Microsoft Ignite October 2022 Highlights

Microsoft Ignite October 2022 Highlights

John PhillipsProduct Updates

As Microsoft’s annual event ends for another year, we take a look at the more significant product announcements.

What is Microsoft Ignite?

Ignite is Microsoft’s regular gathering of technology leaders and practitioners and is for anyone interested in the latest developments in Microsoft’s business applications. In-person and virtual sessions enable people in all roles, from developers and IT implementers to those who make purchasing decisions for enterprise tech and security solutions, to get updated on the latest developments in Microsoft technologies.

What areas did this event cover?

This year’s event focused on these key areas:

This blog post looks at announcements focused on Dynamics 365 and Power Platform.

1 – Improved Teams and Dynamics 365 Customer Service integration

With embedded Microsoft Teams chat, users can collaborate with stakeholders without leaving Dynamics 365. This allows users to use Dynamics 365 data as the focal point for collaboration and link chats to Dynamics 365 records, including opportunities and cases. The feature, now in preview as part of Dynamics 365 Customer Service, is expected to be generally available in October 2022.

Also, by using the embedded Teams experience, users will be able to take advantage of AI-generated conversation summaries in Dynamics 365 Customer Service. This summary includes the customer issue and the result of resolutions attempted by the agent. In addition, agents can review a customer’s previous chat history to get further visibility and context. This is especially helpful in scenarios where a customer service agent has a case transferred to them.

2 – Power Automate AI-powered enhancements

Users can now start to build Power Automate flows using natural language, by simply describing the process they want to automate. AI will then build the flow in seconds, without searching or guesswork. Once a user selects a suggested flow, they can then continue to set up the appropriate connections and then finalise the process within the flow designer. This feature is now in preview.

Another new Power Automate feature is expressions by example. This is a new method for generating expressions when creating cloud flows, specifically when it comes to data reshaping. Users simply provide examples of how they want their data to be visually represented and AI-generated expressions will be suggested, removing the need to build these expressions manually. This update is also in preview.

Power Automate now also appears natively in Excel Online, letting users create custom flows using pre-built templates, tailored to what you can accomplish with Excel. Simply click the “Automate a Task” button in the new Automate tab to see ready-made templates to automate common integrations with other popular apps such as Microsoft Forms and SharePoint.

3 – Power Platform Managed Environments

Managed Environments is a collection of features that enable IT administrators to oversee Microsoft Power Platform environments at scale, with enhanced control, better visibility and with less effort. Features include:

  • Weekly Digest provides proactive notifications, giving insights into the most-used and least-used apps, allowing admins to clean up unused resources or promote apps that are being extensively used.
  • Limit Sharing controls can be used to prevent app sprawl and reduce oversharing, by limiting who can use apps, removing sharing among security groups and limiting the number of users.
  • Environment-scoped Data Loss Protection (DLP) policies provide visibility for administrators into newly-created, environment-specific DLP polices.
  • Simple environment activation allows Power Platform admins to easily activate Managed Environments for Power Platform in just a few clicks

4 – Improved Power BI Office integration

Two new enhancements make it easier for Microsoft Office users to get started with Power BI:

  • Power BI will be automatically installed for Office users, reducing the need for manual deployment by an IT department. For customers that have Office or Microsoft 365 E5 where Power BI is included, Power BI can now be scaled in less time.
  • Users will be able to view and edit Power BI reports from within OneDrive and SharePoint, without needing to download the Power BI Desktop app, making it easier for users to preview and collaborate on reports.

5 – Connect to external data sources in Microsoft Dataverse

Microsoft Dataverse has long supported the use of virtual tables. Although they are powerful, they can be tricky to set up. With this new release, users will be able to create tables in Dataverse that surface external data by using simple connections to find that external data. For example, a Dataverse table with data from an Excel workbook in OneDrive or a SQL Server in Azure.

Depending on the connection, a table will then be automatically generated with the correct schema and integration. This update will be coming to preview in early 2023.

6 – Power Pages reaches General Availability and introduces a new licensing model

Having been in Preview for some time, Power Pages has now reached General Availability and has a number of new features:

  • Enhanced Design Studio – design multi-step forms in a seamless and effortless way, without code, all without leaving the Design Studio. Page editors will also be able to add custom cascading style sheets (CSS), preview site pages on different screen sizes and control when changes go live when publishing a site.
  • Templates Hub – 16 new template options. Rather than starting from scratch, easily customise the a template’s look and feel, then model data and extend functionality to solve common industry-specific use cases, including building permits and meeting scheduling.
  • Learn Hub – a new section, specifically for Power Pages, now includes tutorials to guide users through the site-building experience.
  • Pro-developer tools update – empowers makers to use Visual Studio (VS) Code Web to edit source code for page content (HTML and Liquid), CSS and Javascript.
  • Updated security and governance – includes turn-key integration with Azure Web Application Firewall, content delivery network (CDN) support with Azure Front Door, support for custom domains and added support for new Microsoft Dataverse data types.

As part of the updated release, a simplified licensing model has been introduced to move away from daily sign-ins and page views to monthly authenticated and anonymous users. Power Pages will be available through pre-paid, capacity-based subscriptions and pay-as-you-go meters.


Although some of these new features are in preview at the moment and consideration should be taken before applying them in a live environment, it’s exciting to see the range of new improvements that are continually being made to Dynamics 365, the Power Platform and the Microsoft ecosphere as a whole. If you are an existing Strategy 365 client and wish to discuss any of these new developments with one of our experts, feel free to get in touch.

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