Microsoft announces the discontinuation of InfoPath
We all know Microsoft InfoPath in the era of form saves tons of time. With it, those who don’t have technical skills can easily design business form by simply dragging and dropping built-in controls then publish it to SharePoint for collaboration. Lots of organizations require the use of InfoPath for their SharePoint deployment. InfoPath, however, currently has many limitations you probably know when working with it (managed metadata, BCS…etc.). For only small deployment with simple form, InfoPath would be the best choice.
If you are to work on enterprise solutions (i.e. financial form), InfoPath may give you a real nightmare. As a result, there are many serious debates in deciding InfoPath or Web form for SharePoint business form. Each of the two types has pros and cons. With InfoPath, end-users can themselves make changes on fields they need without having to know programming language very quickly. Most of the things are out of the box. However, when complex business logic exists, InfoPath make them blocked. With web form, every challenge in form development can be sorted out. However, web form takes very much time to be built. You would have to add controls via Visual Studio and write custom action code associated with each control.
To address the concern above, Microsoft has recently announced the discontinuation of InfoPath and its effort to building a new form technology. Microsoft will still support InfoPath thought. The support plan is summarized as follows:
- The InfoPath 2013 client will be supported through April 2023
- InfoPath Forms Services for SharePoint Server 2013 will be supported until April 2023
- InfoPath Forms Services in Office 365 will be supported until further notice.
As of the announcement, the concern of approach to building form in SharePoint is mostly come up. Microsoft would answer any questions regarding SharePoint Form and InfoPath roadmap at the SPC14.
Read more the announcement here: http://blogs.office.com/2014/01/31/update-on-infopath-and-sharepoint-forms/
Update 04/02/2014: Some folks have said Microsoft Access will replace InfoPath with the new modern of form technology. Data would be stored in SQL Azure as well.