and reliable process management.

Power BI Innovations

New Power Query Experience

Power BI Desktop integrates an enhanced Power Query experience, offering advanced features like Diagram View, Schema View, and Query Plan. These tools provide a more interactive and informative data modelling environment, empowering users to create more insightful reports and analyses.

Data-Contextual Power Automate Visuals

The Power Automate visual in Power BI now enables data contextual interactions within reports, enhancing the analytical capabilities and interactivity of Power BI dashboards. This advancement represents a significant step forward in harmonising data analysis and automation within the Power Platform ecosystem.

Power Pages Development

Integrate External Data with Virtual Tables

Power Pages will introduce the capability to integrate external data sources through virtual tables, initially supporting SharePoint and SQL. This feature expands the platform’s data integration capabilities, offering more flexibility and scope in site development.

Enhanced Site Security and Authentication Control

With the introduction of Azure Web Application Firewall integration and the ability to disable external authentication providers, Power Pages is set to offer enhanced security and control. This helps safeguard against a range of cyber threats and ensures meticulous management of authenticated access.

In conclusion the April release of the Power Platform is shaping up to be a landmark update, brimming with features that promise to enrich user experience and streamline business processes. For those eager to delve deeper into these updates, view our recent webinar. Stay tuned and get ready to harness the full potential of the Power Platform in 2024!