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JayBabcock
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PowerBI Licensing Solutions

What are the drawbacks of a few select users with PPU licenses, everyone else with free licenses, as opposed to giving everyone Pro licenses?

 

I want the most cost-effective method of creating and sharing PowerBI reports for my company's internals.  We utilize a third-party to connect to our ERP, another pulls data from our machinery, and a CMMS, all with pre-made robust dashboards that exceed our needs - no advantage of MS PowerBI for them.  On the other hand, internal metrics, such as our QMS,  internal training processes, etc. we store in-house, with SharePoint and home-grown databases, adequate for our needs that I want to keep connected to MS PowerBI.

I created reports, dashboards, scorecards, etc. with my Pro license not realizing every viewer would also need a Pro license.  Historically, we deployed Pro licenses to all who needed to view reports.  However, with growth, we want more and more users to have visibility, so we would need to purchase licenses at $10/user/month.  99% of users will never need nor want to develop a report (80% will probably never view a report on their own).  I cannot justify spending on under-utilized licenses.

To my understanding Free Fabric licenses can only view reports hosted in a Premium capacity after the 60-day trial.  We are not large enough for the $4,995/month expenditure for a Premium license.  The PowerBI Premium Per User license (PPU), on the other hand, allows publishing reports in a premium capacity and therefore viewing with free licenses.

Here is my thinking, if we have 50 employees who need/want access to reports, but only 2 of us will make reports, we could have 48 as viewers, so couldn't we save a lot of money by changing our licensing scheme?:

 

Current Scenario = 50 Pro licenses at $10/user/month = $500/month, or $6,000/year

Proposed Scenario  = 2 PPU licenses at $20/month (and 48 free licenses) = $40/month, or $480/year

This would save $5,120/year if we still have the capability to do what we need.  Yes, our viewers would lose the ability to create their own reports, and to share them, but realistically they do not do these things anyway, and I am not sure I want them to.

 

Does anyone see issues with this licensing scheme?  We can add on new report writers, as needed, at only $20/month more, rather than $10/month more for every one who might want to view a report.

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