Create your first app in Power Apps

In this unit, you'll generate a mobile app where the data source is a Microsoft Excel workbook that's stored in Microsoft OneDrive for Business. This Excel workbook lists a company's inventory of flooring samples with pictures and prices.

Keep in mind that you can use data from many other sources, including Microsoft SharePoint, cloud services like Salesforce, and on-premises sources like Microsoft SQL Server.

Note

Power Apps requires either an Office 365 license or a free trial. Learn more about your licensing options. Microsoft products include Microsoft Power Apps and Power Automate.

Connect to a data source

To connect to a data source, use the following procedure:

  1. Download the Flooring Estimates workbook and save it to OneDrive for Business.

  2. Go to https://web.powerapps.com and sign in with your organizational account.

  3. In the left pane, select Apps.

  4. Select Create an app and then Canvas from the drop-down menu.

  5. For the OneDrive for Business data source, select Phone layout.

    Phone app from Excel

    Generated apps are always based on a single list or table, but you can add more data to the app later. The next three steps explain how to connect to the Excel workbook.

  6. Under Connections, select OneDrive for Business and browse to the file location. You might need to select New Connection to see the OneDrive for Business connection.

  7. Under Choose a table, select the FlooringEstimates table.

  8. Select Connect on the bottom right.

Power Apps generates the app by inspecting your data and matching it with Power Apps capabilities so that you get a working app as a starting point.

Explore the generated app

Your new three-screen app now opens in Power Apps Studio.

The following figure shows the main development window for Power Apps Studio, which you'll learn more about in later units.

The generated app

Select Play Start app preview arrow in the upper-right corner to practice using the app. Notice that it includes all the data from the table and provides a good default experience.

All apps that are generated from data have the same set of screens that you can view from the Screens pane:

  • Browse screen - This screen appears by default. In it, you can browse, sort, filter, and refresh the data from the data source. In the browse screen, you can add items to the data source by selecting the plus sign (+).
  • Details screen - The details screen shows all information about a single item. In this screen, you can open an item to edit or delete it.
  • Edit/create screen - In this screen, you can edit an existing item or create a new one.

To make your app visible on the phone, it needs to be saved. Select File, Save as. Replace the current title "App" with flooring-estimates app, and then select Save. You will see a green check mark when all changes are successfully saved. You can now open the app on your phone.

Install the app on your device

To see how the app runs on mobile, install the Power Apps Mobile app on your phone. When building an app, you should test it in the same form factor as your users.

  1. Download Power Apps Mobile from the app store for the platform that you want to use.

  2. Sign in by using your username and password.

  3. On your phone or tablet, run the flooring-estimates app in Power Apps Mobile. If you do not want to install the app, you can run it in a browser.