An Overview of Power Platform 2020 Release Wave 2 Plans.

The 2020 Release Wave 2 plans are now available for Dynamics 365 and the Power Platform. The new features and capabilities, that will be covered below, will roll out from October 2020 through to March 2021. 

We have already covered the Dynamics 365 plans, which you can read here. So within this article, we will provide an overview of the changes coming to the Power Platform; Power BI, Power Apps and Power Automate.

Again, this is an overview (the release notes are fairly large documents!) but if you’d like to learn more you can access the full release plan from Microsoft.  

In this blog we cover the following areas (click on one to skip to that section):

  1. Wave 2 Release Dates 
  2. Power BI Key Features 
  3. Power Apps Key Features
  4. Power Automate Key Features 
  5. Full Release Notes 

Wave 2 Release Dates

Early access for those features which are enabled, will be available from August 3rd 2020This allows administrators to test the new capabilities before they get enabled automatically. From October 1st 2020, general availability will be deployed and will continue until March 2021. 

2020 Release Wave 2 Timeline

Key Features

Power BI

Within the upcoming release, Microsoft are focusing on three key areas within Power BI to help businesses get more from their data: creating amazing data experiences, meeting the needs of large enterprise customers, and furthering insights for decision-making. 

  • Power BI Desktop

With each release, Microsoft Power BI Desktop continues to build on the simple, intuitive experiences they deliver to customers. Some of main features of Wave 2 are: 

  • On-canvas watermarks

If you’re new to Power BI, it can be difficult to know where to start. This new feature provides on-canvas watermarks which guide new users when using Power BI Desktop.

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Power Automate visual

Sometimes the actions that users want to take, based on the insights found in Power BI, can happen outside of Power BI (e.g., send a note, create a task, copy the data). By introducing a Power Automate visual, users are now able to embed a button directly into a report that can be used to trigger a flow. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Small multiple visuals

Small multiple visuals (or trellising) splits a visual into multiple versions of itself, then presents this data side-by-side. This eases comparison between different categories of a dataset. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Power BI Mobile

Microsoft understand the importance of being able to access and gain insights from your business data, anytime, anywhere. The main feature of Wave 2 for Power BI Mobile is: 

  • Split view support for iPad

Customers using the Power BI mobile apps on iPad, are now able to view multiple Power BI items side-by-side. With split view, users can open more than one app window and compare what they see for a better understanding of their data. 

*This feature is available for early access. 

Power Apps

The 2020 Release Wave 2 brings significant improvements for Power Apps developers, aiming to improve the usability of apps that are created across the web and mobile devices. 

  • Power Apps Portals
  • Power Virtual Agents as a component

Portal makers can drag and drop a Power Virtual Agents bot component on their portal, similar to the Power BI component. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Power Apps component framework control support

Power Apps component framework enables app makers to create code components to use across apps. This new feature supports code components created using Power Apps component framework, inside Power Apps portals. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Apps on a unified platform
  • Makers can add a custom page in the model-driven app designer

Users can now build custom pages into their model-driven app, enabling more flexibility in the components, behaviour and visuals. They are also to use PCF controls in the model-driven app designer, in ways that are not possible with the model-driven app form and dashboard pages. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Interact with emails in mobile app

Users will be able to create, edit, send, and reply to emails using the Power Apps mobile app for both canvas and model-driven apps. 

*This feature is available for early access. 

Power Automate

Within the 2020 Release Wave 2, the main areas of focus for Power Automate  are: integrations with other Power Platform products and Microsoft Teams, and new UI flow capabilities. 

  • Smoother integration between Power Automate and Power Apps

Currently, the integration between Power Apps and Power Automate can be a little challenging when it comes to building more robust applications. This new feature provides an integrated solution that utilises existing Power Automate widget solutions, to onboard users and more easily add a flow into a canvas app, from within the studio experience. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Integration with Microsoft Teams

Templates provided for administrators and makers to build common processes (such as recruitment and holiday management) directly from within applications such as Microsoft Teams, allowing the experience to be customised to fit their needs. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • New UI flows capabilities

Templates provided for administrators and makers to build common processes (such as recruitment and holiday management) directly from within applications such as Microsoft Teams, allowing the experience to be customised to fit their needs. 

*This feature is not available for early access. 

  • Add delay actions to UI flows

With this feature, makers can add delay actions wherever they are needed in UI flows. Add the delay action wherever your UI flows need additional time, to get the application into the correct state.

*This feature is available for early access. 

  • Improved management and monitoring for UI flows

This new feature enables makers to have a consolidated view of their UI flows, to help identify error patterns and troubleshoot issues. 

*This feature is available for early access. 

The Full 2020 Release Wave 2 Notes

Within this article we have given you an overview of some of the new features being rolled out across the Power Platform, however, there are plenty more. You can access the full document here. 

The 2020 Wave 2 Release also brings new features to Dynamics 365. Read more about that here. 

If you have any questions about this release, or would like more information about Dynamics 365 or the Power Platform, please contact us. Fill out the contact form below and a member of our team will be in touch shortly, or if you’d prefer, email us at [email protected] or call us on 01908 038110.