Create an app from PowerApps templates

Templates are quick ways to create apps that use connected data sources. In addition to our current templates, ‘Budget Tracker’ and ‘Site Inspection’, today we're releasing two new templates: ‘Cost Estimator’ and ‘Service Desk’. Our goal is to offer a variety of templates you can choose from and customize to create an app that meets your needs. This blog post offers guidance on choosing the right template, walks you through the steps to create an app from a template, and shows you how to clear sample data so you can make the app your own.

Getting Started

Check out this detailed article to follow step by step instructions for creating your app from a template. I can summarize it into these 6 steps:

  1. Install PowerApps Studio from the Windows Store, and login with your work or school account.
  2. On New, select a 'Phone layout' or 'Tablet layout' option under 'App templates'. Note that whether you choose phone or tablet layout, your app will always run in a web browser.

NewAppFromTemplate

  1. Select one of the templates (e.g., 'Budget Tracker', 'Site Inspector', ‘Cost Estimator’ or ‘Service Desk’). Note that you can preview the screens of each template before using it. I encourage you to browse through the list of templates and look through different screens to determine which one best fits your needs.

Templates

  1. Configure a connection if you haven’t done so, or switch to use a different connection by clicking on ‘Change’. This is the connection to a storage account such as Dropbox, One Drive, or Google Drive, where you will give us the access to place an Excel file. The Excel file contains sample data that the template uses.

Connection

  1. Once you establish a connection and select a template, click 'Use'. PowerApps will copy an Excel file to your selected storage account and generate the app from the template you have chosen.
  2. Run the app, customize it to your needs, save it and share with your team or organization.

What are the benefits of creating an app using templates?

There are many ways to create an app, from your data or from scratch. However, using templates gives you some advantages:

  • Pre-built layouts and color schemes for different app screens that you can directly use or clone.
  • Learn how controls are being configured for common actions, such as how to submit data from a form by clicking on a button, how to transition from one app screen to the other, how to show a list of items from my data, etc.
  • Learn how data flows in and out of your app and how to wire up your data source to your app.
  • Learn how camera or GPS are being integrated into your app.

 

How do I remove the sample data and use my own data?

There are two ways you can remove the sample data from the app you created from a template. For example, I have created and saved and app from the 'Budget Tracker' template. I can remove the sample data by one of the two options below.

  1. Option 1: Run the app and use the delete functionality within the app to remove sample data
    • On the home screen of 'Budget Tracker', select a budget that comes from sample data such as 'Team events at Contoso'

    BudgetTrackerHome

    • Click on trash can at top right corner to delete the budget.

    Delete

    • Repeat this process until all budgets are deleted.

    DataCleared

  1. Option 2: Go directly to the Excel file in the storage location you chose and remove the data from there. This method is quicker and more efficient.
    • Assuming I use Dropbox as the storage location to store sample data for my template. I will go to http://www.dropbox.com and sign in to my account.
    • At the root of my Dropbox account, there should be a folder called 'PowerApps' already created.

DropboxPowerApps

  • Click on folder 'PowerApps' then the nested folder 'Templates'.

DropboxTemplates

  • You will see a folder with name prefix 'Budget Tracker' followed by a GUID or you may see many folders with the name prefix 'Budget Tracker'. Each time you create an app from template, a folder for that template is created for you on the storage account you choose. If you have many folders for the same app, open the most recent one and click open that folder.

DropboxBudgetTracker

  • You will see a file named data.xlsx that contains sample data for the 'Budget Tracker' app created from template. Go ahead and open this file in Excel. 

DropboxData

  • You will now see all the tables that contain data for the 'Budget Tracker' app created from template. Notice tables 'Budgets', 'Expenses', 'Categories', 'Receipts', and 'ExpenseByCategory'. You can remove all the data row from 'Budgets', 'Expenses', 'Receipts' and 'ExpenseByCategory' tables. For 'Categories' table, you can modify the row to enter the expense categories that are more related to you or keep it the same.

ExcelBudget

  • This should clear out all sample data. You can go back to PowerApps and re-open the app you created from 'Budget Tracker' template.

DataCleared

 

Further assistance

If you have more questions about our templates after reading this blog post, post a question or join a conversation on our community. Provide any of the following information to help us suggest the right template for your needs or tell us your idea for new templates that we can implement for you:

  • What is your app for?
  • What are the most important features you are looking for?
  • Do you want an image heavy app?
  • If your focus on form, text, images, videos, or others?
  • Any example of other apps you are using for inspiration?

Find out more at our learning center.