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What’s new: Power Apps September 2022 Feature Update

Headshot of article author Clay Wesener

Welcome to the Power Apps monthly feature update! We will use this blog to share a summary of product, community, and learning updates from throughout the month so you can access it in one easy place. A variety of new and highly anticipated features are now available which we are very excited to share.

These updates are in addition to the announcements already shared the Microsoft Power Platform Conference in September including Cards for Power Apps, Coauthoring, and Maker matching. You can read more about them in Ryan Cunningham’s blog here, Power Apps brings collaboration to center stage with 3 big announcements | Microsoft Power Apps.

Maker Productivity

  • Power Apps supports the new SharePoint list image column type for both read and write 
  • Power Fx: Introducing Named Formulas 
  • Power Fx : ParseJSON function
  • Managing related tables in modern form designer 

End User Productivity

  • Cards for Power Apps
  • Efficiently create performant Fluent UI based Power Apps with the Creator Kit 

Maker Productivity

Power Apps supports the new SharePoint list image column type for both read and write 

We are happy to announce support SharePoint list image columns for both read and write scenarios.  It is currently being deployed and will be in all regions by Oct 7.  Previously we only supported reading images.  But, you can now create a Power App to read, create, update and delete SharePoint column images directly in a Power App.  You can also choose to get either the full version of the image or various thumbnail sizes:  Small, Medium, and Large.  Use specific thumbnail sizes for optimal performance. For example, use Small for a gallery or Medium for a form.  Large images might be used for detailed inspection. 

Power Fx: Introducing Named Formulas 

With Named Formulas, you can simplify your app’s initialization, reduce app load time, reuse logic, and improve the maintainability of your apps. Named Formulas derive from how this feature appears in Excel, in the “Name Manager.” In Excel, you can name any cell and refer to that name throughout the workbook. It adds a level of indirection that allows you to move that cell reference by name rather than by location. And inspiring the introduction into Power Fx, it also allows you to bind a name to a formula that isn’t in a cell.

Today in Power Fx, you write formulas for the properties of the controls in your app. You can refer to those properties from other formulas to reuse the result of calculation. But you are limited by the controls and their properties. What if you could effectively create your own properties, create your own points of reuse?

Learn more at Power Fx: Introducing Named Formulas | Microsoft Power Apps

Power Fx : ParseJSON function

The JSON format has seen widespread adoption in serializing application objects for systems communications and saving of state. Many services today offer RESTful services that communicate via JSON payloads, including services such as SharePoint and Azure DevOps. Power Apps provides a large amount of out of the box connectors, many of which talk to services via JSON and provide Power Fx types as input and output. But there are cases where either a service can provide very dynamic JSON payloads, or the data is provided as text but in practice contains JSON objects.

In 2020 we released an experimental feature called Dynamic Schema which addresses specific scenarios such as custom fields on Azure DevOps work items. The standard connector for Azure DevOps can only know about standard Azure DevOps fields, but a “capture schema” feature allows a maker to have Power Apps capture the output of the connector call and adapt the schema based on what the output provides. A maker can subsequently work with the connector in Power Fx as if the fields were always part of the connector’s schema. This is a fairly static “update” to the schema that can be made when authoring the app.

The experimental release of ParseJSON addresses the other end of the spectrum and provides an important base in the Power Fx language and runtime to bridge the areas in between.

Learn more at Power Fx: Introducing ParseJSON | Microsoft Power Apps

Managing related tables in modern form designer  

Makers can now go ahead and manage related table navigation in the Related tab through modern form designer. With this feature, makers can navigate within the form to view a list of related table rows.  

Learn more at Add relationships in a model-driven app form in Power Apps – Power Apps | Microsoft Learn

End User Productivity

Cards for Power Apps 

A completely new way to design and deliver mini-apps directly inside Microsoft Teams using low code. By embedding essential micro-experiences directly in Teams, you can bring your conversation and workflow together like never before. 

Learn more at What are cards? (Preview) – Power Apps | Microsoft Learn

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Efficiently create performant Fluent UI based Power Apps with the Creator Kit 

The Creator Kit, published by the Microsoft Power CAT team, is a collection of 24+ Fluent UI controls and templates for Power Apps makers to create delightful app experiences more rapidly. All controls and components included in the kit use the Fluent UI framework to help easily create consistent, beautiful, and effective user experiences for custom business applications. We’ve gotten a lot of great feedback since initial release in May, and we announced the stable release of the Creator Kit in September, indicating the components are ready to be used in your production business applications. 

The kit provides many improvements that will impact Power Platform makers, users, and admins: 

  • Makers can focus efforts on building the problem-solving features of an application. The cohesive Fluent UI design makes it easier to make custom pages look more consistent and like model driven apps. You don’t need to be a front-end prodigy – or have budget for a design team – the kit will help you make stunning apps with the latest and most contemporary designs. 
  • Users will interact with the cohesive set of components that are intuitive and familiar (same controls used in all modern Microsoft applications). The components provide a performance boost which also provides a better user experience, which can help users be more productive while using your apps. 
  • Administrators who must govern UI consistency within an organization benefit from the modern theming architecture that Fluent UI provides inherently in the kit’s components. The components are developed and supported by dedicated engineering teams at Microsoft, so companies can deploy apps with Creator Kit components into production with confidence. 

Learn more at Introducing the Creator Kit – Efficiently create performant Fluent UI based Power Apps | Microsoft Power Apps and Set up the Creator Kit – Power Platform | Microsoft Learn

Learning and Doc Updates 

We’ve also released new, and made updates to some of documentation – see a summary before of some of the key updates: 

For AdminsManage PrincipalObjectAccess storage
Finance and operations storage capacity
New Learning Path (6 modules) for Application lifecycle management Application lifecycle management for the Power Platform – Training | Microsoft Learn.
For MakersCards (preview) – low-code micro-apps from Power Apps
Simplified tab index (preview)
Get help building your app from a virtual agent
Power BI content management in Power Apps solutions (preview)
Discover who’s working on an app (preview)
Boolean function in Power Apps
ParseJSON function in Power Apps (experimental)
Untyped object data type (experimental)
Working with JSON (experimental)
Power Platform creator kit (now generally available)
For DevelopersUpdated Web API sample code for .NET to add support for .NET 6 and MSAL
Web API Data operations Samples (C#)
Updated CORS support for SPA app to use MSAL.js
Use OAuth with Cross-Origin Resource Sharing to connect a Single-Page Application
Quickstart: Register and configure a SPA application for Dataverse using msal.js)
Examples to convert OData v2 to Web API

Please continue sending us your feedback on features you would like to see in Power Apps. We hope that you enjoy the update!