How can you add Power BI Tiles & Reports in your Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint Documents or on a SharePoint site?
Rui Romano of DevScope has built an application that allows you to insert Power BI visualizations into Office documents.
Power BI Tiles COM Add-in from DevScope
You can get the Power BI Tiles & Reports COM Add-in by clicking the add button in the Office Store or you can search for the plugin from the store button in the ribbon of Microsoft Excel or PowerPoint. On my Microsoft Surface Pro 3 I find the store option in the File tab of the Office Ribbon. The COM Add-in places itself in the Insert tab of the Microsoft Excel or PowerPoint ribbon.
If you choose to install the Power BI Tiles COM Add-in from DevScope by hitting the store button, you need to install it manually in Microsoft Excel and manually install it in Microsoft PowerPoint. In other words two installations. 🙂
Power BI Tiles for Microsoft PowerPoint
After installation of the COM Add-in from the Office store you open Microsoft PowerPoint and go the the Insert Tab of the Office Ribbon. On the right you see the Insert Power BI Tiles button. When you click on it you will get a yellow DevScope Power BI Tiles pop-up window with a few options.
You can “Add Power BI Tiles & Reports in your Office Documents” using a couple of options:
- From Power BI
- From a Public Report
I used the first option, which redirects you the the Office 365 login screen. This step does the authentication with Power BI and you need to grant the Power BI Tiles COM Add-in permissions to read your reports in order to insert your visualizations.
After the authentication step you can choose the visualizations from your Power BI Dashboard that you would like to share. If you want to add more visualizations you simply add another container via the Insert Power BI Tiles button.
Power BI Tiles for Microsoft Excel
Rui Romano has build also a version of the COM Add-in for Microsoft Excel. I’ve tested it and it works exactly the same as described in the above section of Power BI Tiles for Microsoft PowerPoint.
While it can be useful in some usage-scenarios (for example when you distribute Excel Workbooks) it can be useful to add a visualization from Power BI. Personally I think that most analysts and data professionals do a lot of their hard reporting and analysis in Microsoft Excel. So I publish tables and simple charts to Power BI using Power BI publisher for Microsoft Excel.
But I have the Power BI Tiles COM Add-in for Microsoft Excel installed anyway, so I can do the complete round of exchanging data and visualizations.
Concluding thoughts and wrap-up
With the Power BI Tiles COM Add-in from DevScope you can add interactive tiles from your Power BI dashboards easily to your Microsoft PowerPoint slides or Microsoft Excel workbook.
Personally I see the most value in the ability to add Power BI dashboard tiles to a PowerPoint presentation. I often do the hard calculations or data structuring in Microsoft Excel and perform the visualizations in Power BI, or simply publish charts and tables to Power BI with Power BI publisher for Microsoft Excel. This means that I personally don’t use the DevScope Tiles add-in for Excel a lot.
- Power BI Tiles for Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint is free
- Power BI Tiles for SharePoint isn’t free but can be installed from the Office Store for a small fee of $2.99/month.
I haven’t tested the Power BI Tiles for SharePoint Add-in. However I can see excellent value if you are collaborating a lot with your team through SharePoint sites.
Other cool COM Add-in for Microsoft Office I’ve recently reviewed are:
- Power BI publisher for Microsoft Excel
- Transform Data by Example for Microsoft Excel
- Onetastic is addin for Microsoft OneNote
Finally you can check out the pptPlex COM Add-in that give Microsoft PowerPoint Prezi-like capabilities (still works with Microsoft Office 2016). 🙂
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