Tip #802: PowerApps vs Dynamics 365

I have a scenario for a line of business application. Should I use Dynamics 365, or should I build a Power App?

This is a question that a growing number of companies are asking. The marketing message around PowerApps is very similar to the xrm message–build powerful line of business applications without having to worry about the “plumbing” (security, authentication, data model) and with minimal custom development. 

 When approaching this question, I would first look at what business problem you are trying to solve. If you are doing anything like sales opportunity management, customer service, field service, Dynamics is a better place to start because it has rich and mature functionality in these areas that would be very difficult to duplicate with a PowerApp, along with the infrastructure to handle complex security requirements.

But if you are looking to just build a simple focused business mobile app, PowerApps are a good option. And Dynamics and PowerApps are not mutually exclusive, since Dynamics can be a data source for a PowerApp. PowerApps are also a great home when there are needs for mashup experiences where CRM and other systems come in one app.

If you want full Dynamics functionality on a mobile device, the best choice is probably going to be Dynamics 365 mobile apps. If you want a more limited focus mobile app that includes Dynamics data but also includes data and functionality from other sources, PowerApps may be a better choice. And the right answer may well be “both.”

To access Dynamics data from PowerApps, users have to be licensed for Dynamics, so users will have access to both applications.

Thanks to Nikita Polyakov for contributing to this tip!

Do you think that Field Service is the top Dynamics news of 2016? Vote now for the top Dynamics new story of the year, then tune in to CRM Audio to hear the results next week for our year in review episode.


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