Someone told me that it’s a good idea to always have a ‘top X’ things you’d fix, add, or change in a product. I first posted my PowerApps and SharePoint wish list about a year ago.
Top X Things Needed to Make PowerApps Awesome for SharePoint
Since last time
- Embedded forms have been introduced.
- SharePoint Online now supports customizing SharePoint list forms by using PowerApps. It’s a pretty awesome improvement. Still a ‘step one’, but a pretty huge step.
- The other two things I mentioned are still on the list and reframed a bit below.
The New List
- Full fidelity for complex field types – The more I use PowerApps, the more I want to be able to use the SharePoint column types that we’re using in many of our lists. Namely Option columns and Lookup columns. At the moment there are stumbling blocks in PowerApps when using these fields and things like GroupBy. PowerApps just doesn’t recognize the data in the way we need it to… yet.
True, there are work-arounds for some use-cases, but the fewer of these we need to deal with going forward, the better. Because this actually hampers some development I’ve moved it to the top of my list.
- PowerApps Web Part – In order for users to have a good experience when in SharePoint and using PowerApps, it’s got to be smooth. Right now it’s still very ‘jerky’ when in SharePoint and opening an app… “hold on while we load up this other thing…”.
As I stated in the original post, this is critical for SharePoint ‘view’ replacements.
Yes, we have iframes as a work around. That’s ‘OK’ but just now how smoothly integrated it should be in my opinion.
- When creating an app from the SharePoint interface give us layout options rather than defaulting to the phone layout. Definitely realize this was a ‘first step’ and are grateful for it, but time to take the next step. This will also be a big deal once a PowerApps web part (see #1) is ready.
Workaround: Yes, you can do this when starting from scratch in PowerApps, but you lose out on the gains of using the wizard.
- From SharePoint: Create an app from a SharePoint view.
- From PowerApps: Create an app from a SharePoint view. Seems like these would be the same thing, but because it’s actually the integration of two products there’s work that needs to be done on both sides for this to work. When choosing a data source it currently gets you down to the list level – ‘just’ need to extend one more level down to selecting a view. (I say ‘just’ but fully realize there’s a LOT of work behind the scenes to make this happen – keep it up engineers!!).
More things in no particular order:
- Keep improving PowerApps forms for SharePoint. Wizards, better UX, or whatever it takes to make this both easier for power users (non-dev). Great start – really, I don’t want to sound ungrateful – it’s awesome. Just keep improving on it.
- Improve forms UX for (non-dev) power users.
- Make forms available for anonymous and external users. This works for SharePoint, but not the PowerApps forms quite yet (I assume this is at least in part because PowerApps itself is not available to non-tenant users).
- I don’t have a good name for this one, but essentially a ‘code view’ and search.
Ex. When creating an app from SharePoint it creates a nice 3 screen app with a search baked in. If you delete the Search box, a number of other controls break because they have references to the Search control. It would be nice to have visibility within the PowerApps Studio to where formulas reference a control so makers can update references.
- PowerApps forms available in the SharePoint mobile app
- Responsive (Canvas) PowerApps. Sounds like the model-driven apps will be responsive. When will we get the same responsive options in SharePoint forms and canvas apps?
The list will continue to evolve…