Microsoft has published their Wave 2 2022 release, which gives us a list of new features across Power Platform and Dynamics 365 we can look forward to. I’m highlighting my 5 top picks for Power Platform here (not in any particular order), but if you can access the full list of features from these links:

1. Power Automate: Improved experience for editing expressions and selecting dynamic values

This one is broken up as 2 new features, and is something you could be using already.

This makes it easier to see your expressions as you type them out in Power Automate. As you type it out, you can even switch to the dynamic values tab to insert them in your expression just by clicking on it. This experience is something you can enable, and I’ve been using it already- it makes writing expressions so much better!

To turn on the new experience, click on Settings > View all Power Automate settings while in Power Automate.

Screenshot of clicking on settings within Power Automate

Then turn ON Experimental Features.

Screenshot of turning on Experimental Features in Power Automate

Your expression editor will look like this, which is especially useful for those long expressions that reference dynamic values.

Screenshot of the new expression/dynamic value experience in Power Automate

2. Power Virtual Agents: Use Power FX expressions in authoring canvas

BIG changes coming to Power Virtual Agents. It looks like we’ll start to see these in Public Preview very soon. The ability to use Power Fx expressions in the authoring canvas of our bots is just one aspect of the changes coming.

This feature will allow you to extend logic in your bot. Let’s say you wanted people to make bookings via your bot, but your bot can only take bookings for dates within the next 2 weeks. With Power Fx, you could work this logic into the conversation and have your bot respond/act differently based on the date the user has selected. It will open up a lot of doors for what we can achieve with our Power Virtual Agents.

You can take a closer look at this and all the other changes coming to PVA in this Microsoft Blog post. There will also be the ability to add images, GIFs and videos in your conversations without Power Automate or Bot Framework Composer, insert adaptive cards, trigger actions based on user responses (like open up a webpage or play a video), and add message variations.

3. Power Pages: New templates

Have you tried out Power Pages yet? You can sign up for a trial here. It’s the rebrand/level-up of Power Apps Portals, which allows you to create websites. There are 3 templates currently available, which allow you to get started building your website quickly.

And, we’ll be getting 2 new templates around October this year:

  • Permit application submission
  • New employee onboarding
Screenshot of 2 new templates coming to Power Pages

4. Power Apps: Access forms within a form

The official name of this feature is View form updates to command bar, business process flow, header, and tabs. In model driven apps, you will have the ability to open another record on the same page of the record you’re currently viewing. This is a screenshot of what it’s expected to look like:

Screenshot of a model driven app displaying the new feature

For example, you might be viewing the record of a particular account. From this form, you might also want to take a look at the associated contact. If you click on the contact, rather than navigating to another page, you can view and interact with the contact record while still on the same account form.

5. Power Apps: Responsive layouts for custom pages

Custom pages give you the flexibility of bringing canvas app-type pages to your model driven apps, to create what’s called a converged app. The new feature arriving will be: Custom pages are responsive by default with rich layouts. Currently, when you create a custom page you need to manually add in the ability to make the page responsive, i.e. design it so that the page scales with the screen size you are viewing it on, such as adapting to a mobile view.

The features release will include more tools to support the creation of responsive apps, such as responsive layout templates.

Screenshot of custom page designer in Power Apps, showing the responsive template layouts

What were your favourite features to be announced as part of Wave 2 2022?

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