For Microsoft customers, Power BI Embedded is a good lightweight visualization layer. But many find it nearly impossible to predict costs or integrate security with the tool. If you have advanced embedding requirements, you may be better off with a solution that provides customizable embedded analytics with a pricing structure that aligns to your business model.
Power BI Embedded limitations include pricing, overall structure, and Microsoft’s roadmap for embedded analytics. Keep these three considerations in mind when considering Power BI Embedded.
1. Power BI Embedded’s Pricing Model Makes Forecasting Budgets Impossible
Microsoft takes an interesting approach to embedded pricing: Rather than charging an upfront fee, it has a metered system that charges software vendors $0.05 each time a user initiates a session. This approach makes it nearly impossible to forecast a budget. You never know how analytics will be used by your customers or organization. Ideally, your end users will be so thrilled with the analytics offerings you’re providing that they’ll want to create several reports every week and use them throughout their days. But at this level of adoption, charging on a per-session basis (like Power BI Embedded does) means risking over- or under-budgeting for your business intelligence.
2. Power BI Embedded Requires You to Be “All-In” on Azure
Not currently using Azure? Then you’re out of luck with Power BI Embedded. Microsoft powers its pricing model by requiring that companies be deployed on Azure in order to use Power BI Embedded. Of course you can always transition to Azure, but for many companies that means additional costs and resources to switch. Going all-in on Microsoft also means a risk of lock-in—and Microsoft has a history of increasing prices over time. By locking companies into its cloud
solutions, it will inevitably cost you more over the long run.
Unlike Power BI Embedded, Logi Analytics was developed to deploy embedded BI alongside your existing application servers. There is no need for additional investment in hardware, and no need to transition to a new cloud.
3. Microsoft Isn’t Focused on Embedding
Lately, Microsoft has invested heavily in improving the Power BI product—but that doesn’t mean innovations have filtered down to Power BI Embedded. In fact, Power BI and Power BI Embedded are two entirely separate products with distinct budgets and roadmaps. While Power BI has received heavy investments and seen success in the Gartner Magic Quadrant report, Power BI Embedded continues to be housed on the Azure site instead of its own domain and continues to maintain a business model that doesn’t scale.
Power BI Embedded has some clear limitations for companies with more advanced BI needs. In addition to the three limitations above, there are three technical areas in which Logi Analytics comes out above Power BI Embedded.