Ignite 2022: Power Platform becomes more powerful with AI, Power Pages updates

Dave W. Shanahan

Power Platform

Microsoft’s Power Platform enables users and organizations to act on the data to digitally transform their companies by analyzing data with Power BI, build solutions with Power Apps, automate processes with Power Automate, and create virtual agents with Power Virtual Agents.

The newest addition to the Power Platform, Power Pages was announced at Build 2022.

power platform
Power Pages is a low-code, development and hosting platform that is perfect for building business-focused websites.

Power Platform “new” announcements

Here’s a look at everything that is new and announced for the Power Platform at Microsoft Ignite 2022:

Power Automate adds a new AI feature that deciphers natural language for users to describe what they want to automate, and AI will figure out what you want to automate based on your own verbal description. Please note that not all features are ready yet:

  • Anautomation CoE starter kit to help companies establish this practice with greater ease. Along with this, Microsoft is rolling out a new business approvals kit. Both updates are generally available. 

  • Power Automate expressions by example is a new method for generating expressions when creating cloud flows, specifically when it comes to data reshaping. Users will be able to provide an example of how they want their data returned to a flow, and suggested expressions will generate using AI to apply the suggested expression to their cloud flow. This update is in preview. 

  • Native Power Automate integration in Excel will let users access the Automate menu and Excel-specific templates for automation while keeping work within the same Excel menu. This update is in preview. 

Power Pages

In addition, Microsoft updates Power Pages to provide new templates and an enhanced design studio. Here’s a list of the promised features coming to Power Pages:

  • Design Studio helps makers to design multi-step forms in a seamless and effortless way, without code, all within the Design Studio. Makers will also be able to add custom cascading style sheets (CSS), preview site pages on different screen sizes and control when changes go live when publishing sites.   

  • Templates Hub enables 16 new template options. Instead of starting from scratch, users can easily customize the look and feel, model data and extend functionality to solve common industry-specific use cases, including building permits, after-school registrations and meeting scheduling, and extend to Dynamics 365 customer and partner scenarios. 

  • Learn Hub now includes a tutorials section with videos, documents and resources to guide users through site experiences.  

  • Pro-developer tools have been updated to empower makers to use best-in-class Visual Studio (VS) Code Web to edit source code for page content (HTML and Liquid), page styles (CSS) and page scripts (JavaScript).  

  • Security and governance updates include turn-key integration with Azure Web Application Firewall, content delivery network (CDN) support with Azure Front Door, support for custom domains and added support for new Microsoft Dataverse data types for makers and professional developers. 

  • Licensing model simplifies the model from daily sign ins and page views to monthly authenticated and anonymous users. Power Pages will be available through pre-paid, capacity-based subscriptions and pay-as-you-go meters. 

But as these features largely remain “in preview” it’s hard to forecast when they will actually be made generally available by Microsoft. Rather than bore you will a list of features “coming soon,” Microsoft would prefer that you learn more about this update by contacting the Microsoft Media and Analyst Events Team.

Did you think Microsoft Ignite 2022 was a dud this year? Tell us why or why not in the comments.