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Limitations of Power BI

11th Oct, 2023
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    Limitations of Power BI

    Power BI Tools

    Every business wishes to establish its brand in the market as well as grow exponentially. This is where business intelligence plays a crucial role, as it is a very important factor in the process of branding and other decision-making processes. To help you with an effective decision-making process and get down to conclusions, Microsoft presents a very riveting analytics tool, Power BI. Before we proceed, let's have a look at what big data is and the types of big data

    Also, do not forget to read about the power BI Developer future

    The primary tools of Power BI include Power Query, which is used for extraction and transformation; Power Pivot, which is used to model and analyze; Power View and Map, which is used to visualize data. The Power BI Designer combines various separate tools into an all-in-one application that removes all its dependencies on Excel or Office. The PowerBI Site or service,  PowerBI.com, is widely used to share reports, datasets, and dashboards.

    Apart from these,  Power BI allows various other tools which will be very advantageous for you. But there are a few cons as well. Read along to know what are the limitations of PowerBI that you might come across while working. 

    Limitations of Power BI

    Limitations of Power BI

    1. Microsoft Excel power users will benefit best

    It can be noted that most of the business users that you will come across will not be power users of Microsoft Excel. In case the end-users of your business intelligence model are business users, then it should be noted that Microsoft Power BI will be very challenging to use, especially if you are not a Microsoft Excel power user. 

    2. Complex in nature

    This is one of the major drawbacks as Microsoft has designed Power BI in a very complex manner. Power BI has a long list of components, and it is difficult to understand which component you may need. To name a few, there’s Power Bi Desktop, the Power BI Gateway, the Power BI Services,  etc. Moreover, there are no moving parts available for this software, which might make you spend a lot of time and energy trying to figure out the function of each part. This makes the product even more challenging to troubleshoot, which leads to an increase in the total cost of ownership. 

    3. Data quality

    Microsoft Power BI does not provide any data cleansing solution. Meaning it assumes that the data you are pulling has been cleaned up well in advance, and is of high quality. So, in case you need data cleansing aptitude, you might need to look for an alternate solution to cleanse your data. 

    4. Does not handle large data sources properly

    If you have a large data set that needs to be analyzed, Microsoft Power BI will not be the best option for you. You might face trouble in connecting and importing large datasets, as well as problems such as slow performance and time-outs. 

    5. Performance Issues

    Sometimes Power BI might face performance issues as it has been observed that it cannot process more than 20000-30000 rows without running into issues for some queries. It might just timeout during the processing. 

    To opt out of facing this issue, you can create multiple queries in order to cover the full range of data and split them up according to the dates. 

    6. Bulky User Interface

    The formula help window and side par often block the view of vital, making the Power BI user interface very bulky.  The making of a scrolling dashboard will require a lot of effort since it is not a native feature.

    7. Limited Sharing of Data

     Reports and dashboards can be shared only with users with the same email domains or those with their email domains listed in your Office 365 tenant.

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    To sum it all up, if your organization is Microsoft favored and has a group of Microsoft Excel power users, then the chances are very high that Power BI will work well within your organization. Even with a few limitations of Power BI, it is been widely used in more and more businesses. Professionals working on Excel charts, pivot tables, and formulas can use  Power BI to convert data quickly into information. You can also take an online course like Analyzing Data with Microsoft Power BI Certification to upskill yourself.  

    Have you employed Power BI or Power BI Pro? Leave your comment below to share your experiences with us!

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1Is Power BI free to use?

    Power BI offers a free version (Power BI Desktop), but there are also paid options like Power BI Pro and Power BI Premium, which offer additional features and capabilities.

    2How can I import data into Power BI?

    You can import data into Power BI by connecting to various sources like Excel, databases, or web services.

    3How do I collaborate with team members on a report?

    You can collaborate by working on the same report simultaneously in Power BI Desktop or by using the commenting and collaboration features in the Power BI service.

    4Do viewers need a Power BI license to access shared reports?

    In most cases, viewers need a Power BI Pro license to access shared reports, but there are options for sharing with external users as well.


    Utpal Kar

    Blog Author

    Utpal Kar, a seasoned Corporate Trainer, excels in conducting training programs encompassing Advanced Excel, Power BI, Python, SQL Server, and Unix/Linux technologies. Notably, he holds a Python Certification from LinkedIn, showcasing his proficiency in the domain. Currently serving as a Corporate Trainer at Innovative Technology Solutions, Utpal specializes in Python, VBA Macro, Advance Excel, Power BI, and PostgreSQL, along with a breadth of other languages like .Net and Java. Prior to this role, he made significant contributions at NIIT Ltd., providing technical support and solutions to Franchisee Centres. With over 4 years at Innovative Technology Solutions, Utpal remains dedicated to enhancing skill sets and driving performance for professionals across various industries.

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