Microsoft Build 2024: A Look at the Important Announcements

Copilot Studio

This year’s Microsoft Build was a whirlwind of innovation, with a focus on harnessing the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to transform the way we work and develop applications. From next-gen search functionalities to code-assistants on mobile, Microsoft unveiled a suite of groundbreaking announcements poised to shape the future of technology. Let’s dive deeper and explore the key takeaways from Microsoft Build 2024! We’ll cover the key updates to Microsoft Copilot Studio and Power Platform in this blog. For the rest of the updates, you can read the Microsoft Build Book of News.

Microsoft Copilot Studio

There were lots of references to Microsoft Copilot Studio starting right from the Keynote session by Satya Nadella.

The key enhancement to Copilot Studio is the new UX. The home screen now looks the same as Power Apps and Power Automate. There’s also a UX enhancement in the Copilot configuration screen along with a knowledge section (previously generative AI).
Build 2024 - Copilot Enhancements
Build 2024 - Knowledge Sources

Connectors – Users can connect to other services (over 1000+ connectors). Users can also connect to their business data (Dataverse), productivity data (Microsoft Graph) and analytics (Microsoft Fabric).

Copilot agents – Copilots can now work autonomously based on events, not just user prompts – all of this within Copilot Studio! Imagine a personal helper for your work, tailored to your specific role or function. They can orchestrate long business processes on their own, analyze what’s going on and take appropriate actions, and use past interactions to perform better in the future. This is currently in Early Access Program.

Copilot Studio can now extract data from images, opening doors for automating tasks that rely on visual information. Say, you take a picture of your favourite smartphone and send that to Copilot asking for best deals. The Copilot can recognize the image and perform the tasks. This is a very interesting feature in the making as it can be implemented across different business scenarios.

Power Platform Highlights

The Power Platform received a boost at Microsoft Build 2024 as AI and Automation took the center stage during the conference focusing on enhancing business efficiency. Some of the key updates were –

Power Automate

AI Flows (LLM Flows) – “LLM” stands for Large Language Model, and Power Automate is leveraging this technology with LLM Flows. These flows can understand natural language instructions, allowing users to automate tasks with simpler descriptions rather than complex code. Traditionally, Power Automate relied on pre-defined triggers and actions for automating tasks. LLM flows introduce a new paradigm. This is Logic Apps in a new Avatar! Say, you can create an LLM flow like “Send an email notification to the sales team whenever a new high-value lead is created”. This is a significant step forward in making Power Automate more accessible and user-friendly.
Build 2024 - AI Flows

Multi-modal Desktop Flows – This update expands the capabilities of Power Automate Desktop. Users can now combine UI automation with recording mouse and keyboard actions, making desktop process automation even more versatile.

Automation Monitoring – The Automation Center acts as a central hub for monitoring all your automations and their performance. This means you can easily track the health of your automations, identify any issues that might arise, and ensure they’re running smoothly. The center provides insights into average processing times, success rates of workflows, and adherence to service level agreements (SLAs). This helps businesses to get better visibility, improved troubleshooting, and ultimately, more reliable automations for your organization.
Image Source: Microsoft Documentation

Power Apps

Write and Understand Power Fx code with Copilot – Developers can use Copilot to create and understand Power Fx code. Instead of manually writing the complex Power Fx code, developers can describe the desired functionality in a comment within the formula bar. For example, “// Change color to red when it is past due date.” Copilot can also be used to explain the existing Power Fx. You can simply say “Explain this formula”. Copilot will analyze the code and provides a clear explanation of how it works. Very cool feature that takes the power of AI automation to the next level!
Build 2024 - Explain this formula

Native Integration of Copilot Studio within Power Apps – Say, you’re creating a mobile app to collect customer feedback that feeds into a Power App. Copilot can assist by understanding your voice instructions for functionalities like “Create a screen for users to enter feedback.” With voice-activated Copilot, you can create mobile app functionalities faster through natural language instructions.

Enhanced Collaboration – Working on apps simultaneously is becoming a reality with coauthoring support in canvas apps. Multiple developers can now edit the same app in real-time, facilitating efficient collaboration on projects. Traditionally, you’d have to open an app for editing and potentially lock out others. With coauthoring, multiple developers can work on the same canvas app simultaneously. Just like Google Docs, you can see changes in real-time. Overall, coauthoring in Power Apps makes collaboration on canvas apps a breeze. It streamlines the development process and allows teams to build powerful apps together, efficiently.
Build 2024 - Enhanced Collaboration

Understand backend code – Developers can now view the YAML right within the canvas app. You can copy the YAML from the app and paste in any text editor of your choice, make changes and paste it back into the Power App. This is a very powerful feature for all code-first developers who want to get to the code and make changes.
Build 2024 - Understand Backend Code


Power Apps Studio now integrates with Git, allowing for better version control and collaboration. Developers can track changes, revert to previous versions, and work together more efficiently. In addition, exploring data within Power Apps gets easier with a new Data Pane. This dedicated space allows you to visualize and analyze data directly within the app, simplifying data exploration and decision-making. There are enhancements in governance and administration capabilities, streamlined data connections for easier integration, and improved performance and scalability for handling larger workloads.

Wrapping Up

Microsoft Build 2024 showcased how Copilot Studio and Power Platform empowers businesses to automate workflows, streamline processes, and unlock new levels of efficiency. With natural language data modeling in Power Apps and the ability to build custom copilot agents, the possibilities for streamlining complex workflows are limitless. Whether you’re looking to build intelligent chatbots, automate approvals, or gain deeper insights from your data, the Power Platform and Copilot Studio offer a robust and adaptable solution. As these technologies continue to evolve, businesses can expect even greater automation capabilities and a more intuitive user experience. VNB Consulting, a leader in Power Platform solutions, is here to help your business navigate this exciting landscape. Our team of experts can tailor Power Platform solutions to address your specific needs, unlocking new levels of efficiency and empowering your teams to achieve more.

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