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Power BI Service and Mobile February 2019 Feature Summary

Headshot of article author Nikhil Gaekwad

February was yet another exciting and busy month for Power BI, as we rolled out many features that were highly requested by our customers and community. Here’s a recap of all the announcements:


Updates to Premium Capacity Metrics app

We kicked off February by releasing a new version of the Power BI Premium Capacity Metrics app to include new system metrics for workloads and total active dataset size in memory. The latest version ( of the app provides a comprehensive view of workload operations such as dataset and dataflow refreshes, dataset evictions, dataset queries, paginated report data retrieval/execution, and system metrics in the capacity for the past seven days. Don’t miss out – try it out for yourself by installing the app or learn more about the latest update here.

Export to PDF and filtered export for Power BI reports

You asked, we delivered. We added a new feature in the service that allows you export any of your Power BI reports to a PDF document. All you need to do is locate the File menu in the report action bar, open the dropdown, and you’ll see the new option to Export to PDF. Once you select it, the PDF will be generated and downloaded for you!

We didn’t just stop there. We supercharged the all export functionalities in Power BI reports by providing you an option to maintain the slicers, filters and other data views selected on the report to be respected in the exported document. Now, when you export to either PDF or PowerPoint, you’ll see the following pop-up window:

By default, we will be exporting the Current Values, which is what you see on the screen along with any other changes you’ve made across the report during that session. Learn more about export to PDF and filtered export.

On-demand e-mail subscriptions

Earlier this year, we announced time-based e-mail subscriptions to help you schedule a time for when you want your subscriptions to run. We further enhanced this feature by giving the ability to run any subscription you want on-demand for both dashboards and reports. If you need to send an e-mail right away, you can now do that by clicking the “Run now” button that appears next to the name of your subscription. This will immediately trigger an e-mail to be sent to you and/or any other user you’ve subscribed to that content. Learn more

Bulk operations in the Admin Portal

We made it much easier for admins to perform repetitive tasks efficiently. You no longer need to resort to PowerShell scripts to assign a user to multiple workspaces or delete hundreds of infringing embed codes, with the recent improvements in the admin portal, you can perform all of these tasks in a single operation. Check out the announcement blog to walk through an example of how you can use bulk operations for workspaces.

Help and support settings for Power BI users

We added a new setting in the admin portal that allows organizations to customize the help and support link in the Power BI help menu to point users to specific organizational content rather than the default Microsoft sites for Guided Learning, the Power BI community, and the Power BI support forum. All you needed to do is head over to the admin portal, select the Tenant settings page, and expand the ‘Publish “Get Help” information’ where you can provide appropriate URLs to your company’s sites for training documentation, discussion forums, and help desk. These parameters change the behavior of the Learn, Community, and Get help menu items in Power BI service. Learn more

Data lineage experience for dataflows

We announced a new user experience for visualizing the data lineage, starting from the data source down to the dataflows and between the linked dataflows within a workspace. With this experience, you can understand how artifacts relate to each other and to easily manage their BI dataflows projects in their organization. This release was the first step in our larger plans to address more challenges in Power BI lineage in the layer of dataflows, as well as datasets, reports, and dashboards. Learn more

Certified custom visuals settings

We added a new setting in the admin portal to give you more control over the usage of custom visuals within your organization. With this new setting, users within your organization can only view and use reports containing certified custom visuals. Visuals that are not certified will not be rendered. Learn more

Updates to Power BI mobile apps

There were multiple updates that went out in February for the mobile apps in various platforms. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Visio visuals – We enabled Single sign on (SSO) in Visio visuals. There are no additional sign-in steps required when viewing report with Visio visual in the mobile apps.
  • Dashboard commenting in Power BI Mobile Windows app – We lit up the awesome commenting feature on dashboards on the Windows app that allows users to discuss their data directly on dashboards or specific tiles within them.
  • Support for new iPad Pro – We updated the iOS Power BI app to be optimized for the newly released iPad Pro, both 11 and 12.9 inch layout.


Power BI Premium Deployment and Management Whitepaper

We released a new Power BI Premium Deployment and Management whitepaper (authored by Peter Myers) to help you successfully deploy our solution within your enterprise. It covers multiple topics such as deploying, scaling, troubleshooting and managing a Power BI Premium capacity. Check it out here.

Roadmap updates

We use the Power BI section in the Business Application Release Notes to share details on what’s coming in the next three to six months.  These release notes are updated weekly with details on shipping dates, screenshots, and new announcements. Here’s what we disclosed recently: