Power BI gets robust mapping with ArcGIS

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Microsoft Power BI is slated to get some serious mapping capabilities, as Microsoft yesterday announced ArcGIS for Power BI by Esri is on the way — “most likely this calendar year hopefully a lot sooner than that,” Esri product manager Scott Ball said this morning. In fact, he added, it might be as early as within a week.

Users can create maps within Power BI now, but the existing functionality is rudimentary. Esri will be adding some, but certainly not all, of its enterprise ArcGIS capabilities to Microsoft’s platform.

For example, Power BI users will be able to choose among four base maps, multiple themes and Esri’s demographic reference layers that have data such as household income, median disposable income and median home value. However, Power BI users will not be able to pull demographic data out of those layers for use elsewhere in Power BI, and they can use only one of those layers at a time.

Ball said other ArcGIS capabilities in Power BI will include:

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