Microsoft are introducing a new flexible way of paying for Power Apps and their related Power Platform services which entails payment based on actual usage.
Currently in preview, customers can now use an Azure subscription to cover their Power Apps and Dataverse costs based on actual usage. Previously, customers have been expected to forecast their licensing needs and make a payment based on what they believe their business required. To achieve this, this often meant time-consuming processes took place between developers, makers, and IT professionals.
Now there is an alternative with the pay-as-you-go plan, where customers only pay for what they use, which allows for increased flexibility when investing in low-code apps.
What benefits does the pay-as-you-go plan bring?
- Only pay when users use your apps – this plan is particularly useful if you have created an app for a large organisation that will only be used by a select set of users on an occasional basis. As a result, a pay-as-you-go plan would be more financially beneficial.
- Gauge usage patterns – It can be challenging to predict how many users will want to use a new app you are building and over forecasting your licensing needs could leave you in a budget deficit. The pay-as-you-go plan lets you determine usage patterns which can help forecast how many pre-paid Power Apps licences you will need.
- Share costs within your organisation – Many organisations want to allocate software licence costs to specific departments or teams that use the licences. A Power Apps pay-as-you-go plan allows teams/departments to pay for their licences using Azure subscriptions which are linked to their own departmental budgets. Furthermore, it provides the option to use Azure Cost Management and Azure tags to visualise and divide up the costs efficiently.
How does it work?
To set up your Power Apps pay-as-you-go plan, you can simply link the environment containing your app to an Azure subscription. Then the usage of your apps in that environment will be measured using a new set of Azure meters which will be billed to your subscription. The meters are as follows:
- Power Apps per-app pay-as-you-go meter
- Dataverse pay-as-you-go meter
- Power Platform requests meter
For more information about how each meter works, you can read Microsoft’s documentation.
How can I manage and monitor my costs?
Transitioning from a pre-paid licensing to a pay-as-you-go plan will mean increased monitoring of costs to prevent any unexpected changes. Microsoft has provided a range of tools to achieve this.
Azure Cost Management
Azure’s Cost Management tool visualises a breakdown of charges associated with your meters. This is a useful and informative tool that also allows you to set budgets for each meter which can trigger alerts if you are close to going over your initial limit. Azure tags is another tool that can be used to organise your resources by solution area, department, cost centre and more. This can be done by adding customisable tags to the Power Platform account resources in your subscription.
Although this new feature is in preview at the moment, this is a development from Microsoft which is aiming to increase flexibility and accommodate customers who may have trouble forecasting their Power Apps licences. If you are an existing Strategy 365 client and wish to discuss the pay-as-you-go plan for Power Apps with one of our experts, please feel free to get in touch.