Thanks to all of you who were able to attend my webinar today titled Power BI Embedding Version 2 – The Full Story. I am starting to get the idea that people in Norway are head-over-heels-crazy for Power BI. I say this because our good friend, Hans Kristiansen of Capgemini, was able to gather 79 Norwegians members of his local Power BI user group into a single room to participate my webinar today.
For those of you who are interested in the content but were unable to attend, I have posted to webinar recording in the Webinars and Video Gallery of the Power BI community site at this link.
During the webinar, a few attendees asked some great questions. I thought I would share these questions and my answers for the benefit of all.
Question 1: I am an internal developer, in a smaller company. Is it possible to embed via the Power BI Pro or are we lost now. Are the embedded features only in enterprise version?
Answer: In the webinar, I explain the differences between 1st party embedding and 3rd party embedding. To summarize, 1st party embedding is used when the current user has an Azure AD account which has been assigned a Power BI license. Therefore, you can always use 1st party embedding without any requirement to purchase any type of Power BI Premium capacity.
If you have a scenario in which you need to reach users which have neither Azure AD user accounts not Power BI licenses, that's when you need to use 3rd party embedding which requires a Power BI Premium capacity node. Some people have voiced their unhappiness that you cannot just pay Microsoft $10/month for a single Pro license and then reach 5,000 unlicensed users with Power BI embedding. The Microsoft corporation has many goals and aspiration, but becoming a non-profit organization is not one of them.
The way you pay Microsoft for the ability to reach non-licensed users is to purchase a Premium Capacity node. The entry point into Power BI Premium is not as expensive as some people think. You can get in the game of 3rd party embedding with Power BI by purchasing an EM1 premium capacity node which starts at $625/month.
Question 2: We are currently using Power BI embedded for our customer facing solutions. We also use Power BI internally in our company. We are currently using shared services for both. If we go for premium - can we still use shared resources internally and use the premium for our customer facing solutions (embedded)?
Answer: Yes, you can absolutely mix and match when it comes to deciding which app workspaces run in premium capacities versus which app workspaces run in the standard shared capacity. A user who has been granted the proper permissions using the browser can move an app workspace into or out of a premium capacity node. You can also whitelist specific Power BI Pro users so the app workspaces they create are automatically added to a premium capacity.
Question 3: I have an application hosted on Azure, this application has different clients. I want to develop a Power BI Report and share it with these clients, embedding reports on pages in my application. Is it possible with a Power BI Embedded License? - I just want to share the result report embedded in my web app.
Answer: Since you have already developed this custom web app and deployed it to Azure, I assume you have already implemented the aspect of the application that performs user authentication. That means you must use 3rd party embedding which will require you to purchase a Power BI Premium capacity node.
Question 4: I am confused about the differences between the different types of Premium capacity node types that are available for purchase. Can you explain the differences between the P* node types (e.g. P1, P2, P3) and the EM* node types (e.g. EM1, EM2 and EM3)?
Answer: The Power BI team initially released the P* node types. The P* nodes are more expensive as they start at $5000/month for a P1 node. The P* node types make sense for larger organizations which assign Power BI licenses to their users and which have a large number of report/dashboard readers compared to the number of report/dashboard authors. For example, imagine a company with 25 report authors and 10,000 report readers. If you do not purchase a P* node, then all users require a Pro license whether they are authors or just consumers. However, running a P* node allows you to serve up content and share it with users that have the Power BI fee license. Here's the math that demonstrates the saving in this scenario:
Without Power BI Premium: $100,250/month (10,025 users * $10/month)
With Power BI Premium P1 Node: $5,250/month (25 users *10/month) + 1 node at $5000/month
Note that when using a P* node such as P1, P2 or P3, the hosting organization has no requirement for custom software development. An author with a Power BI Pro license can build out a custom solution in an app workspace using Power BI Desktop and the browser. As long as that app workspace is running inside a P* capacity node, the author can then publish the app workspace as a Power BI app which can then be installed and consumed by users who have the free license. All that I just described can be accomplished using the browser-based user interface experience provided by the Power BI service. It's also possible for users with the free Power BI license to install and consume apps using the Power BI mobile support on iPhone and Androids.
So that brings us to the EM* node types such as EM1, EM2 and EM3. The first thing you will notice about these is that they are much cheaper than P* nodes. Purchasing an EM1 node is $625/month compared to purchasing an P1 node which is $5000/month.
So what is the difference? The EM* nodes are for ISVs that only require 3rd party embedding in a custom application. Unlike the P* nodes, the EM* nodes do not provide the ability for licensed users to access the browser-based experience of the Power BI service or to access the Power BI mobile applications.
In general, P* node types are mainly used by large organizations that have a significant number of readers and that do not want to develop their own custom applications. Instead, they want to rely on the user interface experiences that the Power BI team has already created in the browser and with the Power BI mobile applications. The EM* node types are mainly used by ISVs that are building their own custom applications and that do not relying on any user interface experiences created by the Power BI team.
Answer: I read all of Adam Saxton's articles, I drink plenty of red bull and I often stay up late to write code against the newest preview features in Power BI after the wife, the dog and the kids have gone to sleep.