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Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

Help understanding powerapps license changes October 2019

Can anybody shed any light on the new PowerApps licensing plans? I'm having trouble wrapping my head around what is going on.

I specifically went out last year and purchased a number of Office 365 premium licenses as well as the F1 plan for employees in the field, so that we could use powerapps.


I am using a combination of an Azure SQL database(pay as you go license) and SharePoint (under the 365 licensing) to function as the back end for my apps.

Am I now no longer going to be able to develop and distribute Apps to my employees under these licenses? Am I now being asked by microsoft to go out and buy more licenses specific to PowerApps?


Hope this is the right place to ask the 365 messages aren't very clear.

100 REPLIES 100
Not applicable

Raise a ticket with Microsoft and hopefully they will sort this out quickly. 

Advocate I
Advocate I

Time to unload some anger here:

Arrrrrrrrrgggggggghhhh !!!!!!


We have many hundreds of users with Office 365 E3 Plan which includes PowerApps for Office 365

We have PowerApps with SQL Connectors in use with Azure SQL. One is used by hundreds of users worldwide.


I have been evangelising PowerApps throughout our organisation for over a year now. I have invested endless hours learning and developing PowerApps.  I was about to organise a three day on-site PowerApps training for 4 digitalisation guys to recruit them for PowerApps development.


Then this week I see this stupid Premium Diamond beside a new SQL Connector in a new App I was developing. Hmm strange never saw that before. How about a Plan 2 Trial? Yeah whatever Next Next.


Now MS go and change the SQL connector to premium and want 40$ per user per month. Nice way to try to make 100K Dollars from me. This is disgraceful money grabbing behaviour from MS. Tactics like bait and switch / cheap crack for everybody then extort extort extort. The took the Power out of my PowerApps and want to charge me through the nose to get the Power back.


Existing Apps with SQL connector before 1 October 2019 will work for 4 years.

I was about to clean up my mess of test and old PowerApps with SQL connectors.

Good thing that I did not. I have 3 test PowerApps with SQL connectors.

These things are worth their weight in gold now. I will use them for some planned apps I promised, then dump them all before 2024.


It is now cheaper to pay external people to make Apps.

PowerApps is dead to me now.


Cheers MS

Impactful Individual
Impactful Individual

@chchrlam  They may not have intended this but I see this as a going out of business pricing strategy.  They priced PowerApps so it has no practical value for most companies.  Azure SQL DB is a great solution for PowerApps.  It has SSMS support, can be accessed in Azure Function apps, Accessed in Excel and Word etc... The only downside is it doesn't support triggers (needs to be fixed). Paying $40/month/user is absurd for a user that uses several apps a few times a year.  If they were serious about PowerApps they would do a consumption based pricing model like Azure Functions apps.  The more you use it the more you pay.  I've lost interest in PowerApps.  However, I am interested in a new MS technology called Blazor.  They have an interesting roadmap.

Advocate I
Advocate I

so glad its not just me that has been left wondering about these crazy price hikes


Community Champion
Community Champion


My understanding for the fixed price point rather than consumption based pricing is that the decision-makers MS thinks it is targeting will not want to try to monitor or predict variable pricing/usage.

I only see relatively high-value apps as justifying the $10/app/user/month charge. The issue here is that I'm having doubts about the current suitability of PowerApps in that space. In the last couple of weeks I've had two production apps break (become unusable) due to separate backend changes (changes to how the Explicit Column Selection feature is implemented and when the OnChange event fires) requiring urgent investigation, modification and re-publishing to keep users working.

Given the new pricing and recent instability, it is easy to make the argument to pay more up-front for development on platforms that are more stable, support devops, allow multi-user development, are easier to test and not subject to future licensing changes (e.g. Blazor, Xamarin, etc).

PowerApps will remain great in the citizen developer space for relativelys simple low-mid value apps that can function on the non-premium tier (i.e. no SQL, no calls via http or to most of the Azure services), but IMO will be a poor choice for more sophisticated, more critical Apps, which is a real shame as I think there was a tremendous opportunity for PowerApps to become a player in that space.

I reckon if they just included an additional run-only premium per-user license in the Office 365 E5 plan and made the same available as a stand-alone for maybe $3 per month or something like that we'd all be happy to pay that across the whole org and also stump up the $10 or $40 p/m for the power user/pro developers to build the premium solutions.


The normal user/citizen developers could build standard apps, but also still run the ones the Power Apps dev team or consultants are publishing that connect to corporate and 3rd party data sources.


It's not that wild a suggestion really, given they already do a run-only seeded plan that comes with Office 365 F1.

I agree Will, however, that defeats the entire premise that Microsoft has been touting for the Power Apps and Flow products... That every day users can create and revolutionize their business without the need for costly developer software and developer skill sets.  By making this part of the standard license, it was like dangling that fruit out there for the tech-savvy employees to jump in and change their world.  I would be much happier paying one price for Dev access and Use-only access being much cheaper.  ... or ... just make the SQL connector back to being standard and not premium...

You're right, it does go seem to against the ethos of the Power Platform to have a run-only license. I think they need to recognise the fact though, there are different groups of citizen developer.

I'm a consultant and I get paid by customers to develop apps for them. While what I'm doing is beyond the capability of most citizen developers because of the time I spent investing in the skill set, I still sort of think of myself as a citizen developer because I have never done any full code development before (I was an infrastructure solutions architect previously).

They have built a platform that has the tooling needed to build highly complex and professional solutions, way beyond what John in accounts will ever realise, because he has a job to do and a family at home that takes all his time, or maybe he's not that technically minded.

Why should John in accounts cost the same to have access to the platform as me, when John might only need to run a couple or three apps he didn't even build, that hit a 3rd party API or access data from a SQL db once in a blue moon when he uses them, while I'm working full time in there (and no Microsoft, that's not an invitation to put the price up further!)


Thanks for your insights and also your videos (Paul O'F got me started on PowerApps)

You are right about stability and suitability for production. I one had a very simple UWP Win 10 IoT Core app on 6 Raspberries break on me one after another from windows updates. Two days later they were all replaced with a raspbian variant.

I also had some unexplainable PowerApp errors that magically started working again the next day.

It seems like MS treat production like a sandbox at times.


Do you have any plans for some blazor or xamarin with SQL videos by any chance?


Advocate V
Advocate V

A client has just made me aware of this solution https://tray.io/pricing.  Has anyone tried it?

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