What are Microsoft Power Pages & What Does it Mean for Power Apps Portals?

Power Pages thumbnail showing a responsive portal on a desktop and mobile app

During its Build 2022 event, Microsoft unveiled Power Pages as the latest addition to the Power Platform.

Power Pages are an evolution of Power Apps portals, featuring a brand-new design studio and templates. The new product provides a low-code way to create, host and manage process-driven secure websites used by customers, partners, communities and other external users.

Power Pages will support all levels of tech fluency, from low-code makers to IT professionals and pro-developers. For example, start from scratch using the low-code design studio, work with fully-featured templates, or use Visual Studio to code advanced capabilities with JavaScript, liquid tags and more.

This post covers a series of frequently asked questions about Power Pages. Click below to skip to the appropriate section.

As with any pre-release product, information is subject to change.

How do Power Pages compare to Power Apps Portals?

Design Studio

A key difference is a new design studio that simplifies the process of building professional portals.

Within the Pages workspace, designers have greater flexibility to design layouts and add components such as images, Power BI reports, tables and forms.

Using the Styling workspace, portal designers have greater control over the visual appearance. Modify each portal's look to publish websites that are consistent with corporate branding, and potentially less need to create CSS.

Editing a web portal section from the Pages workspace in the design studio

Templates

The Power Pages designer includes templates for fully-featured websites with demo data to kick start portal projects.

In the initial Power Pages release, the design studio includes starter templates to support scheduling, registrations, application submissions and progress tracking scenarios.

Five portal templates are currently available. Microsoft expects this to rapidly expand, covering additional repeatable processing scenarios that will enable organisations to deploy new sites quickly.

Examples of prebuilt portal templates for Power Pages

Creating Data Assets

Power Pages publishes external-facing portals that allow web visitors to contextually surface data in real-time.

Portals can present data stored in Dataverse and capture data through web forms stored in Dataverse. For example, using the initial out-of-the-box templates, pages can be published, allowing contacts to book an appointment, check the status of an application or register for an event.

In contrast to Power Apps portals, administrators can apply new tables, fields and views directly within the designer when these assets are created in the Power Pages Data workspace.

Student info table publishes in Power Pages showing contact names and key dates.

What else is new in Power Apps Portals?

Content Delivery Network

For portals with a global reach, Content Delivery Network integration can be enabled with a switch to optimise performance and provide consistent experiences.

A CDN delivers static content to web visitors faster thanks to proximity and optimised connections. Power Pages stores the static portal contents such as images, buttons, style sheets and scripts on CDN servers to serve these to visitors from the nearest network location.

Learning Hub

Power Pages has a dedicated home page featuring an integrated Learning Hub. Explore videos, documents and other resources that make creating the website you want easier.

Responsive Rendering

Power Pages uses the Bootstrap user experience framework for fully responsive rendering without needing to write a line of code.

Using QR codes, easily preview sites with a responsive layout running on a mobile device or desktop.

Learning hub display for Power Pages

What type of websites are published using Power Pages?

Power Pages are for creating websites that automate business processes for people outside an organisation to reduce the time taken to complete tasks and increase efficiency.

Examples can include registering for a warranty, booking an appointment or providing on-demand self-service 24/7.

When are Power Pages available?

Power Pages are available now to try in Public Preview. The product is due to reach general availability later in 2022.

How will Power Apps Portals be migrated to Power Pages?

The Power Pages public preview currently only enables new portal sites to be created.

Later this year, when Power Pages reaches GA, Microsoft says it will be possible to open existing Power Apps portals using the new design studio. When Power Pages becomes generally available, existing configurations within Power Apps portals will automatically be compatible with Power Pages.

How are Power Pages licensed?

Currently, Power Pages is licensed on the same basis as Power Apps portals using authenticated logins and anonymous page views. However, Microsoft has indicated it will announce a new portal licensing model when Power Pages reaches general availability.

As a standalone product, Power Page has no licence dependency on Microsoft Dynamics 365.

How secure are Power Pages portals?

Power Pages runs on Microsoft Azure and is built on the foundation of Power Apps portals to provide critical security capabilities, including advanced encryption and role-based access controls to protect business information.

Many tools and methods to configure Power Pages use the same functionality as Power Apps portals. For example, Power Pages works with popular authentication protocols to control how users sign in and access each site. These identity providers include Azure active directory, Microsoft and Google, and custom providers.

Power Pages also allows Azure web application firewall capabilities to protect against common web vulnerabilities.

Additional components that provide access to Power Pages and control data access include authenticated users, table permissions and page permissions.

Power Pages configuration and administration are managed in the Setup workspace.

How do Power Pages work with other Power Platform components?

Dataverse – Power Pages is powered by Dataverse to securely store and manage data enabling forms, views, dashboards and other familiar app components to surface Dataverse data.

Power Automate – flows can be connected to processes handled within Power Pages to interact with data and actions. This can include applying business logic or automating messages, for example sending appointment reminders.

Power BI – reports, dashboards, and tiles can be integrated, enabling portal users to access and interact with these visualisations.

Power Apps – data collected in any Power Apps, including Dynamics 365, can be surfaced within Power Pages.

Power Virtual Agents – Microsoft plans to add capabilities that will enable AI-driven chatbots for Power Pages.

Power Platform diagram showing Dataverse at the centre with Power Pages, Power BI, Power Automate and Virtual Agents Power Pa

Introducing Power Pages

What Next?

Power Apps portals are breaking out as a standalone product in the Power Platform. Power Pages builds on Power Apps portals capabilities to add a new design studio, new templates and learning resources. It offers an easy solution for anyone to create and style a data-powered site with minimum design and coding skills.

To try out Power Pages now, sign up for the free Public Preview and complete the form below to contact Preact if you have any questions.

We will update this post as more updates are released during the public preview.

By submitting this form, you agree to Preact's privacy policy and the processing of this data.

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