msdynamicsworld: Microsoft clarifies on Dynamics 365 and Power Platform API fees, Portals licensing
Microsoft is preparing to add more consumption-based pricing to Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement and the Power Platform, and as new rules have trickled out, users and partners are working to understand the impact in areas like API usage, data storage, and site traffic.
Several updates are happening nearly at once, from a la carte licensing structure for the Customer Engagement applications, to a new activity-based pricing model for PowerApps Portals (formerly Dynamics 365 Portal), or new limits on API usage for Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement, PowerApps, and Flow. The changes have been revealed piecemeal since July in different ways, some through updated online documentation, others with presentations at closed events, and more in blog posts from Microsoft and well-connected community members.
We reached out to Microsoft to help understand some of the most common questions that members of the community continue to ask about both the changes to Portals and API limits. A spokesperson provided us with the answers that follow.
PowerApps Portals: More monitoring, but commitment to the pre-pay model
Microsoft revealed PowerApps Portals in June 2019, then provided a first round of licensing details at the Inspire conference in July. They then followed that up with more details about pricing tiers in September that were buried in a documentation update The community learned even more when Microsoft MVPs Nick Doelman and Colin Vermander released a podcast conversation with Microsoft program management lead Dileep Singh that explained some of Microsoft's rationale for their approach.
In response to questions from MSDW, Microsoft provided additional information on how organizations will license and pay for portals under the new approach. Their answers reveal that Microsoft will rely on a combination of accurate forecasting by customers using data provided via the Power Platform Admin Center and some degree of flexibility in the purchase process so portals won't be shut down at the first overage and to prevent pre-purchased sessions and pageviews from going unused.
MSDW: What happens if the customer under-purchases logins? For example, if they pre-purchase 2,000 but they get 4,000 logins in a month, what would happen?
Microsoft: Customers will have access to data about actual usage via the Power Platform Admin Center and will receive notifications if that usage exceeds their purchased capacity, which will facilitate the process of adjusting as needed per typical Microsoft terms. End users will not be blocked for reasonable or occasional overages.
Is Microsoft committed to keeping the model as pre-pay for logins?
Currently, we do not have plans to change the model.
Are there any Portals monitoring or cost estimation tools for customers and partners to use?
Yes. Customers will be able to monitor usage via the Power Platform Admin Center. We will roll out a variety of content and tooling to help customers and partners make the best decisions about PowerApps licensing.
Do unused PowerApps Portals logins carry forward to the next month?
Portals are licensed at a monthly rate that is based on a customer's anticipated login volume. Logins are not accumulated as individual assets that would carry forward month to month. Microsoft enterprise agreements are typically annual or multi-year and have a general process for adjustment over the life of the agreement if actual needed volumes end up higher or lower than the originally purchased amounts.
API limits: Understanding per-user rationale, monitoring tools, recommended practices
As with the new Portals pricing, customers and partners are eager to understand how API metering will work and how it will affect live systems. An updated statement from Microsoft in early September explained limitations and pricing for API requests made against Dynamics 365 apps, PowerApps, and Flow coming in October 2019.
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