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Author's profile photo Tammy Powlas

Self-Service BI Tools: Round Up and Deep Dive Webcast Recap

Source: Visual BI

This was a webcast given by Visual BI last week.  Comparing self service BI tools  – how does SAP Lumira and SAP Analytics Cloud compare to Tableau & PowerBI?  I am sure the replay will be available soon at their site.

This is Visual BI’s point of view and it does not represent any software vendor

Figure 2: Source: Visual BI

These are 4 separate tools – 2 from SAP, and other leading vendors

Figure 3: Source: Visual BI


An environment where business end users can answer their query without IT intervention

5 steps

  1. Acquire data
  2. Data preparation
  3. Visualization – strictly about visualization features
  4. Exploration
  5. How share and collaborate


Figure 4: Source: Visual BI


Who needs self service BI?

Data Analysts do a lot of data preparation –

Power users – are both data analyst and report analyst

Data scientists do more advanced BI

Figure 5: Source: Visual BI


Figure 5 covers a glossary of terms


Magic quadrant is shown in Figure 6, with 2 leading contenders, compared to SAP

Gartner redefined tools for self service

Figure 7: Source: Visual BI/Gartner


SAP Lumira 2.0 will be GA later this month; this is SAP’s on premise self-service tool.  It has tight integration with SAP platform

SAP Analytics Cloud – recent offering, cloud based solution, also includes predictive and planning in platform; it includes Digital Boardroom

Tableau is the data discovery leader – 10.3 used to compare

PowerBI – made leaps and bounds in last 12 months and is leading in Gartner quadrant; it has best connectivity in Microsoft stack

Figure 8: Source: Visual BI

Analytics Cloud is available online only

Tableau has both desktop and web, same for PowerBI

Operating systems – Tableau – Windows & Mac

SAP Lumira and PowerBI do not have a Mac version

Figure 9: Source: Visual BI


Web based authoring; some customers want to do all cloud

PowerBI & Tableau – if use online, there are feature parity differences with their desktop

Figure 10: Source: Visual BI

USP – unique selling point, I think

SAP Analytics Cloud has cloud based data sources, value driven tree

Tableau – best user interface and UX with diverse native connectors and has a rollback option

PowerBI – export to PPT, social media connectors

Data Acquisition

Figure 11: Source: Visual BI


PowerBI connects well to Microsoft technology

SAP Analytics Cloud connects best if data is in SAP Cloud Platform


All tools provide direct access to HANA

Figure 12/13: Source: Visual BI

SAP Connectivity with the tools is covered in Figure 13.


Data Preparation

Figure 14: Source: Visual BI


Merge, append, hierarchies


Subtle differences on tools capabilities


Data Visualization

Figure 15: Source: Visual BI


SAP Analytics Cloud and Tableau do not have an SDK

Figure 16: Source: Visual BI

Figure 17: Source: Visual BI


Hard to differentiate amongst tools

Figure 18: Source: Visual BI


Data Exploration

Figure 19: Source: Visual BI

Data Collaboration

Several differences on how each of tools operates are shown in Figure 19

Figure 20: Source: Visual BI


PowerBI is strong thanks to Microsoft Office integration

Figure 21: Source: Visual BI


Mobile, export option

Subtle differences amongst tools

Figure 22: Source: Visual BI

SSO challenges – get creative to overcome

Pricing and Licensing

Figure 23: Source: Visual BI


Personal edition can only Excel & Google as data sources

Professional – publish

Figure 24: Source: Visual BI


PowerBI – made strides in pricing

Additional features – pro users

Collaborate – premium with Gateway, pay extra

Figure 25: Source: Visual BI


SAP’s broad portfolio is shown in Figure 25

Lumira Desktop  – to publish need BI platform

Many customers already have BI platform and not have additional server costs

Figure 26: Source: Visual BI


Lumira Discovery – you may already own; ask your SAP AE

SAP Analytics Cloud is a new offering with competitive pricing

Want to compare pricing at a large volume of users


SAP Integration – BW, HANA, Universe

Figure 27: Source: Visual BI


Tableau-can’t reuse Universe investments

Figure 28: Source: Visual BI

No notes on this slide, but this question arises in the Lumira tags here, so I am leaving it.

Figure 29: Source: Visual BI


For SAP Lumira, you need to do data prep in backend

Figure 30: Source: Visual BI


Tableau has matured their HANA connectivity

Figure 31: Source: Visual BI


SAP BW uses BICS – Tableau/PowerBI compared to an SAP tool

Figure 32: Source: Visual BI


Figure 33: Source: Visual BI



Figure 34: Source: Visual BI


For BW customers, better off with Lumira Discovery


Figure 35: Source: Visual BI


Use tools to its strengths

HANA, BW, investments – use Lumira Discovery

PB – office integration, SDK (something T cannot)

Figure 36: Source: Visual BI


For Lumira 2.x, have to wait to see since it is not GA yet

Figure 37: Source: Visual BI

Figure 38 Source: Visual BI

Figure 39: Source: Visual BI

According to BARC, SAP is a market leader in the BI platform; BARC is popular



Q: What about Spotfire?

A: didn’t include it for this webinar

Q: PowerBI to BW seems to be slow

A: something to watch for; play to the strengths

Q: Surprising to see Lumira can’t connect to HANA tables

A: Data governance philosophy; can use FHSQL

Additional Information

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