When searching for data visualization and analytics tools, Microsoft Power BI is one of the first options people consider. There are plenty of other solutions offering similar features, though, such as Qlik Sense.
If you’re struggling to choose a data analytics tool, this guide can help. Below, you’ll learn some essential pros and cons of Power BI vs. Qlik Sense, so you can make an informed decision.
What Is Microsoft Power BI?
Microsoft Power BI is an end-to-end business intelligence platform.
This tool offers a streamlined solution designed to help users “do more with less.” It allows them to create single sources of truth, visualize data more clearly, conduct in-depth analyses, and use information from those analyses to make meaningful decisions.
Microsoft Power BI Key Features
Microsoft Power BI stands out from other business intelligence tools based on the following features:
Power BI has its own built-in AI tool, Copilot. Users can rely on Copilot to describe specific insights, answer questions, assist with data analysis, and transfer data directly to reports.
Microsoft Power BI Centralized Data
With Power BI, users can easily create datasets from a variety of sources, then add them to the centralized data hub for easy access. This central hub ensures everything is stored in one place and all team members stay on the same page.
Engaging Visuals with Microsoft Power BI
Many users like Power BI’s capabilities when it comes to creating engaging visuals. They use it to convert raw data into unique visuals with the help of Copilot and an easy-to-use drag-and-drop report-building tool.
Easy Information Sharing
Power BI works well with a variety of other apps, including those in the Microsoft 365 family, helping users to easily share insights with team members while also protecting essential data.
What Is Qlik Sense?
Qlik Sense touts itself as a modern cloud analytics platform, offering AI-assisted insights and predictions to empower users to take intelligent action.
It’s designed to help users understand and use data efficiently and effectively while reducing the effects of cognitive biases, increasing discoveries, and enhancing data literacy.
Qlik Sense Key Features
Qlik Sense offers numerous data visualization and analytics features, including these:
Like Power BI, Qlik Sense offers its own AI-powered tool. With AI’s help, users can understand and use data more effectively, generate analyses and insights, automate the creation and data prep processes, and more.
Visualizations and Dashboards
Users also applaud Qlik Sense’s detailed dashboards and robust data visualizations. These dashboards and visuals allow users to review data easily and efficiently to make more informed decisions.
Qlik Sense’s team argues that passive BI falls short when presenting dynamic information that reflects the current moment. They also say that Qlik Sense solves that problem by combining real-time data with action-oriented analytics to deliver in-the-moment insights and encourage action.
Qlik Sense is available as a convenient hybrid cloud platform. It provides users with complete control of data and analytics and allows them to choose from any combination of public and private cloud, as well as on-premises options.
Microsoft Power BI Pros
People use Microsoft Power BI for their business intelligence needs for numerous reasons. The following are some of the most significant benefits it offers:
Affordable Price (maybe)
Power BI is a relatively affordable business intelligence tool. Power BI Pro costs $10 per user per month, while Power BI Premium costs $20 per user per month or $4,995 per capacity per month.
Easy-to-Use with Microsoft Power BI
If you’re familiar with other Microsoft tools, you’ll likely find it very easy to start using Power BI. It features the same basic framework as other Microsoft platforms, so you and your team will be able to hit the ground running in no time.
Microsoft Power BI is regularly updated based on community suggestions for new features, capabilities, etc. These updates allow for a better user experience and ensure you get the most out of what you’re paying for.
Multiple Data Source Connection Options
Power BI connects to hundreds of data sources. The following are just some of the sources it can read:
- Microsoft Excel data
- Text files, including XML and JSON
- Azure sources
- Google Analytics
It can also connect to SQL servers and various other databases.
Microsoft Power BI Integrates with Excel
In addition to reading data from Microsoft Excel, Power BI also integrates with the platform very easily. If you prefer to use Excel for your analysis, you don’t have to pick one lane exclusively. You can instead save data from Power BI to Excel and enjoy the best of both worlds.
Microsoft Power BI Customization Options
Power BI includes numerous tools to improve data visualization efforts. It offers a variety of graphs and charts, as well as options for transforming data with the help of geographic maps. It also features unique visualization for KPIs, R scripts, and more.
Microsoft Power BI Cons
Despite its many benefits, Power BI also comes with a few drawbacks that potential users should keep in mind, including these:
Crowded User Interface
Some users have complained that the Power BI interface is crowded or bulky, which can interfere with visibility.
Microsoft Power BI Strict Formulas
Power BI allows users to create new data with formulas. However, it places strict limits on the formulas you can utilize, which some find frustrating.
Limited Data Capacity
Power BI Pro limits the amount of data it can manage, so you may have to upgrade to a more expensive version if you regularly work with large data sets.
Limited Visualization Configurations
The Power BI platform also places some limits on how visuals can be configured, which can be frustrating for those who spend a lot of time customizing a particular chart, graph, etc.
Qlik Sense Pros
Like Microsoft Power BI (and any other data analytics tool), Qlik Sense comes with numerous benefits that make it a popular choice. Here are some of the top ones to consider:
Supports Multiple Mobile Platforms
Each Qlik Sense user can be logged on to the Qlik Sense Mobile SaaS platform on five concurrent mobile devices. This support allows users to access data from various locations.
Runs on Its Own Platform
Qlik Sense runs on its own platform with the help of in-memory technology. As a result, it’s less dependent on support from IT professionals for maintenance and management, reducing costs for users.
Convenient Collaboration Options
Qlik Sense allows users to pool data from various sources to create visuals. It also lets users interact with charts and visualizations and share them with team members and clients for better collaboration and decision-making.
When they rely on Qlik Sense, users don’t need to worry about knowing code. The interface is simple and intuitive, allowing users to start using it at its full capacity sooner.
Qlik Sense is highly customizable because it uses a collection of standard and open APIs. This combination simplifies the creation of visualizations, apps, and more.
Easy to Scale
Qlik Sense’s customization features also expand its overall reach and scope. It’s a highly scalable tool that works well for teams of various types and sizes.
Qlik Sense Cons
Qlik Sense also has some downsides that may interfere with your experience, including the following:
Higher Price and Fewer Pricing Options
Qlik Sense costs $30 per user per month (pricing for the enterprise version is available upon request).
Limited Data Capacity
Like Power BI, Qlik Sense’s data capacity is somewhat limited, meaning you may run into trouble when working with larger data sets.
Limited Formulas and Functions
Some of the formulas used in Microsoft Excel don’t transfer to Qlik Sense and vice versa, which can be frustrating for some users.
Requires Additional Extensions
Some users have complained that they have to pay for and download a variety of extensions to make Qlik Sense work for them.
Bottom Line: Power BI vs. Qlik Sense
Microsoft Power BI and Qlik Sense each come with their own pros and cons.
For example, while Power BI is more affordable and offers more flexible pricing, some users prefer the interactivity and collaboration features of Qlik Sense.
Users may also appreciate Qlik Sense’s easy scalability and support for multiple mobile platforms but be frustrated by its limitations regarding missing formulas and functions in Excel (which integrates very well with Power BI since they’re both Microsoft products).
Use the information discussed above to evaluate both Power BI and Qlik Sense to decide which option makes more sense for you and your team’s needs and goals.
Choosing the Right Data Analytics Tool: DashboardFox Takes the Lead
After comparing Microsoft Power BI and Qlik Sense, it's clear that both tools have their strengths and weaknesses. However, when you're seeking the ultimate data analytics solution, that is affordable and powerful, there is one platform that rises above the competition: DashboardFox.
While Power BI offers affordability and extensive data source connectivity, and Qlik Sense impresses with its detailed visualizations and active analytics, DashboardFox combines the best of both worlds and takes it a step further.
With DashboardFox, you'll experience a seamless transition, cost-effectiveness, lightning-fast performance, comprehensive features, and exceptional support. This advanced business intelligence platform provides you with the power to make data-driven decisions and unlock the door to success.
DashboardFox not only offers a user-friendly interface but also a competitive pricing structure and scalability to meet your evolving business needs. The platform's exceptional customer support ensures you receive assistance whenever required, making your analytics experience smooth and hassle-free.
In addition to its impressive features and exceptional support, DashboardFox stands out by offering a unique advantage: a one-time payment scheme.
Unlike many other data analytics tools that require ongoing subscription fees, DashboardFox allows you to make a single payment, providing long-term access to its comprehensive functionality.
This upfront investment not only offers cost savings but also provides peace of mind, knowing that you have a fully licensed solution at your disposal without the need for recurring payments.
Don't miss out on the opportunity to explore the extensive features of DashboardFox. Take the next step towards revolutionizing your data analytics journey by signing up for a free live demo session or scheduling a meeting with our expert team.
Discover firsthand how DashboardFox can empower your data-driven decision-making process and propel your business to new heights.
Unlock success with DashboardFox today!