What are subscriptions in Power BI Service

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Power BI enables us to effectively analyze and interpret large amounts of data, allowing for informed decision-making. However, a company truly develops a data culture when all employees have the ability to access, analyze and share these reports collectively.

In our Power BI pricing blog, we have discussed Power BI pro vs Power BI premium pricing and licensing, but Power BI Service offers an additional feature called subscriptions, which allows for the automatic and periodic distribution of reports to a group of individuals, similar to a newsletter.

To add a Subscription to Power BI Service, we need to meet at least one of the following requirements:

  • Power BI Pro or Premium licensing per user (PPU)
  • Access to a workspace backed by a Power BI Premium capability
  • Permission to access the specific report or dashboard

What are subscriptions in Power BI?

Subscriptions in the Power BI Service are a feature that enables the sharing of reports on a regular basis. The author or administrator of the workspace can send an email with a snapshot and a link to a Power BI Service report to a specific group of individuals who may be interested in the report. This allows recipients to receive the report on a recurring basis.

To use this feature, the report must first be published to Power BI Service, which is the cloud-based platform where the report can be edited, viewed, and read via the web. To publish the report, the user must open the report in Power BI Desktop, click on the "Publish" button in the top toolbar, and choose the desired workspace to host the report.

Creating Subscriptions in Power BI

To create a subscription in Power BI Service, the user must first access the report within the selected workspace. On the top toolbar, the user will see the option to "Subscribe." Clicking on this option will open a panel on the right side of the screen. Within this panel, the user must click on "Add a new subscription" and fill out the required fields to schedule the report for distribution.

When creating a subscription in Power BI Service, the user is prompted to provide the following information:

  • Subscription name: This is the title of the subscription that will be sent, used to differentiate it from other subscriptions created for the same report.
  • Various options:
    • Execute: Allows the user to send the email immediately after saving and closing the subscription.
    • Activate: Enables or disables the subscription.
    • Trash icon: Allows deletion of the currently edited subscription.
  • Choose recipients: A space to enter the email addresses of the individuals who will receive the report. A minimum of one recipient is required.
  • Subject: A field to provide context or additional information about the type of report sent. This will be the subject of the email that the subscriber will receive.
  • Report Page: Allows the user to choose which page of the Power BI report will be the first to appear when the recipient views the report.
  • Frequency: Allows the option of scheduling the publication of the model according to the needs and preferences required. You can choose to send an email every time there is an update, do it daily, weekly, or monthly.
  • Scheduled time: This allows you to define the time at which the mail will be sent, as well as the corresponding time zone.
  • Start/end date: In this space, you can choose the period in which the report will be available to subscribers. The end date is optional because it may be the case that we do not want to stop sending our report on the deadline date. Also
  • Also, include Checkboxes to be activated according to the needs and preferences of the person who added the subscription.
  • Permission to access the report in Power BI: Allows you to give subscribers permission to open and view the report.
  • Link to report in Power BI: Create a call to action in the sent email that is a link to the Power BI report.
  • Preview image: It allows us to include in the body of the email, a preview of the report page that we have previously selected.

How to manage Power BI Service subscriptions

To manage the Power BI Service subscriptions, we have the " Manage all subscriptions" option available at the bottom of the panel. Here we will find a list with all the subscriptions created, thus making it much more accessible and quicker to manage.

How does the subscriber receive this email?

You will receive the email in your inbox like any other email, with the sender being listed as Microsoft Power BI. The email will include the subject as entered during the creation of the subscription, a brief description of the report written by the person who created the subscription, and a snapshot of the report. You can include a link to the report in Power BI by selecting the "Link to report in Power BI" option during the creation of the subscription, this way the recipient will also receive a link to access the report directly.

Take advantage of all the features of Power BI

You can automate the distribution of reports and keep your team updated with the latest data using subscriptions in Power BI Service. This feature allows you to tailor the report-sharing system to the needs of the recipients and is easy to use. Power BI offers many other features that can assist in making better decisions in your daily operations.

If you want to fully utilize the capabilities of Power BI, consider talking to our Power BI consultants. At Dynamics Square, we are experts in Microsoft tools and can provide guidance and support through every step of your training.


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