Which Of These Two Should I Learn- Power BI Or Tableau?

Posted by Kevin Booth on May, 10, 2021 10:05

A Glance at Tableau and Power BI

Before you decide as to which one you should learn, let’s investigate and compare the features of both these tools. You must keep in mind your requirements and budget, both. Features are many, but do you need them? Or do you need a feature that is not available in the free version? The Microsoft-powered Power BI has a plethora of analytics features whereas Tableau is known for its beautiful visuals. Tableau is like a big machine gun used to tackle a huge dataset with ample budget. Microsoft BI is a sharp tool that comes in handy for a medium-size enterprise.

Power BI

Power BI is a powerful data analytics tool funded by Microsoft. It serves business intelligence features with lucid visualisations. You get this app as a cloud-based service in a desktop-style interface. Small scale data warehouse abilities like data unearthing, data transformation, and user-friendly dashboards are core Power BI features of this tool

Power BI Dashboard Rerport Sample

Power BI Features

  • Export Dashboard
  • Data Modelling
  • Connect to Data Source
  • Custom visualization
  • Natural language (Q/A)

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Tableau, on the other hand, is a specialized data visualization tool that is used for making business intelligence decisions. It can transform any unstructured raw data to a structured, understandable format with very less coding or other technical expertise. You can do visualizations either in worksheets or dashboards to provide insights and generate dashboards.


Features of Tableau

  • Blending of Data
  • Less Technical Knowledge required
  • Fast and Real-time analysis
  • Data accumulation
  • DAX Query

Power BI Vs. Tableau

Recently, both the tools, power BI and Tableau, have proven their mettle in the BI industry. Power BI came onto the scene before Tableau but has been a very stiff competitor. Separately they have their benefits, plus points, and weaknesses. It depends on the kind of requirement you have

Now we will see how they fare against each other in specific details

  • Deployment
  • Functionality
  • User Interface
  • Cost
  • Data Visualisation
  • Bulk data handling capabilities
  • Product support
  • Programming tools support
  • Integration
  1. Deployment

Deployment simply means applying things in real life and real-time. When you compare it to Power BI, Tableau has more options to explore in terms of deployment. Tableau offers the cloud-based as well as installable model, but Power BI is delivered in Software as a service model only. If you don’t need the SaaS BI service, then Power Bi is not for you.

  1. Functionality

Let’s see how both the tools work in their functionality and working. Tableau can answer simple user queries, but you can do the same in Power BI. Tableau has more in-depth power processing as compared to Power BI

  1. User Interface

Tableau has a more attractive and useful User Interface and easily a dashboard can be created but this comes with a cost. It is a little bit difficult to learn the dashboard of Tableau as compared to Power BI. If you don’t have much fancy usage, then go for Power BI.

Few More
  1. Cost

Tableau costs more than Power BI as it has many more features and can handle a huge amount of data. Power BI is cheap with a free version also. The free versions have very limited features and you can get the professional version for just 10 USD. Tableau costs around 35 USD/month for each user. It is a better idea to start a small business with Power BI and slowly move on to Tableau as the need grows

  1. Bulk Data Handling Capabilities

Tableau can handle large chunks of data, unlike Power BI which can handle only a small amount of data and lacks the import feature.

  1. Product Support

No such huge difference exists in terms of customer support. 

  1. Programming Tools Support

Both languages have support for programming languages. Tableau has extremely solid support for the R programming language which is very good with data analytics capabilities.

  1. Integration

Third-party software support and integration are supported in both tools. Tableau has better support and plugin with R as compared to Power BI.Whereas analytical shops mainly gain from Power BI due to excel features giving them a great advantage.

  1. Data Visualisation

Tableau has some very specific visualisation tool which makes it more popular. Tableau has much better and powerful visualisation features than Power BI as it is more focused on analytics features and report generation.

Our Advice

As you can see so far that it is wrong to compare the tools head-on. Both have unique features which the other ones do not. It is best to assess your requirement and budget before making any decision about the tool. It is better to start with small tools like Power BI and then move on to other powerful tools like Tableau. Price is also a factor while considering your project. So go through all the aforementioned parameters before choosing the final one.

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