From what I can tell LoadData, and SaveData are the only functions that allow you to store, and use dynamic content locally on a device. These two functions are also always suggested when people ask how they can get their apps to work offline.
But in the meantime, maybe it’s possible to improve the way that LoadData, and SaveData work in order to make building offline functionality into apps easier while we wait for the full solution?
My first idea is that there be some way for LoadData to know when the app is launched for the first time on a device, so that it does not give an error when the file that it needs to load does not exist before that file has a chance to be created.
Secondly, it would be great if you can open the app for editing, and load a previously created file into a collection, for instance a file that was made by SaveData the last time that the app ran normally before closing it. With the way the system is currently, it appears that all previously saved information is lost when you open an app for editing in Powerapps studio. Luckily you can load data that was saved during a previous time when the app was running normally. But being able to see what collections you can load from previously created file while editing in Powerapps studio would be extremely useful for trouble shooting.
Lastly, it would be great if the file names in the LoadData, and SaveData functions could work in the same way that many of the other names work in Powerapps, where you start typing a name, and then Powerapps lists suggestions. This will help minimise errors, and frustration caused by miss typing the name of a file that you want to use in SaveDate and LoadData.
So far SaveData, and LoadData have been incredibly valuable when building offline functionality into an app. I appreciate all the work that the Powerapps Team have put into Powerapps, it truly a wonderful system, and I hope that it will continue to grow, and become more capable!
Thanks for providing feedback and helping us prioritizing this! We'll be publishing more examples of how to build offline apps going forward and make many more improvements as well. Please share your examples too.