Questions about new Access database connectors

Microsoft has announced that the Access database program will get added database connectors in early 2017.

The announcement was a bit vague on date, detail and which Access users will be getting these additional features.

Date

Early 2017” before 1 April 2017 or sometime in the next 4½ months.

Detail

include OData Feed, Dynamics CRM, Salesforce and Amazon Redshift“.  The key word is ‘include’ so there may be more than the four connectors mentioned.

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Who gets them?

The connectors “will be available for customers with Office 365 ProPlus, E3 and E5 plans“.  By this wording, it seems there’s to be a split in Access features with some data connectors only available to Enterprise plan users.  Consumer and Business Office 365 users won’t have the same connectors.

That’s understandable but means there’ll be a difference in features within Access 2016 depending on which Office 365 plan you’re using.

A modest proposal

While these new connectors are welcome, we’d like to see a more wide-ranging change in the way Microsoft Office deals with incoming data feeds.

Excel’s Power Query / Get & Transform should be deployed as a common feature across the main Office apps – Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access.

A common data import / update module that works the same in all Office programs, instead of the current inconsistent and frustrating differences.