Prahlad Inala
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What is Power BI?

What is Power BI?

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Prahlad Inala
ยทApr 10, 2022ยท

3 min read

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Table of contents

  • What is Power BI?
  • What are the three core areas of Power BI?
  • What are the core Power BI Toolset?

What is Power BI?

As per Power BI's official website, "A business analytics solution that lets you visualize your data and share insights across your organization. Connect to hundreds of data sources and bring your data to life with live dashboards and reports. "

Power BI is a Bussiness Intelligence tool allowing us to analyze, visualize and share data

Power BI is a very powerful tool and it doesn't require any prior experience to work with Power BI.

What are the three core areas of Power BI?

  1. Data Preparation and Analysis
  2. Data Visualization
  3. Collaboration and Sharing

Data Preparation and Analysis

Anything related to data and tables. Data Preparation means connecting power BI with different source files (like SQL files, Excel, etc there are many source files supported by Power BI) and to work on raw information.

This can be working on columns, deleting columns, deleting rows, or changing the data format.

The final goal of Data Preparation is to have shaped/ prepared data, which can then be used to perform analysis.

Analyzing data in Power BI can be calculating averages or complex calculations.

Data Visualization

In Power BI we can create lots of visuals based on data prepared in the previous stage.

This visualization can be line charts, column charts, bar charts, maps, or more customized using python or R.

Collaboration and Sharing

In Power BI we can work on our own, by creating some visuals for ourselves.

But, mostly Power BI is used to work in teams and can share our reports within the organization or even outside our organization.

What are the core Power BI Toolset?

Power BI is not a single tool, it is a set of combined tools that interact with each other.

  1. Power BI Desktop
  2. Power BI Service
  3. Power BI Mobile

Power BI Desktop

Power BI Desktop is a local application that is only available for the Windows operating systems. Which is freely available to download.

In Power BI Desktop we can work with Dataset i.e. Data Preparation stage. Here we connect with the source files and work with that source data and apply data analytics.

We can also create visuals in Power BI Desktop like line charts, bar charts, maps, etc.,

In Power BI Desktop we can create Reports, which are used to organize our visuals on different pages. For example, we can have some basic data on page 1 and revenue data on page 2, and more

Power BI Service

Power BI Service is a cloud application, this means we don't need to download any software to work with Power BI. We need a power BI account to log in to Power BI Service.

So, this is not limited to Windows only. We just need a browser to access Power BI.

Power BI Service is not a tool to work with datasets, that's part of the Power BI desktop. So we can use this for data preparation and analysis.

But Power BI Service can be used to create Visuals and Reports.

Power BI Service stands out when it comes to creating Dashboards.

Dashboards are summary pages, as one single page with core visuals of the report. This is a page we present to executives to give them an overview of the most important numbers. From dashboards, we can dive into visuals.

Power BI Service is the way to go when it comes to Collaboration and Sharing Results. By using Power BI Service we can have interaction with the team. After creating the dashboard to share the report we need Power BI Service.

Power BI Mobile

Power BI Mobile is a mobile app that is available to download from the google play store and Apple AppStore.

This allows us to access our information, our dashboards, our visuals anywhere.

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