What is Power BI

Last week I delivered an introductory presentation about Power BI covering all the features of it in the SQL Server Universe user group meeting. I got a fair amount of time to showcase the features of Power BI to the audience.

I concluded my presentation giving the following definition to Power BI from Microsoft’s point of view or what Microsoft has been trying to do.


Productizing self service BI tools and services coupled with the company’s cloud based organizational strategy

Personally I think Microsoft is determined to have a product in the self service BI market, they’ve been trying to bring all the tools and services under one umbrella named Power BI.

It works perfectly well, it’s a very impressive product to deliver a showcase. I have delivered product introductory presentations for Azure and Windows 8 in other user group meetings. Compared to them Power BI is a small product which draws the interest of few people, but it didn’t fail to impress the audience, so thought of writing about Power BI.

Power BI has components categorized under 3 topics.

Excel Features

  • Power Query
  • Power Pivot
  • Power View
  • Power Map

Power BI for Office 365

  • Power BI Sites
  • Power BI Q&A
  • Query and Data Management
  • Power BI Windows App

IT Infrastructure service for Power BI

  • Provision Power BI for Office 365
  • Power BI Admin Center
  • Data Management Gateway

Excel features are available for download for free. You can download them from this URL

Detailed blog posts about each component will follow in the coming days.


3 thoughts on “What is Power BI

  1. Hi Thuru,

    Thanks for the article. I am very new to Power BI. I am trying to create a data source, after creating the gateway. After entering the connection provider, server name and database name, I clicked on Credentials button. I got a pop-up window with this message “We will now take you to the download page to install a plugin to launch the credentials wizard.”. I clicked on yes, take me to the download page. It takes me to google chrome webstore with Microsoft tools launcher opened up in the popup. Nothing happens after that. I have checked and noticed the oneclick application extension is already installed. Not sure how to proceed. I have logged into office 365 portal in google chrome and the reason behind this is I am unable to open the portal in IE10.

    Thanks in advance for your help.


  2. Hi All,

    Resetting the IE to default settings helped.


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