Power Platform Overview


Microsoft Power Platform represents an elegant user friendly interface to the diverse sophisticated technologies that are part of the overall Microsoft Stack. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella had said
“For the first time in fact, in our own Microsoft history, we have an extensibility model that is the same for Office 365 and Dynamics 365. This has been a dream of mine for, I don’t know, for 15 years probably. And we are finally here and we are executing super well.”

Comprising the primary components of Power BI, Power Apps, Power Automate and Virtual Agents - the Microsoft Power Platform is 'more than the sum of its parts'.

Power Platform Videos


Power Platform Components


Microsoft Power Platform Videos


Power Platform - More Than The Sum Of Its Parts

Microsoft Power Platform Overview


More than the sum of it’s parts


Connect the components together—and to Office 365, Dynamics 365, Azure, and hundreds of other apps—and build end-to-end business solutions. You can connect to hundreds of data sources using a library of connectors and Dataflex Pro (Common Data Service). The solutions can be customized and extended with Office 365, Dynamics 365, and Azure capabilities.

Power-BI

Power BI

Make informed, confident business decisions by putting data-driven insights into everyone’s hands. Power BI is a business analytics service. It provides interactive visualizations and business intelligence capabilities with a simple interface that enables end users create their own reports and dashboards. Power BI is a collection of software services, apps, and connectors that work together to turn your unrelated sources of data into coherent, visually immersive, and interactive insights.

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Power Apps

Turn ideas into organizational solutions by enabling everyone to build custom apps that solve business challenges. Power Apps is a suite of apps, services, connectors and data platform that provides a rapid application development environment in the form of 'Platform as a Service'. You can build mobile apps having responsive design that run across Android, iOS, Windows (Modern Apps), and on most of the commonly used browsers. Power apps platform comes with Dataflex at no additional cost. You can hence build apps and store your data within a single integrated environment.

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Poweraaps
PowerAutomate

Power Automate

Boost business productivity to get more done by giving everyone the ability to automate organizational processes. Power Automate is a service that enables you create automated workflows between various systems, mobile apps and services. Power Automate enables you synchronize files, get notifications, approve requests, collect data and more. Known formerly as Flow, Power Automate now has included in it Robotic Process Automation (RPA) features that enables you automate repetitive tasks. Power Automate can be used to design logic for Power Apps, without having to write code.

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Power Virtual Agents

Easily build chatbots to engage conversationally with your customers and employees with the Software-as-a-Service of Power Virtual Agents - no coding required. You can sign up easily, create the bot and embed it on your website. It doesn't require any additional infrastructure to maintain. With Power Virtual Agents you can create conversational experiences for your customers and website visitors, with a no-code graphical interface.

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PowerVirtualAgents

Why Microsoft Power Platform for your Business


More than the sum of its parts, the Microsoft Power Platform enables you automate, digitalize, and connect silos of your business applications — with each other, and to Office 365, Dynamics 365, Azure, and hundreds of other apps—to build end-to-end business solutions.

Together, the power components of Power Platform - Power BI, Power Apps, Power Automate and Power Virtual Agents enable businesses to - Analyze, Act, Automate and Iterate. The amazingly powerful no-code/ low-code platform brings to us creative tools and app building solutions that get us quickly connected with our business data & disparate systems, automate processes, enable us get insights and enhance customer responsiveness with virtual agents.

With Power Apps - a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offering - you can build and run applications without having to bother about building & maintaining the app infrastructure. Applications thus developed are responsive and run smoothly on all platforms and devices.

Advantages of Power Platform

  • Data Driven Apps
    • Rapidly creates custom, containerized, no-code / low-code applications that meet different business and user group needs. These apps work on both desktops and mobile devices.
  • Seamless Data Integration
    • Bring data from all your sources from every eco-system into one powerful platform. There is no need for custom components for these integrations. Moreover, you can make this data available to any other application.
  • Cloud Integration
    • Leverage the powerful Azure cloud to integrate and bring all your apps on the powerful cloud platform for stability, security, and scalability.
  • Increased Productivity and Employee Performance
    • Power BI brings the business agility by enabling stakeholders quickly analyze business data. Power Apps provide point solutions for many manually performed processes, and Automate builds the connectivity to get the data from it's point of origination to the point of action.
  • More efficient data input, storage and sharing; improved communication
    • Power Apps give the ability to build simple solutions digitalizing many manual processes. These point solutions enhance performance, and digitalization makes data sharing easy.
  • Built-in connectivity with ~300 cloud services, files, databases and web APIs
    • Power Apps and Automate come with over 300 connectors, grouped as Standard and Premium, to enable us integrate our apps with a host of common cloud services, databases and APIs. The time and cost saving this results in, is massive.
  • Ability to customize and build custom connectors
    • Need to go beyond what Power Apps and Platform provide out-of-the-box? The Power Platform comes with a set of tools to empower you build low-code customizations.
  • On-premises Data Gateway
    • Enables quick integration with on-premises systems
  • Significantly reduced application development cost and time
    • The no-code/ low-code development environment means a dramatically reduced time, and hence cost of development.
  • Cross platform and cross device readiness
    • The apps built are ready for all platforms - iOS, Android, Windows - and for all device types. The apps are also responsive.

Microsoft Power Platform FAQs


What is Microsoft Power Platform?

Power Platform is Microsoft's powerful business applications platform that combines Power BI, Power Apps, Power Automate and Power Virtual Agents. The low-code, no-code platform can leverage Dataflex Pro (formerly called Common Data Services) and enables you to build applications tailored to your business needs. The breadth and depth of what one can do with Power Platform makes it unique and a 'must-have' for organizations modernizing their systems.

What are the components of Microsoft Power Platform?

Power platform has 4 primary components - Power BI, Power Apps, Power Automate and Power Virtual Agents. The other components that are often used with Power Platform are - Dataflex Pro (Common Data Services), AI Builder, and UI Flow (part of Automate).

How is Microsoft Power Apps and Power Automate licensed?

Power Platform components, including Power Apps, Automate and VA can be licensed under - Microsoft Volume Licensing (VL), Cloud Solution Provider program, and/or Web Direct (MOSP). In VL, the products are available through Enterprise Agreement (EA), Enterprise Agreement Subscription (EAS), Server and Cloud Enrollment (SCE) or under the Enrollment for Education Solutions (EES). VL licensing typically requires signing agreement for a minimum purchase. Both VL and CSP are done through an authorized Microsoft Partner.

How much does Microsoft Power Platform cost?

Microsoft Power Platform components are priced separately, and each component has more than one license types. For example, for Power Apps, there is a 'per App' pricing, and a 'per User' pricing. Organizations using a very small number of Apps will prefer going for the 'per App' pricing, and organizations having a large number of Apps in usage would prefer going for 'per User' pricing. Each license type comes with constraints specified for things like storage, etc.

What is Power BI?

Power BI is a business analytics service. It provides interactive visualizations and business intelligence capabilities with a simple interface that enables end users create their own reports and dashboards. Power BI is a collection of software services, apps, and connectors that work together to turn your unrelated sources of data into coherent, visually immersive, and interactive insights.

What is Power Automate?

Power Automate is a service that enables you create automated workflows between various systems, mobile apps and services. Power Automate enables you synchronize files, get notifications, approve requests, collect data and more. Known formerly as Flow, Power Automate now has included in it Robotic Process Automation (RPA) features that enables you automate repetitive tasks. Power Automate can be used to design logic for Power Apps, without having to write code.

What are Power Virtual Agents?

Easily build chatbots to engage conversationally with your customers and employees with the Software-as-a-Service of Power Virtual Agents - no coding required. You can sign up easily, create the bot and embed it on your website. It doesn't require any additional infrastructure to maintain. With Power Virtual Agents you can create conversational experiences for your customers and website visitors, with a no-code graphical interface.

What are Power Apps?

Power Apps is a suite of apps, services, connectors and data platform that provides a rapid application development environment in the form of 'Platform as a Service'. You can build mobile apps having responsive design that run across Android, iOS, Windows (Modern Apps), and on most of the commonly used browsers. Power apps platform comes with Dataflex at no additional cost. You can hence build apps and store your data within a single integrated environment.

How do I use Power Apps per app plans?

The Power Apps per App plan enables organizations to start at a low entry point. The Power App per App plan enables users to run 2 custom applications (canvas, or model, or both), and access 1 custom portal. The per App licenses are stackable. With this plan you get access to all the connectors, utilize Common Data Service, create and access Custom Entities, get 'read' access to some Dynamics 365 entities, Power Automate use rights within the App, 50MB CDS database capacity, 400MB CDS file capacity and a daily API request limit of 1000.

What are the Power Platform Connectors?

A Connector into a service makes the service available to the calling program (user) without having to get into technical details of the implementation or having to write code to achieve integration. These may also be considered as wrappers around the API that allows the underlying service to talk to Power Automate or Power Apps. Each connector comes with its own Actions & Triggers. Power Automate and Apps come with over 300 pre-built connectors from Microsoft. These are in two categories - Standard and Premium. In addition, one can build Custom Connectors. Some of the most common Standard connectors include - Microsoft Office, Outlook, Gmail, Twitter, SharePoint, GitHub etc. Premium connectors include Dynamics 365, Busines Central and Salesforce.

What are the features of Microsoft Power Platform?

Each component of Power Platform has it's own set of features and functionality. The one thing that's common to all is - the ability to build low-code, no-code applications.

What are the benefits of Microsoft Power Platform?

All the components of Power Platform have their own diverse usage and benefits. The one common benefit which all of them provide is - the power they bring to the business users to become citizen developers and start building their own low-code, no-code applications on Power BI, Apps, Automate and VA.

What are the self-service purchase options for the Power Platform products?

The Web Direct (MOSP) programs give customers the self-service purchase options for the Power Platform products.

Do embedded canvas apps in model-driven apps count toward the two-apps limits?

No. Embedded canvas apps within a model driven app will not count towards the two-app limit.

Are full Power Automate capabilities included in Power Apps licenses?

Barring the RPA functionality, the full Power Automate capabilities are included in Power Apps licenses - when used within the context of the Power App. Power Automate use rights included with Power Apps standalone plans do not include RPA functionality, which requires a separate purchase of Power Automate per user with attended RPA plan.

What happens when I use all the data storage, file storage, and flow runs included in my per user licenses?

Additional storage is available at a cost.

Who can buy Microsoft Power Apps and Power Automate plans?

Any organization, other than those specifically refrained by Microsoft or the US government, can buy the Power Platform products.

Do all my users need to be licensed with the same Power Apps plan, or can I mix plans?

No, you don't have to have all users licensed with the same license plan. You can mix and match Power Apps licenses across the users in your organization.

Are there limits on the number of API requests Power Apps and Power Automate users can make?

Yes, your license type determines the Daily API requests limit. For example, Power Apps Per User license has a Daily API Request Limit of 5000. The Power Apps Per App license however has a Daily API Request Limit of 1000. Additional capacity can be purchased.

How to implement Power Platforms in your business organization?

Yes, most certainly. Although it depends on your background, the skills to develop no-code Power Apps can be developed within just a couple of days. The same is true of other components like Power BI, Automate and VA. If you have some programming background, you can also build the low-code apps quickly.

What is the Microsoft Power Platform Solution for Healthcare Emergency Response?

With Covid-19 impacting businesses and humanity, Microsoft has released a Power Platform based Emergency Response Solution to help hospitakls and healthcare providers to better manage communications across their organizations. It helps everyone stay current on beds in use, supplies on hand, and resources needed.

Is it Microsoft power platforms good for business Intellgience?

The Power BI component within Power Platform is easily one of the most advanced business intelligence tools available in the market today. Various analysts, including Gartner, have ranked it at the top.

Is Power Platform part of Office 365?

No, Power Platform is not a part of Office 365. There are however some limited usage rights included with Office 365 licenses to enable users to customize and extend Office 365 for productivity.

How do I find right Microsoft Power Platforms implementation partners for Finance?

If you are a user of Dynamics 365 Finance and now looking to implement components of Power Platform, your best bet is to engage a partner like Alletec - who understand, and have deep experience with, both Dynamics 365 product lines, as well as the Power Platform components. Alletec will ensure you meet your business objectives.

How will power platform change the way I manage identities for user in my organization today?

If your organization does not have a Microsoft 365 environment connected to your email domain, there is no change in how you manage identity. Users will be added to a new, cloud-only user directory, and you will have the option to take over as the Power Platform admin and manage them

How can I easily integrate Microsoft Power Platform?

Integration with other applications is inherent to the components of Power Platform. Microsoft has provided over 300 in-built connectors to integrate with most of the applications we are likely to use. There is also the possibility to develop Custom Connectors. The core purpose of Power Automate is to automate the flow of data between 2 or more systems. Power Apps can also work with Dataflex Pro/ CDS - which is the source of data for most of the D365 CE systems.

How Microsoft Power Platform Implementation can assist your business?

Microsoft Power Platform implementation and usage can be one of the most important steps you take in bringing digital transformation for your business. Power Automate enables you to get your systems connected, thereby helping the elimination of silos of information, and eliminating various manual data transfers. Power Apps enable you to quickly build point applications to automate tasks that are often not enterprise level, but remain manual, thus automating and digitalizing those pieces of data capture. Power Apps also give you the power to view the most important pieces of your information in real-time. Power BI brings to you the Data Analytics and Business Intelligence capabilities, and with Virtual Agents, you can significantly enhance your self-service and customer service experience. When done in a planned, and coordinated manner, Power Platform has the potential to bring around fundamental changes to the way your customers and employees engage with the business, bringing around a paradigm shift to their delight level.

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