Almost there
Eltjo Verweij | TrustRadius Reviewer
Updated November 04, 2014

Almost there

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version


Modules Used

  • Power BI app for Windows 8
  • Sharepoint 2013 Online
  • Excel 2013

Overall Satisfaction with Power BI For Office 365

In our organization, Power BI is used for ad-hoc data analysis and some regular reports, next to other BI tools. Only data analysts use it to compile reports that are easily viewed in Excel by non-Power BI users. It is the tool of choice for combining data from multiple sources.
  • Ease of use. Most people have experience working with Excel. If you know how to create pivots, you can use Power BI.
  • Data extraction and transformation (ETL). ETL is a joy with Power Query. It is intuitive, simple and a magical experience to transform poor data into something useful.
  • Visuals. Power BI is beautiful to behold, especially Power View.
  • Maps. The interactive maps are great built-in tools.
  • Cost You cannot find anything cheaper than Power BI, unless you want to give it to every user in your company.
  • Automatic updates. A choice of a daily or weekly refresh is too slow for this era of real-time updates.
  • Speed. It takes a while to load all the data into memory. Data with more than one million records will take a few minutes to refresh. Once it is loaded, it starts being fairly fast.
  • Changing queries in Power Query. Although Microsoft is working on it, when you delete a step in Power Query, you might have to rebuild your data model. This defeats the purpose of having a fantastic user interface, in which it is simple to change queries.
Tableau and Qlikview are both faster and have easier many-to-many relationships. However, for the average user, Power BI is much easier as a true Self-service BI. Besides, the cost for Power BI is lower.
It is a cheap way of exploring data and comes with the whole Office 2013 experience, including Sharepoint. For a new company, it is hard to find a better deal.
At the maximum, we have had 10 users, of which 3 were data analysts. The others were consumers of the data.
There is an ever-increasing range of data-sources, including SAP. Real-time is possible, but rather slow. Overall, it is hard to beat the number of different data sources it can connect to.
PowerView is absolutely gorgeous, and easy to use once you are used to it. You can literally create a dashboard in minutes. The number of chart types is rather overwhelming at first, although there are but a few you would use in real life. Interactive maps are my favorite.
As long as each user has a Power BI licence, it is a 10 out of 10. However, it is harder to share with people who don't have a licence.
Power BI is great for a daily or weekly report, or any ad-hoc queries. Ideally, all users should have Windows 8 and Excel 2013. If you have more than 500,000 records or need real-time updates, you might want to look for another BI tool.