I have had the chance to look deep into the 2022 release wave 1 plans. There are tons of goodies, and we again see the direction where things are going. There is a lot of investments in the microservices area, and we see the platform opening up like a blooming flower.
There is one specific coming feature that caught my attention; Unified pricing service. I encourage you all to read the business value and feature details.
In essence Microsoft is planning to release a feature allowing for “attribute-based pricing”. I have seen this before in ISV solutions, and it brings a new high value aspect to the more advanced pricing requirements we see in B2B and distribution space. The pricing engine also have a RESTfull API that can expose the pricing to external system.
So, what is attribute based pricing?
Attributes can be any additional property you place on a customer, product, or transactions. Multiple prices/discounts will be triggered based on the properties of the product, and followed up with concurrency modes using best price, compound rules, or price-attribute group priorities. An attribute may anything like customer is part of a chain, area, or are included in specific campaigns defined as an attribute. The same applies to products and transactions that may be marked with attributes that trigger price/discounts. We have seen parts of this in Dynamics 365 commerce with the use of category hierarchies or affiliations that may trigger price/discounts. But pay attention to where this new feature is place; It is place in the “Inventory and Logistics” area, and not in the commerce area. This is a huge plus, as we very often see these requirements at distributors. I do hope and expect that commerce also will benefit for this.
But there is an important aspect when we move into this direction; Prices/discounts are not static records but needs to be calculated in real time. And microservices is the right solution for this.
The only thing I’m disappointed on, is that this feature don’t have a GA date yet, and the public preview is September 2022. And I wanted this yesterday .
But from a customer/consumer perspective this will just make pricing more complicated.