I generally see quite a lot of questions as to why certain features are only available in Power BI premium.

In this blog post below, I am hoping that I can explain as to why there is a cost associated to them.

Power BI Pro

Let me start by saying when I log in with Power BI Pro, I am using a shared infrastructure.

This means that for a lower cost I can share the infrastructure, which is like travelling on an airplane.

Travelling with a lot of people on an expensive airplane makes it relatively cheap to travel. Whilst if I had to do the same trip on my own airplane it would be very expensive.

That is why Power BI Pro is really cheap in my personal opinion for what you are getting!

Power BI Premium

Let me get into the guts of this blog post.

I hope that after reading below, it will become clearer as to why Power BI Premium comes at a cost.

Whilst I was at Redmon this year, I was very fortunate to be in a meeting with Matthew Roche, where I got the best explanation as to why there is a cost associated to Power BI Premium.

“Anything that requires to compute something comes at a cost”

For those who are unsure what compute is, it is defined as “to calculate an answer or amount by using a machine” as defined in the Cambridge Dictionary

What this means in the world of Power BI, anything that requires additional computing resources has a cost associated to run the compute and in order to make Power BI financially viable the cost is for the compute is put into the Power BI Premium licensing model.

What I would like to point out is that as Power BI Premium evolves, the price point currently stays at the same price, but you are getting a LOT more value for the price.

For example, when Power BI Premium started it just had dedicated capacity and automatic refreshes.

Then came along Incremental refreshes, after which came dataflows, geolocation and paginated reports.

There is a significant amount added to Power BI Premium with no extra cost!

As you can see below here are some of the premium features all require compute (Which means there is a cost to run this)


As you have seen above, I hope that have shown you what and why Power BI Premium has additional features and why there is a cost associated to them.

If there are any questions or suggestions, please leave them in the comments section below.