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NAV and Business Central differences

Dynamics NAV as brand name is phased out and the solution has instead become the on-premise part of Business Central. The latest version of Dynamics NAV is therefore Business Central On premise. As always, when Microsoft has launched a new version of NAV, Business Central On premise comes with a lot of improvements and new features.

Business Central On-premise, the latest version of Dynamics NAV

As part of the so-called 'October update' which was released on October 1, 2018, Dynamics NAV became the on-premise version of Dynamics 365 Business Central. This means that 'Dynamics NAV' as a brand name officially  has been phased out  and that the latest version of Dynamics NAV wasn't called NAV 2019, but instead Business Central On premise.

Anyone who has followed the ERP solution, originally called Navision, since Microsoft acquired it in 2012, knows that Microsoft has put enormous resources into development and improvement. Microsoft's ambitious and ongoing efforts to improve Dynamics NAV have not been in vain, today NAV has the largest customer base with more than 110,000 companies using the solution.

Despite the change of name, Dynamics NAV still contains the functionality that has made the solution so popular among its users, however with the latest version there are, as we are used to when Microsoft releases a new version of Dynamics NAV / Navision, both changes and improvements in the new version.

New approach to the ERP solution

Microsoft's vision for their Dynamics 365 solutions, including Business Central On premise, is to break from the traditional approach of ERP and instead build their solutions on a foundation of a data platform and cloud based AI (Artificial Intelligence). Business Central is not quite there yet, but the solution has built-in functionality that extends towards technology such as AI and Azure Cognitive Services and there is no doubt that future development of Business Central will be characterized by that type of technology and services.

Improved user experience

For many years, Microsoft has focused on mobility and user experience across browsers and mobile and tablet apps. Already at the launch of NAV 2015 in 2014, the catchfrase was "More mobile, more cloud" and since then the solution has been continuously improved and adapted to customers who value mobility and flexibility. Even minor improvements that may seem small and insignificant, such as the new menu navigation behavior, are designed to enhance the mobile user experience.

Optimized productivity

As something new, Power BI is now automatically inserted when implementing Business Central. This means that you get numerous Power BI reports, both on the front page and on detailed views such as lists. In addition, the solution contains a large number of productivity improvements, such as keyboard and accounting shortcuts and copy / paste functionality of business data.

Other improvements in Business Central On premise

  • Productivity improvements for users of the desktop client
  • Accessibility functionality for desktop users, for example for users with reduced vision and mobility
  • Updated user experience for users on larger screens. The update includes improved data layout, optimized use of screen space, better visibility and readability of data, and easier navigation throughout the application.
  • If you do not agree with the standard definitions of what should be possible for users to do in Business Central, it is possible to edit the predefined definitions so that you can add, delete and modify them.
  • With the October 2018 release of Business Central, Microsoft allows you, through the Intelligent Edge, to connect your on-premise solution to the intelligent cloud through Business Central (Cloud), and thereby get access to services such as Power BI, Microsoft Flow, machine learning, etc.



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