While Power BI may be a more widely used and discussed BI tool, the market offers a range of other alternatives, such as Tableau or Looker. Each tool has its own unique features and advantages, which differentiate it from Power BI and make it either less or more suitable for your use.

But which tool should you choose?

We’ve selected a few of these to compare and contrast based on criteria such as features, price or user-friendliness. Keep on reading to figure out what tool is just right for you.

Tableau

Data 

Unlike Power BI, Tableau can connect to Hadoop databases. While Power BI enables extracton of data from Azure, Salesforce and Google analytics, Tableau provides better access to data residing in the cloud and connection to Hadoop databases. To add, Tableau also identifies resources automatically. Furthermore, Tableau can handle larger volumes of data than Power BI

Integrations and connections

Tableau allows you to see all connections within your account level right when you log in. Its connection is more involved as you need to identify exactly which data you want to upload into the tool. As a result, knowing what data you want to look at before your start making connections would be helpful. Power BI provides a similar service through the “Get Data” button, but to a limited extent and usually requires a short authorization process. 

Features

Power Bi boasts with real-time data access and useful drag and drop features, which help you speed up the entire visualization process and are suitable for new users. While Tableau’s features are more powerful, they’re less intuitive – sometimes even being hidden behind menus. Tableau is still easy to use, but knowing your data sets will definitely come in handy. 

Price

Tableau is free for registered students and offers a 14-day free trial. The paid version starts at $35/month. 

 

Qlik 

Data

Qlik acts as the central location for the efficient development and sharing of apps, data stories and insights. In addition, Qlik unifies all data, even from diverging data sources. The platform displays all your data, but the irrelevant is “greyed out”. 

Features

Power BI supports a drag and drop configuration, which makes it more intuitive and suitable for users without a programming background. In addition, it is much easier to adapt to if one is already familiar with other Microsoft’s products, such as Office 365 or SQL Server. In comparison to Power BI, however, Qlik also offers a wider range of visualizations and presentations you can choose from. While both offer advanced embedded analytics, Power BI can demonstrate proven results. 

Qlik was created with a “mobile-first” approach, meaning it has a full-mobile interface and allows the user to seamlessly move between desktop, tablet and smartphone. 

User-friendliness

Qlik is undoubtedly one of the most flexible BI tools. However, it is a more robust and difficult tool to master as it caters to analytic purposes and more advanced users – especially due to its high level of detailing. In comparison, Power BI is suitable for users of any skill with no necessary analytical knowledge. 

Price

Qlik offers a 30-day free trial. The paid version starts at $30/month. 

 

CXAIR Platform

Data

Predominantly used in Finance, Healthcare and Retail, CXAIR Platform has no data size restrictions allowing its users to collect as much data from as many sources as is necessary for the optimization of their company’s functioning. This tool also provides a so-called Real-Time Data View, which is demonstrated by instant reports and feeding data directly to all included parties. 

Features

CXAIR Platform uses the Apache Lucene search engine technology, which provides rapid data retrieval for a uniquely fast user experience. In addition, it offers advanced security options. These options help protect the company’s confidential information. CXAIR Platform also offers the pseudonymisation of data for security purposes. 

Prices

CXAIR Platform offers neither a free version nor a free trial. The paid version starts at $6,000. 

 

Looker

Overview

Looker is completely web-based and thus eliminates the need for a desktop client. The platform offers a range of capabilities, which take a different approach to analytics than other platforms do. One of such is the collaborative sharing of data, which makes Looker a great collaboration tool.

Data

Unlike Power BI or Tableau, Looker requires a full semantic model for storing your business information. As a result, there needs to be upfront work put into the data before it can be used in Looker. It must be said that this different approach might either be welcomed or shunned by individual users, depending on their preference. In addition, Looker will require an analytics/MPP database to perform optimally, requiring additional funds from your budget. 

Features

The platform uses a unique modeling language LookML, which is exclusive to Looker and differentiates it from other platforms. This language is defined as a better way to write SQL and define queries. In addition to in-built visualizations, Looker users can also create custom ones.

Price

Looker offers a free trial/demo. The paid version starts at $300 – $500/month for up to 10 users. 

 

Sisense

Overview

Sisense is in the cloud, on premises and as a hybrid deployment. Sisense allows for the analysis and visualization of large amounts of data, complex data sets and/or data from a big range of sources. 

Features

Sisense can connect to long-term data sets with its Elasticube tools, which import the data directly into the software. In addition, a company can connect to a third-party software with a live connection that shows the data, but doesn’t save it in Sisense. However, its natural language features have some limitations. 

User-friendliness 

Sisense tools are designed so that little to no IT resources will be required. In addition, if the user lacks SQL query experience, they will have to be quite familiar with all the data they import. As a result, Sisense could be seen as too complex for a self-service BI tool. While the company is working on improving this, in its current form, Sisense caters more to average and highly skilled business analysts than to commoners. 

Price

Sisense offers a free trial. The paid version starts at $42/month. 

 

Zoho Analytics 

Data

Zoho connects to a range of data sources, including cloud storage, CRM systems, social media or e-commerce platforms. Additionally, it offers auto-joining tables, which automatically merge tables linked by a Lookup column. Furthermore, the maximum file import size is unlimited. 

Features

Zoho offers managers in-depth analysis through pre-built formulas and functions, which increase their business intelligence. This platform serves as a great tool for sharing and collaboration: users with access can publish reports or send them via email. In addition, they can also comment on the reports and add images of annotations. Zoho Analytics provides an extensible and scalable platform, which can be customized as the business grows. Furthemore, data alerts are available for when significant changes or anomalies occur. 

User-friendliness

Zoho has an interface similar to a spreadsheet, meaning that users already familiar with spreadsheets will adjust easily and quickly. Most building functions are simply a drag and drop making them easy to use. In addition, Zoho Analytics can be used virtually anywhere as it only requires a browser and an internet connection. 

Price

Zoho offers a 15-day free trial. The platform also offers a Free Plan, which supports 2 users, 5 Workspaces and 10,000 rows in your account.The paid version starts at $25/month. 

 

Wyn Enterprise

Data

This platform allows the combining of data from multiple sources, making business insights more efficient and thorough. Additionally, one can design semantic models and add logical connections to create an organized data portfolio. 

Features

Wyn Enterprise offers a range of customizable ad hoc visualizations. In addition, it allows for the usage of corporate themes and styles, creating truly customized reports and dashboards. To add, Wyn has extensive security features to protect all your data. At the same time, the software is flexible allowing you to set your own boundaries of limiting access information, categorized by company or by department. 

The software also offers personalized access tests, robust authentication solutions, and customized interfaces. Furthermore, Wyn Enterprise acts as a centralized storage, eliminating the need for external databases. 

User-friendliness

The app is a great resource for sharing in a range of document formats between different users. To add, the software also provides a scheduling tool, which will allow you to automate the sharing of reports. 

Price

Wyn Enterprise offers a free trial. The paid version starts at a price established after contacting a vendor, the estimated starting price is not available.

 

Yellowfin

Data

Uniquelly, Yellowin offers an automated assistance feature, which will help you answer any questions thanks to human insight and machine learning. The software will run steps to find the most statistically-relevant result. 

Features

Yellowin is a single integrated platform, which can be deployed on-premise or in the cloud, depending on your preference. The app’s own Storyboard, which is a presentation module, which allows you to share powerful presentations and enhance your data storytelling.

To add, the software offers an enterprise governance feature, which allows the user to deploy curacted analytics through the company. In addition to a storage solution and data visualization options, Yellowin offers a web-based ETL tool. 

User-friendliness

Storytelling is also integrated into the software, giving the user a full-interactive data experience. This is further enhanced by the “Yellowfin Stories” package that puts even more emphasis on the creation of data narratives. 

In addition, Yellowfin is a great collaborative tool. In the app, multiple users can collect, analyze and visualize data, at the same time. Your reports can then be shared with co-workers or stakeholders in an instant. 

Price

Yellowfin offers a free trial. The paid version starts at $50/month. 

In this article, we’ve compiled and compared 8 alternatives to Microsoft’s Power BI. Which one would you choose?