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Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

New PowerApps and Flow Licensing coming October 1, 2019

If you haven't seen the announcement yet about the Licensing changes that are coming to PowerApps and Flow starting on October 1, 2019 you really need to read the following Blog. This announcement was originally made at Inspire this year, but has undergone a number of significant changes.  Make sure you read this and understand what it means to you and your organization.

https://powerapps.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/new-licensing-options-for-powerapps-and-flow/



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160 REPLIES 160


@rorybi wrote:

Good comments Fred - I think that the licensing offered really is unfit for large organisations - they are going to have to do a lot better to deal with this audience.


Funny thing is : small organisations feel exactly the same Smiley LOL. I deal with both SMB and multinational enterprises, and I've yet to hear someone say it's a great value proposition...

It's still too early to tell and I'm still trying to wrap my head around all this like many others.

I have no idea what my employer will or won't do in regards to the new licensing just yet.

I have no involvment in the decision making in regards to licensing.

 

I have been a PowerApps Champion in my organization for almost two years now and based on my reccomendations, posts, and tutorials, other departments have or are starting to develop with the PowerApp platform as well.

 

I will still reccomend PowerApps for SharePoint list forms but with this new licensing it will be a hard sell on other types of app development.

 

Based on my past experience I suspect within our organization that PowerApps will now be restricted to SharePoint list forms only as replacement for InfoPath.

 

The majority of the mobile versions of PowerApps will most likely be eliminated.

I will need to refactor, I mean port over to another platform, all PowerApps that rely on connectors.

 

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not abandoning the platform, but I forsee that more than likely I will be developing with PowerApps much less due to these license changes.

Going forward, since I've also been developing internal department apps with REACT, Angular and .NET for several years now,

If there is any fallout, and there will be, from the new PowerApps licensing, I'll just start developing more web and SharePoint apps with Angular, REACT and .NET 

 

Not yet sure about Flow, but given that the majority of apps I develop have to be made available to all employees worldwide. The number of employees could be over a 100,000 contractors, fulltime and temporary workers at any given time, Flow will be restricted as well. 

 

As for developing mobile apps, I can always get back up to speed on SWIFT if need be. We are an iOS only house.

 

PowerApps is a wonderful platform to develop with, it has been a pleasure working in this environment.

I truly believe there is no easier nor faster way to develop and that you Microsoft should be able to make money from it.

But I also agree with everyone else on this forum that this is too drastic a change.

 

My department and I suspect our other deparments will follow, All PowerApps projects that require connectors, that require data sources other than SharePoint will be terminated and evaluated to see if we wish to port to another platform or just shelved, which is a shame.

 

 

pulsebeat
Advocate IV
Advocate IV

Powerapps, for us - and probably for many - is (was) a great tool for developing spot solutions that significantly improve manual, admin, paper-based processes.  For example, in the past our employees would request reimbursement for attending a conference by completing a form and emailing it to Finance.  Using Powerapps, this can now do this online.  Flow sends out alerts, tracks approval status, etc.  The data is saved in SQL rather than in a binder and can therefore be used for many other purposes. 

 

Very nice and clearly an improvement.  But how much of an improvement?  What is the dollar value of that improvement?  We have perhaps 20 of these solutions now, with more in the works.  Everything from identifying employee skills, to assigning desks.  But what is key here is that none of these are business related or critical in any way.  None add to our revenue or materially help our revenue generators do their jobs better or more efficiently.  And to be frank, our leadership is not all that concerned about the few minutes of admin time these apps save.   When we do need a business critical solution, we do what everyone else does.  We buy it or in rare cases, we unleash our crack team of programmers to build it.  Using Powerapps to build core business apps would be a very bad idea – it’s buggy, slow, limited functionality, on and on. 

 

So imagine what it was like when I went to leadership and said, “hey, you know those cool little apps that allow people to register for conferences, include CPR as a skill, and update their address….well they will now cost you a quarter million annually to run. “    I literally had to pull up the Microsoft licensing page to convince them I wasn’t kidding or insane. 

Anonymous
Not applicable

Not that I think anything will come from it, but I thought I would add to the discontent.  I have been casting vision over the last year for how PowerApps could work into a microservices architecture that is being developed.  We were talking about employee portals that would have an app catalog with access to all of the relevant services.  I have been loving PowerApps and Flow and the idea of citizen development.  I've been actively promoting these in our company.  If I am understanding this correctly, this change is going to cost near a million dollars a year for our company.  As much as I love PowerApps, the only obvious choiced is to completely scrap everything aside from the most basic SharePoint list replacements and move into another tool.  I'm really disappointed by this. 

Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

I understand the sentiment, but for the record there is more included in the seeded license than just the list replacement forms in SharePoint.  Any standalone App or Flow that uses SharePoint or OneDrive as a data source is also included. I suspect your ananlysis is still true since the kind of services architecture you are describing probably includes custom connectors and those just went from $7 per user to $40.



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You have a hard job @Pstork1 (especially since it's not an "official" one !). But kudos on keeping the postive side on ! :slightly_smiling_face:

Cheers !

I FEEL your pain. Thiscould be a killer for our plans as well. There's just no way to justify this cost. I was in LOVE with this solution and platform and we were 100% on board and cheerleading this solution. Also using Azure SQL, 12 apps so far, with many, many more in the pipeline. 

seanbrogan
Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

Well I've sent my weekend working (Thanks for that too btw Microsoft!) on moving our existing app over to Sharepoint Lists, since I hadn't seen the 5 year grandfather clause. I've managed to get it working for the most part but one thing I have learned is that SP will not be suitable for the further apps we have planned. The non delegable tables are almost impossible to work with.

That kills Powerapps completely for us. There can be no further development on the platform. Such a pain since I sold the whole concept to the company myself and it had been a really big hit up until now.

 

I will now be recomending the next app, and the current app, are outsourced to a third party. At this point I don't even want Microsoft handling my emails. 

Anonymous
Not applicable

I do see that the seeded license is still going to have a fair amount of functionality, but only for small scale apps.  There are two things that are really hurting me here.  One is that they are moving SQL into a paid connector.  This kills my ability to interact with any other enterprise level applications without going into custom connectors and hitting the same wall.  The other thing that is hurting me is that they are pulling PowerApps licenses out of the D365 licenses.  (This is my understanding from the cryptic information I have read)  We have thousands of those licenses and use them when needed to get the P2 plan.  So we'll keep building apps, but they'll target small groups and not be able to connect to enterprise data.  I had really hoped that we would be able to make PowerApps a true part of our application infrastructure, but not for a million dollars a year.  We are feeling the same thing from the flow side of the house.  We were about to start creating some pretty cool workflows, but it just isn't feasible now.  

 

To add an attempt at being constructive, I resonate with the folks that would prefer a pay per use type approach.  We deploy apps to over 3000 users.  Because we create micro-apps some of these apps may be used 2-20 times per day, but they have to be deployed to the whole company.  I wish there was a way to let everyone have access but not be carrying a $40/user/month price tag if they don't engage with the tool.

Does anyone know how long Microsoft will let us use BCS to connect to Azure SQL?  This connection works in PowerApps but I am afraid to re-create my apps using connections to external lists until I know how long its going to be around.  I know they have said no further development is being done but they have articles written this year showing how to use it in current SharePoint online version.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/manage-business-connectivity-service-applications

Does anyone know if there is a time bomb on this as well?  I cannot use Azure Sql if its only going to work until 2024...

Still looking for a workaround for this that doesnt cost $40 per user per month...

@Audrie-MSFT 

Wat I don't get is why only allow 2 apps on the first-tier model ($10/user). What is that about? You cannot build too complex apps in PowerApps like you can with Visual Studio. We have built many small apps to tackle the business needs for the company accessing their SQL database. With the P1 license, even though you paid $7.00 / user, you had access to all the apps. So now my users can only access two of them? Why?

 

And that reaises a question: Can I then pay $5.00 / user under the Office365 Business license so my users can have access to all apps and the $10.00 /user on the powerApps side will take care of the SQL connector? If that is so, why would anyone buy the $40.00? and if that is not so, why would anyone go from $10.00 to $40.00 just to access different apps within the organization?

Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

Most of the D365 plans still include a seeded license that covers the premium features, that hasn't changed.  



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CurtisJohnson89
Frequent Visitor

Just to add my two cents; 

 

It makes it really tricky for us to move forward, we have only created canvas apps using SharePoint (thank god), but we were right in the middle of planning a rollout to 800 users with a series of apps using SQL (following the advice to chunk down the apps).

 

I get that the PowerApps team need to pull in some money and that the O365 licence fee may not cut it if they want to ramp it up to the next level - but to make this feasible for our company it would cost like £5K a month for two apps and £20K a month for unlimited apps - so yeh for that kind of money we could start an in house development team - then we can make our own rules, apps and do whatever we want, so it wouldn't make sense to do this. 

 

Another thing that strikes me as interesting is that coding and developing in general will get easier and easier as we go forward - with prices like these, it has made me wonder after all the pain and bugs and issues to get PowerApps working the way that I wanted it to (and still be a the mercy of licencing changes), why don't I just pick up coding for real - I am half way there! - sure its way more complicated - I know, but that won't stop people, have you seen VS2019? : ).

 

In my mind the whole workforce is moving slowly in a direction where coding will be way more common place than it is now, and (in my view) there may be a world where developing the canvas app from scratch is just quicker, cheaper and better. And moves like this where everything just gets expensive - simply nudges people in DIY direction. 

 

The potential and price-point of powerapps inspired thousands to learn a new skill and spend hours and hours working on issues, creating communities, working together, and helping each other - the pricepoint has now changed, but to me that is a critical part of what allowed all this great stuff to happen, and if that's gone. then it won't be long before something else comes along to take its place. 

 

@Pstork1  - many Kudos for your solid answers on this post, much respect. 

 

And Microsoft - you have created awesome products and your approach has been spot on up to this point, I hope that this continues either way this goes down. 

 

 

KeesToor
Advocate II
Advocate II

Sadly I will have to voice the exact same story as many of you in this growing community...
Our +200 staff department has found great success in working with PowerApps during the past 2 years - As we have found it to be an agile and reliable solution in order to serve a bunch of appreciated "micro wins" in everyone's day-to-day work. Currently, we are using +10 standalone apps, +5 apps embedded in PBI, 18 Active Flow's, and about 5 Connectors (that will become Premium). 

Unfortunately, due to the reveal of the new licensing agreement, we simply can't justify the cost of developing PA's and Flow's any further. And even with the (very confusing) grandfather/seeder program, just the complexity/hassle of keeping track of all the individual different licences needed, in return for creating/using Apps that will slightly improve efficiency, truly defeats the purpose of what we thought PowerApps and Flow's were all about. Thus- Unless MS reconsiders, or at least makes it once again free use for the End-users, our company will not move forward with working in this great platform any longer.

Still does not answer the question if I can bypass the 2-app limit with an Office365 license.

 

In other words, with an Office365 license it seems that I can create and share as many apps as I want with my business partners (let's say using SharePoint as the underlying database).

 

Now, to connect to an Azure database, I need to pay $10.00 / user to connect to it. Fine. Let's say I do that. So my 100 users can connect to this Azure database.

 

But I do not want to be limited to two Apps, I have many more than 2 apps being shared with my users, and I don't want to pay $40.00 / user for that. I am already paying my Office365 license which gives me the right (so I thought) to develop and share as many apps as I want/need. The $10.00 PowerApps license should be just to get to this premium connector.

 

But if I can pay $5.00 / user to get Office365 and get all the apps developed and shared, then it seems to make no sense in ever needing to pay $40.00 / user for PowerApps.

 

So is Microsoft saying that only two Apps can connect to a premium connector? In other words, the PowerApps 2-apps license will supersede the Office365 unlimited Apps in PowerApps if connected to a premium connector?

 

I am starting to wonder if the person who came up with this new license the same who came up with Windows 8.

The two app limit is of course so they can make more money. Either you purchase another $10 licenses for two more apps or fork over $40 dollar for unlimited - it's a steal! MS got greedy that's all - as the Power Platform gained traction they see an opportunity for payback. In a sense I understand them, but they could have moderated their greed somewhat.

seanbrogan
Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

@KeesToor 

Couldn't agree more. I would be happy to pay a significant increase for a 'developer' lecense that our app makers were required to have in order to creatte apps.

 

But $10 per app per end user is nothing short of rediculous.


@Pstork1 wrote:

Most of the D365 plans still include a seeded license that covers the premium features, that hasn't changed.  


I think most of the people here are on PowerApps and those D365 licenses are truly expensive - it makes the new PowerApps license scam seem like a steal!

AlexN
Responsive Resident
Responsive Resident

Really not the best move from Microsoft. And it's not just about what and how it will change, but it seems to me that 2 weeks before the changes will be active they still don't know for sure what exactly will be the changes. In every call with a current or potential customer i can only tell them "There are are going to be chances, but I can't exactly tell you which" and looking on the potential impact on the license costs, this is in most cases a point where we just can't sell any more apps atm. And working as a consultant and not being able to tell your customers what the product will cost in TWO weeks, how do you think this makes you look?

Here's an article I find quite clear (albeit a bit depressing ^^). Hope this helps.
https://collab365.community/powerapps-licence-changes-in-terms-that-matt-weston-understands/

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