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Removal of Power View from Excel in Microsoft 365 and Excel 2021

As previously announced, new feature development for Power View concluded in 2016 and shifted to Power BI Desktop, a free standalone download. Power BI Desktop offers a dedicated environment for visual data exploration and reporting, complementing the deep analytics users perform in Excel. 

While Power View remained in Excel for Windows, the Silverlight framework it requires is reaching end of support on October 12th, 2021.  As a result, we will remove Power View from Excel starting on October 12th, 2021. Note that as a Microsoft 365 update this will roll out gradually. For more information, see When do I get the newest features. In addition, Power View will not be included in the Excel 2021 perpetual release.

You can migrate your existing Power View solutions to Power BI Desktop. To do this, within Power BI Desktop, select File > Import >Power Query, Power Pivot, Power View, choose an Excel workbook from the dialog box, and then import the Power View components of your workbook into Power BI Desktop. For more information, see Import Excel workbooks into Power BI Desktop.

Note that other related features (i.e., Power Query, Power Pivot, 3D Maps) are not affected by this change and will continue to be supported. In addition, we will continue to invest and innovate in the charting space which provides powerful visualization directly in Excel. 

After this change, Excel will no longer render sheets containing Power View reports. Workbooks containing the reports will still open on Excel for Windows and other parts of the workbook will be accessible, including the underlying data in the Data Model Power View was using.  

How to Create New Reports

Many reporting needs can be fulfilled using Excel’s native charting experience. If you are looking for more options and interactivity, it is recommended that you use Excel + Power BI Desktop. These tools are deliberately designed to work together. Resources for leveraging the combined power of these tools are available here.  

Office has a long track record of offering compelling ways to display data visually. Office 2013 introduced Power View, an interactive reporting capability built into Excel. Since introducing Power View, customers have told us that while they value its interactivity for visual data exploration, they also value the familiarity, look and feel, customization, fidelity, and the programmability of the native charting experience in Excel. In addition, customers preferred a dedicated tool for such visual data exploration. This feedback led us to develop Power BI Desktop, which provides a dedicated environment for visual data exploration and reporting, complementing the deep analytics users perform in Excel. The Power BI Desktop tool, available as a free download, has received rave reviews since its release.

What's next for Power View in Excel

As mentioned in the What's new for business analytics in Excel 2016 blog in 2015, Power BI Desktop is built on the same free-form reporting experience as Power View, and offers a dedicated environment for visual data exploration and report authoring. Power BI Desktop has added support for several new and custom visualizations, and is delivering improvements rapidly through monthly updates. With Power BI Desktop, customers can also import Power View content from Excel workbooks and reuse their investments.

To deliver a compelling experience for visual data exploration in a focused tool, we are shifting all investment to Power BI Desktop for this workload, and have concluded new feature development for Power View. Power BI Desktop is now the recommended tool for visual data exploration and reporting, and Excel continues to be the broad tool for deep analytics. The Power BI Service allows for simple publishing of dashboards for both Power BI reports and Excel workbooks, and also enables users to analyze Power BI data in Excel. Each of these tools is optimized for the different needs of business analysts, and together, the suite is deliberately designed to work together.

The Power View sheets that customers have created with Excel will continue to be supported by Excel desktop, SharePoint with SQL Server BI add-on, and SharePoint Online through the current Silverlight-based implementation. This support includes fixes for security issues and major functional regressions without simple workarounds. Browsers that support Silverlight are listed here.

Given this approach, Excel 2016 removed the default functionality that allowed customers to add Power View sheets from the ribbon. For those customers that elect to continue using Power View, steps are available to enable adding new Power View sheets.

In the summer of 2016, Excel 2013 was updated to align with Excel 2016 by removing the default ribbon functionality to add Power View sheets to Excel workbooks. In addition, the Import Data dialog in both Excel 2013 and 2016 removed an option to create Power View report when users import data into the Data Model. Inserting a new Power View sheet will connect it to data in the Data Model as it does today.

Based on user feedback, we believe this approach strikes a good balance between supporting existing functionality and content, and encouraging users to get the best experience in Power BI Desktop, a dedicated tool for visual data exploration and interactive reporting.

In addition, Excel will continue to innovate on the native charting experience. Excel 2016 introduced new chart types including waterfall, box and whisker, histogram, treemap, and Microsoft 365 customers now have access to funnel as well. We look forward to delivering more charts and interactivity that allow customers to analyze and communicate with impact.

Need more help?

You can always ask an expert in the Excel Tech Community or get support in Communities.

See More

Power BI Desktop support for importing Power View

Data Visualization with Excel and Power BI

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