As with every month it is with great excitement to see what updates there are to Power BI. I have also included any other related Business Intelligence updates.

Enjoy the read

Power BI – October Desktop Update

There have been a whole host of updates to the Power BI Desktop, and here are the relevant details below.


The biggest update in this month’s release is the availability of Bookmarks. This is a fantastic feature and now enables you to really capture that story telling with your data. It is really easy and simple to configure.

What is also a great feature is that once you have your bookmarked steps, you can still interact with the data in each step. So for instance if someone is asking details about a particular bookmark you can stop and click on items in your visuals to answer the questions.

Next is the selection pane as shown above. What this allows you to do is to either show or hide each element on your report page.

This is great both for if you want to individually get to the properties of an item on a complex page with a lot of visuals.

As well as if you want to create an impression that visuals are dynamically changing you can do this with the combination of the bookmarks.

Another feature related to Bookmarks is the ability to link an image or shape to a Bookmark.

What this then means is that you can give the feeling of navigating from a visual to a page with the filter in place. The example that the Power BI Team shows in their video is having a selection of countries. You click on a country flag and that takes you to the report showing the report with the flag that you click on. Which is actually a bookmark.

Along with the bookmarks feature is the ability to spotlight a specific chart of visual as part of your bookmarking process. This is handy when you want to give specific focus to an item on the report.

There have been some additional improvements to the Scatter charts, where now where you can change the shape type for the different scatters.

As well as they have improved how many items you can see from 3000 to 10 000.


In the Analytics area for Power BI they have now created the functionality to be able to create Quick Measures with SSAS Live Conenctions. This is great for when there is a requirement to quickly create another measure that does not exist on an SSAS live connection.

There is also a new quick measure called “Sales from New Customers”, which allows you to see your sales from New Customers.

There is now also the capability for when you have created Cell-Level formatting in your SSAS instance. This will now be honoured when you bring the data into your Power BI Model.

Data Connectivity

There is a new connector for Vertica, which if you use it you can now leverage it inside of Power BI.

There has also been updates for the SAP BW Connector with additional member properties.

And finally, there has been improved Help access from within Power BI Desktop. There is now additional items on the Help Ribbon in Power BI Desktop.

You can find the video as well as all the other details here: Power BI Desktop October Feature Summary

Power BI – Email Subscriptions for Apps

As you can see above on the left-hand side is the option to subscribe to a Dashboard in my App. And on the right-hand side is the option to subscribe to the report in my App.

This now allows your users who have access to Apps, to now be able to get the information in their Inbox daily.

You can read about it here: Introducing email subscriptions for Power BI apps

Power BI – Monthly Service & Mobile Update

There was a whole host of updates to the Power BI Service in the past month, some of which I was unaware of until reading the blog post. So please find all the relevant details below.

You can now share Dashboards with Free Power BI Users if your App Workspace is on a Premium Capacity. This is great, because before this update you could only share Apps with Free Users.

With Power BI Premium, there now is the option to change how you want to allocate your V-Cores. If you have a larger Premium capacity you can then modify the settings so that you could allocate it to a smaller SKU.

Leading on from the above is you now can very quickly in one click scale up or scale down your Capacity. Once again this is based on the number of V-Cores that you have purchased.

Now there is also the capability to use PubNub Blocks to push data into the Power BI Rest API

There was also an update to the Power BI On-Premise Gateway with an updated version for Personal mode which is in line with the Enterprise mode. The support for Government clouds in Personal mode. As well as the Gateway now has the September update for the MashUp Engine.

You can now also filter reports in the Power BI Mobile App, which is something that is often needed because you only want to see the data you are interested in.

There is now support for Visio across all the platforms for Power BI including the Web as well as mobile platforms.

And finally, there was an update rolled out for improved performance for the Usage Metrics, which in the past did take a while to load, but now is a LOT quicker.

You can read up about it all here: Power BI Service and Mobile September Feature Summary

Power BI – AI Recommendations for Apps

Now when you search for Apps within your Organization it will use the AI engine to suggest what other Apps might be of interest to you.

Not only will this allow you to be able to potentially have insights to data that you did not know were there. But it also honours the Security that is put in place for access to Apps. If you do not have access to the App, then you will not see the recommendation.

You can find all the details here: Announcing AI-powered app recommendations: getting the right insights to the right people