Release 2022 Wave 1 Summary

As I described in one of my previous posts (Explaining “One Version” – Dynamics MDA) Microsoft is releasing two “Waves” of new functionalities and improvements per year. Today, 25.01.2022, Microsoft has published the Release Notes for the Release 2022 Wave 1. Like the last time, it is overall a quite huge “document”. This blog post is a “curated” summary of the Release 2022 Wave 1 release notes. You can find them under the following links:

In this blog post, I try to summarize the Release Notes and highlight the features I find most interesting or impactful.

As always I will focus on the areas I usually work with. There are a lot more features that I don’t cover in this article. I highly recommend you to read the Release notes yourself, to get a better overview of what is important for your solution.

In general, I think this time the release notes were not as exciting as the previous ones. Still, there are some good features that are being introduced or will reach GA.

Legend

To every mentioned feature I will provide 3 “dates” if possible:

  • Public preview (PP)
  • Early access (EA)
  • General availability (GA)

Another information I share per described feature is the “Feature type” (FT)(read more). This could either be:

  • “Users, automatically” 
  • “Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically”  
  • “Users by admins, makers, or analysts”

Power Platform

In this paragraph of the Release 2022 Wave 1 summary, I will start with the Power Platform part of the Release Notes. Microsoft is investing a lot in this area. The list of changes/improvements is long. I will only mention a few of those in every sub-area.

Power Apps

Model-driven app in-app notifications reach general availability

The Model-driven app in-app notifications will be generally available. We were able to use them in preview already quite some time, but now we are able to officially use them in production. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Easy record sharing

This feature makes it easier to share Accounts, Cases, Opportunities or Contacts with colleagues. It introduces the known share functionality from Office to Dynamics. Read more.

PP: 4 Nov. 2021
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

New activity dropdown to show only relevant activities

The “new Activity” drop-down will now only include those activity types which are included in the app. This makes it easier for makers to exclude/hide certain activity types. Which makes it easier to work in the system for the end-user since they only see the types they need. Read more.

PP: Jan. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Explore data through modern advanced find

This new advanced find will basically replace the old one which is around for some time and wasn’t migrated to the new UI. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Co-presence in records

It will be possible to see which of your colleagues are currently working on a certain record and easily start a chat with them. This reminds much of the functionality we have in word or Excel online where you also can see which of your colleagues are in the same file at the moment. Read more.

PP: 4 Nov. 2021
EA: –
GA: Sep. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Makers can collaborate together on the same app by merging changes

It will be possible that several people edit the same canvas app at the same time. This should increase productivity and accelerate development. Read more.

PP: Jun. 2022
EA: –
GA: –

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Quickly create tables and load data in Dataverse based on existing data

This feature brings the table designer we have in Teams apps to the maker portal. It will be possible to load data from a file and create/alter a table based on the information in the file. For example by adding a column to the table which is present in the file but not in the dataverse table yet. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Command designer with Power Fx

The new command designer which uses Power Fx will become GA. We can already use it in preview already. Read more.

PP: 29. Jul. 2021
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Build forms entirely using features available in the modern form designer

The new form designer in the maker portal will get parity with the classic form designer. This includes stuff like PCF configuration. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Power Fx formulas provide richer and easier to use column calculations in Microsoft Dataverse

The possibility to use Power Fx to create the formula for calculated fields will become generally available. This is already testable in preview at the moment. Read more.

PP: Oct. 2021
EA: –
GA: May. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Conditional access policies for individual Power Apps

This feature makes it possible to configure the conditional access on a per app granularity. Read more.

PP: 29. Aug. 2021
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Power Automate

Flow ownership supported for Service Principals

With this feature a Service Principal can be the owner of flows and connections can be shared with them. This will be a huge improvement for ALM. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Greater control over connection reference creation and reuse during flow creation

Authors of cloud flows will get better control over the creation and selection of connection references. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Resubmit multiple failed runs at once

It will be possible to resubmit several failed cloud flow runs at the same time. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Solution references will be visible when viewing solution resources

At the moment it isn’t very easy to find all the places where a flow or connection reference is used. This feature will make it easier to discover just that. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Undo feature in Cloud Flow designer

This feature will introduce undo/redo capability to the cloud flow editor. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Misc

In the following chapter, you will find features from different parts of the release plan, which couldn’t fit in somewhere else within this blog post. Those are features from for example ISV experience, pro dev or Governance.

Results from Dataverse will be shown in the Microsoft 365 search. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: May. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Application Dependencies Management

This feature makes it possible to define dependencies for an application. For example, another application that needs to be installed prior. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users, automatically

Azure Key Vault secrets can be used in custom connectors using environment variables

With this feature, one can use Environment Variables of type Secret in custom connectors. This makes the ALM story of custom connectors and Service Principal secrets specifically a lot easier. Read more.

PP: Apr. 2022
EA: –
GA: –

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Service principal support for connectors

It will be possible to use a service principal to access different data sources. This was already possible for the Dataverse connector, but not for a lot of the other connectors. Read more.

PP: Jun. 2022
EA: –
GA: –

FT: Users, automatically

Dynamics 365

The second part of this Release 2022 Wave 1 summary is around Dynamics 365.

Dynamics 365 Sales

Update quotas quickly with inline editing and quota rollups

It will be possible to easily edit quotas inline which then also updates the forecasts. In addition to that quotas of managers are only rollups of all of their subordinates. Now it is possible to configure these as roll-ups as well. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Migrate forecasts from one environment to another with solution awareness

Forecasts will become solution aware which makes deployment of them a lot easier since they can follow alongside all the other customization you have in your environment. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Aug. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Discover accounts and contacts from email interactions

This will improve the integration between Dynamics 365 and Exchange. It will be possible to search within both systems for conversations to reveal and uncover hidden relationships more easily. Read more.

PP: Apr. 2022
EA: –
GA: –

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Get notified when customers actively engage with you

With this feature, sellers will get notifications when a customer interacts with an email. Since the customer is already interacting they are more likely to proceed interacting if the seller reacts to it quickly. Notifications do allow just that. This is part of the Sales Accelerator. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Dynamics 365 Marketing

Nearly all the new features within Dynamics 365 Marketing are to improve the experience for your customer. They optimize the Layout of your emails, the content as well as how the marketing activity reaches the customer.

Take action with your customers in more ways by raising triggers from a journey to run another journey or Power Automate flow

It will be possible to trigger flows and other sub journeys from a customer journey. This makes it possible to start complex processes based on the steps within a customer journey. This could for example be some approval process when a certain threshold for a loan is surpassed. This feature is only applicable to real-time marketing. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Trigger journeys based on data changes in any Dynamics 365 app to engage customers at the right time without writing any code

With this feature, it will be possible to trigger customer journeys on nearly any data within Dataverse, no matter which first-party app or custom table they are from. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Personalize interactions using a unified view of customer activity across Dynamics 365 Marketing, Sales, and Customer Service

Even the activities from Dynamics 365 Marketing will now be shown within the unified activity timeline on a contact. Read more.

PP: Apr. 2022
EA: –
GA: Jun. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Delight your customers with hyper-personalized next-best content selection and boost your marketing ROI by optimizing with AI

The use of AI is always an exciting part. In this feature, AI is used to select content based on a customer’s individual behaviour and preferences. Read more.

PP: Jun. 2022
EA: –
GA: –

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Increase engagement using AI-powered optimization to reach each customer on the best channel based on their customer attributes

Another interesting AI feature. This time the AI will choose the correct communication channel to reach a customer for the current purpose. The example Microsft uses is that a customer might be okay to be contacted via SMS in the case he recently purchased a product, whereas email would be the preferred method in any other case. This is determined by the historical behaviour of the customer. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Target the right contacts and leads using the reimagined, easy-to-use segmentation builder

This feature introduces a new reimagined segmentation builder, which will improve productivity and makes it much easier to build the right segments. Read more.

PP: Jun. 2022
EA: –
GA: TBA

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Dynamics 365 Customer Service

The last first-party app I will take a look at within this blog post is Customer Service. As with the other parts as well, this app will get a lot of new features or optimizations. I only picked the ones I thought are of most interest (to me).

Simplify administration with new Customer Service admin center application

Microsoft created a new admin app for all the settings needed for customer service. There will also be guided and task-based experience to it which should make configuration and set up much easier. Read more.

PP: Feb. 2022
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Relevance search integration for knowledge management in portals

With this feature, new filters and content access levels for Knowledge articles on portals will be introduced. This should make it easier for customers to find the right article directly on the portal. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Users by admins, makers, or analysts

Enhancement in default queues for unified routing

Makes it possible to configure default queues for every workstream. This will allow admins and makers to tailor the system to their own needs. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Enhancements in diagnostics for unified routing

This feature will allow administrators and supervisors to analyze why errors and exceptions occurred during the routing process. Which leads to optimization of the process and fewer errors in the future. Read more.

PP: –
EA: –
GA: Apr. 2022

FT: Admins, makers, marketers, or analysts, automatically

Summary

Once more Microsoft will release a lot of new functions and improvements of already existing functionality. Most of them are quite good (at least they sound good) and will bring the Platform, we like to work with, further.

There are a lot more improvements that were not covered in this summary of the Release 2022 Wave 1. I am sure that the list will even grow over the next weeks.

Important to notice: The Early-Access period will start soon (already next Monday, 31 of January 2022). Make sure to opt-in to it (read how to do it) and test all the new functionality in your own environment.

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