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  • Writer's pictureRedCloud Consulting

Top New Features in Power Apps

This year, Power Apps has released some amazing features, with even more to come throughout the year. Although September isn’t quite over, there have been some great announcements, and we’ve highlighted our favorites below.

Also if you missed the August Power Apps updates, check out the Microsoft blog here.​

Power Fx: Introducing ParseJSON

Anyone who has worked with JSON in Power Apps knows this new feature is going to make a huge difference. Originally, when you needed to work with JSON in Power Apps, you either had to write complex formulas or use Power Automate to parse JSON and write data back to Power Apps. 

Power Fx: Introducing Named Formulas

Many Excel users have been able to learn Power Apps formulas quickly due to Power FX being the language used in Excel. Many features and concepts have been introduced and now another great Excel tool, Name Manager, is coming to Power Apps as Named Formulas. 

Named Formulas are defined formulas that remain up-to-date in the App.Formulas property. An easy way to understand them is if you think about Global Variables. For example, if you have global variables set in the OnAppStart property and you want to update them in your app, you would have to use a control or action to update that variable when you need to change the values. With Named Formulas, they can reference table values and control properties and they always remain up-to-date without having to update manually.

Some advantages of using Named Formulas

  • The formula’s value is always available.  There is no timing dependency, no App.OnStart that must run first before the value is set, no time in which the formula’s value is incorrect.  Named formulas can refer to each other in any order, so long as they don’t create a circular reference.  

  • The formula’s value is always up to date.  The formula can perform a calculation that is dependent on control properties or database records, and as they change, the formula’s value automatically updates.  You don’t need to update the value as you do with a variable manually.  

  • The formula’s definition is immutable.  The definition in App.Formulas is the single source of truth, and the value can’t be changed somewhere else in the app.  With variables, it is possible that some code unexpectedly changes a value, but this is not possible with named formulas. That doesn’t mean a formula’s value needs to be static – it can change – but only if dependencies change.

  • The formula’s calculation can be deferred.  Because its value it immutable, it can always be calculated when needed, which means it need not actually be calculated until it is actually needed. If the value is never used, the formula need never be calculated.​

Creator Kit – Efficiently create performant Fluent UI based Power Apps

Initially released in May, the Creator Kit has gotten some great feature updates and now includes 24+ Fluent UI controls and templates for Power Apps makers to create apps faster and with great UX/UI Design. 

The Creator Kit can be used for both Model-Driven and Canvas apps. 

Here are some other top features to take a look at:

Beyond September, there will be more Power Platform updates and features to come throughout the next few months in the 2022 Release Wave 2

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