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Changes to Power BI in the January and February 2019 updates
Part five of a seven-part series of blogs

There wasn't an official January update, although there were improvements announced to Power BI Service. This blog lists these, and also new features to wrap titles in visuals, apply rounded corners and change the default way in which visuals interact with each other.

  1. Power BI Updates for January and February 2019
  2. Word wrapping titles in visuals
  3. Rounded borders
  4. Improvements to the way visuals interact with each other
  5. Scheduled (time-based) subscriptions for your reports (this blog)
  6. Miscellaneous updates to Power BI Service
  7. Power BI features waiting in preview, as of February 2019

For a cumulative list of all of the updates to Power BI Desktop since November 2016 see this blog, or have a look at the Power BI courses that we run.

Posted by Andy Brown on 15 February 2019

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Scheduled (time-based) subscriptions for your reports

I'm a huge fan of this feature of SQL Server Reporting Services, so it's nice to see that it's now available in Power BI Service too.  What it allows you to do is to email reports to people according to a pre-set schedule.  For example you could create these subscriptions:

Report Sent to Frequency 
Summary of daily sales CEO
Marketing director
At 10pm every weekday night. 
Regional sales Each regional manager Every Friday morning

You can create up to 24 subscriptions for each report, allowing you to send hourly updates should you so choose!

There is one massive caveat.  Not only do you have to have a paid Power BI account (either Pro or Premium) to create a subscription, but every email recipient of your report updates must have a paid account too.

Creating a subscription

Let's say you have a report that you want to send out to the world:

A report

For reasons best known to yourself, you want to create a subscription for this report.

To begin the process, click on the Subscribe button:

Subscribe button

This button is at the top right of the Power BI Service window.

You can now fill in details of your subscription - here's an idea of what you can do:

Subscription dialog box

This will email page one of the chosen report to me at 10.30 each morning - mercifully for only one day, though, as I've set an end date.

What you get when Power BI sends a report out 

Here's what the above request comes through as:

Report sent through

The report email as it hit my inbox.

The attachment is just a picture of this page of the report:

Attached picture

The attachment for the email above.

So it's a fairly basic implementation, but it could easily change someone's working life! 

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