Power Automate Desktop is now free for Windows 10 OS users: Microsoft throws open access to tool for creating automated desktop-centric workflows

Microsoft Power Automate Desktop
A $15/month subscription-only platform is now free for Windows 10 OS users. Pic credit: Microsoft via VentureBeat

Microsoft has thrown open access to Power Automate Desktop, its enterprise-level tool for creating an automated desktop-centric workflow. The subscription-only platform currently costs $15 per month.

Power Automate Desktop, a powerful tool that lets users create scripts to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks, is now free. Microsoft has allowed all Windows 10 OS users free access to the platform, which means anyone can download and start using the same.

What is Microsoft Power Automate Desktop?

Power Automate Desktop is an enterprise-level tool for creating automated desktop-centric workflows. Microsoft calls it an “attended Robotic Process Automation” solution.

Basically, the platform is an enhanced version of the macro recorder. In other words, users can build their own scripts to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks.

Needless to add, there are several tasks that users execute on a daily basis, and would like to automate and sync them. Microsoft has included 370 prebuilt actions that allow users to easily build automated workflows across several different applications.

Microsoft launched Power Automate Desktop in September 2020. It had acquired Softomotive in early 2020 and has based the product on this company’s products. Basically, Microsoft has extended Softomotive’s technology and integrated it deeper into its own products.

Charles Lamanna, the CVP of Power Platform engineering at Microsoft said: We’ve had this mission of wanting to go democratize development for everybody with the Power Platform. And that means, of course, making products which are accessible to anybody — and that’s what no-code/low-code is all about, whether it’s building applications with Power Apps or automating with Power Automate. But another big part of that is just, how do you also expand the imagination of a typical PC user to make them believe they can be a developer?”

What does the subscription-only platform offer Windows 10 users?

Interested users who wish to use Power Automate Desktop can now download it from Microsoft. The company is also planning to make the platform a part of Insider Builds for Windows 10.

Eventually, the platform will become a built-in part of Windows 10. Microsoft reportedly wants to offer Power Automate Desktop to standard Windows Home version users as well. Currently, however, a per-user license for the platform costs at least $15 per month.

Power Automate Desktop
Pic credit: Microsoft

Power Automate Desktop is a user-friendly, low-code application. Some of its main features are:

  • Use the desktop and web recorders to build flows while editing the recorded actions in real-time across the web or desktop.
  • Organize your flows logically with the visual designer, while using desktop and web recorders to capture the core logic of your automation.
  • Create flows faster using a diverse set of prebuilt actions that connect to many different systems including SAP, websites, and even legacy terminals and mainframes.
  • Take advantage of exception handling to enable complex workflows that require validation through actions and scripts. Proactively manage settings so automation don’t require human intervention.
  • Review automatically saved centralized logs that include detailed information for every execution run, plus screenshots of errors for any troubleshooting.
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