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Understanding Power BI Mobile Apps: A Comprehensive Guide

28 June 2023

Understanding Power BI Mobile Apps: A Comprehensive Guide

Power BI Mobile Apps is a versatile tool that brings data analytics to your fingertips. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the world of Power BI Mobile Apps and help you tap into the power of mobile business intelligence. There are many essential elements of Power BI, and Power BI Mobile Apps is just one piece of the puzzle.

What is Power BI?

Power BI, short for Power Business Intelligence, is a suite of business analytics tools that provide interactive visualisations with self-service business intelligence capabilities. It comes in three main forms: Power BI Desktop, Power BI Service, and Power BI Mobile Apps. But what does each one do?

Power BI Desktop, primarily used by data analysts and statisticians, is a Windows desktop application for creating interactive reports. Power BI Service, often referred to as "Power BI online", is a cloud-based platform featuring dashboards, reports, and datasets. And finally, Power BI Mobile Apps are specially designed to bring the functionality of Power BI Service to your mobile device.

The Power of Power BI Mobile Apps

Today, we're focusing on Power BI Mobile Apps, a mobile data analytics tool that's revolutionising the way businesses interact with their data. The ability to access and analyse data anytime, anywhere, is no longer a luxury but a necessity in our fast-paced business environment. How do Power BI Mobile Apps fulfil this need?

Imagine you're away from your desk and need to make a data-driven decision on the spot. Instead of waiting to get back to your computer, you simply pull out your smartphone, open the Power BI Mobile App, and all the data you need is right there. Real-time dashboards, interactive reports, data alerts – it's all available at your fingertips.

Features of Power BI Mobile Apps

So what can Power BI Mobile Apps do? Let's dive into the key features.

1. Real-time Dashboards

Get a bird's-eye view of your business with real-time dashboards. These dashboards, composed of tiles, give you up-to-date data visualisations that are easy to comprehend. Whether you're tracking sales, monitoring web traffic, or overseeing production, dashboards make it simple and straightforward.

2. Interactive Reports

Move beyond static reports with Power BI's interactive reports. You can filter and highlight data, delve into details with drill-down features, and much more. Interactive reports turn passive readers into active participants, leading to more insightful data exploration.

3. Data Alerts

Never miss a critical data point again with data alerts. You can set up alerts for specific metrics, and when these metrics hit certain thresholds, you'll receive a notification on your mobile device. This way, you can respond swiftly to changing business conditions; your gateway to keeping your reports in real time.

4. Q&A Question Box

Do you have specific queries about your data? Simply type or speak them into the Q&A question box, and Power BI will provide answers in the form of data visualisations.

5. Sharing and Annotating

Power BI Mobile Apps not only let you access reports and dashboards, but they also enable you to share them with others. You can add annotations to your reports before sharing, making collaboration a breeze. Whether you're seeking input or providing insights, sharing and annotating can be done with just a few taps.

Supported Devices and Platforms

Power BI Mobile Apps are compatible with most popular operating systems, including iOS and Android. The experience is slightly different on tablets versus smartphones, given the larger screen size on tablets. However, both versions offer the same core functionalities.

With iOS, you can download Power BI Mobile Apps on iPhones, iPads, and even iPod Touch devices running iOS 13 or later. Android users, meanwhile, will need to be running Android version 5.0 or later.

Power BI Mobile Apps also support Windows tablets and phones, but as of 2021, Microsoft is no longer updating the Windows version.

What might these platform-specific differences mean for you? For instance, Android users can benefit from home screen widgets to instantly access their favourite dashboards. Meanwhile, iOS users can use Siri Shortcuts to quickly open specific reports or dashboards. The platform you choose will depend on your unique business needs and preferences.

Comparing Power BI Mobile Apps with Desktop and Service Versions

Though they share the core aim of delivering powerful business intelligence, the different versions of Power BI have their own strengths. Let's explore these differences.

Power BI Desktop

Ideal for creating detailed, static reports and in-depth data modelling, Power BI Desktop is the workhorse of the Power BI family. However, its functionality is confined to Windows systems, and it does not offer real-time accessibility or alerts, which are unique to Power BI Mobile Apps.

Power BI Service

Also known as "Power BI online", this version offers cloud-based data analytics. It's perfect for sharing and collaborating on interactive reports, and it's accessible from any computer with internet access. However, it doesn't have the mobility or instant accessibility that comes with the Power BI Mobile Apps.

Power BI Mobile Apps

With Power BI Mobile Apps, real-time access to dashboards and interactive reports is the key advantage. Data-driven decisions can be made on-the-go, making it perfect for busy professionals. It also offers unique features like data alerts, making it easier to stay on top of changing business conditions.

Table: Power BI – Desktop, Service, and Mobile Comparison

  Power BI Desktop Power BI Service Power BI Mobile Apps
Real-Time Dashboards  
Interactive Reports
Data Alerts    
Sharing & Collaborating
Mobile Accessibility    

Frequently Asked Questions About Power BI Mobile Apps

1. How do I download and install Power BI Mobile Apps?

You can download Power BI Mobile Apps from the App Store for iOS devices, or the Google Play Store for Android devices. After downloading, you simply log in with your Power BI account to access your dashboards and reports.

2. Can I create reports on Power BI Mobile Apps?

While Power BI Mobile Apps allow you to view and interact with reports and dashboards, creating reports is currently only supported on Power BI Desktop and Power BI Service.

3. How secure are Power BI Mobile Apps?

Microsoft ensures high security for Power BI Mobile Apps by providing features like biometric authentication, mobile device management, and data encryption.

4. Can I share reports and dashboards using Power BI Mobile Apps?

Yes, you can easily share dashboards and reports with others directly from the Power BI Mobile Apps. You can even annotate reports before sharing.


Power BI Mobile Apps bring the power of data analytics right into your pocket. With features like real-time dashboards, interactive reports, and data alerts, you can make data-driven decisions anytime, anywhere. Whether you're a seasoned data analyst or a busy executive, Power BI Mobile Apps can revolutionise the way you interact with your business data.

About the author: Craig Hartzel
Craig is a self-confessed geek who loves to play with and write about technology. Craig's especially interested in systems relating to e-commerce, automation, AI and Analytics.

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