Metabase vs. Power BI
Which is right for my team?

Metabase is the easy-to-use business intelligence tool with the friendly UX that lets everyone in your team to work with data.

Trusted by over 60,000 companies

What's the difference between Metabase and Power BI

Power BI has a steeper learning curve than Metabase. People (even non-technical or data-savvy folks) actually like using Metabase, because it’s easier to learn, meaning they’re more likely to run reports and get data on their own.

What makes Metabase a good choice compared to Power BI?

  • Easy to use for everyone. With intuitive tools like interactive dashboards with quick drill-through analyses, the query builder to write questions without SQL, and one-click-to-create charts.
  • Open source and affordable. Transparent pricing for startups through to advanced functionality and support for Enterprise. Secure and scalable, with no limits on the size of your dataset.
  • Super fast to set up, with simple integration to your preferred data tools and OS (e.g., not just Windows and the MS universe) Work with your favorite tools, from data sources, transformation, ETL, modeling, whether you’re on Windows, Mac, or Linux.
  • Interactive, customer-facing analytics in days, no sprints. Customizable embedded analytics that lets your customers explore their data with as much - or as little - flexibility as you want.
  • Look and feel. Customers tell us they prefer the look of charts and dashboards in Metabase over Power BI. Their teams find them easier to understand, and they dig the general vibe.
  • Help from our world class Success team. Technical experts who help with everything from troubleshooting to advice on best practices. Customers love them.
  • Private and secure. We never look at or copy your data. And we prioritize privacy and security features to secure data access in your org, like SSO and fine-grained permissions.

When might Power BI be a better fit than Metabase?*

  • You’re an enterprise-level company working with large, complex data sets, with a dedicated team to run your BI program and ad hoc reports for the team.
  • You only want some people querying your data.
  • You’re not on a budget.
  • You need all-in-one advanced data integration for data transformation and dataflows for ETL processes.
  • You’ve got time to learn how to use Power BI
  • You’re a loyal subject to the Microsoft realm (Mac and Linux fans need not apply).

*For the record...Metabase also supports a number of happy enterprise-level customers for all their BI needs - some even use Metabase alongside Power BI to let their less data-savvy teammates self-serve analytics and run their own reports.
(We’re trying to present a somewhat balanced view here, but c’mon, it’s still our website 😏)

Frequently asked questions

When is Metabase a better choice than Power BI?

Metabase is best suited for businesses that need a straightforward way for everyone in the team to self-serve analytics. Metabase is the business intelligence platform that your team will actually enjoy using, at the right price for your scale.

When is Power BI a better choice than Metabase?

Credit where it’s due - Power BI can be a good fit for larger enterprises or orgs with more extensive data analysis needs, deep pockets, and a lower need for everyone in the org to be able to jump in and run their own reports. It’s got all the bells and whistles - and depending on the maturity of your org, your use case and needs, it may be more than you need.

Who uses Metabase over Power BI?

Metabase is trusted by over 60,000 companies with their analytics, from startups who need their first business intelligence tool through to Enterprises. Metabase open source is the go-to choice for founders and solo-developers to let their teams get answers from data on their own so they’re not running the same reports once a month. Metabase Pro and Enterprise is generally chosen by CTOs, CPOs, Heads of Data who have been there, done that with every other BI tool on the market and need a way to make self-service analytics actually happen.

What use cases do Metabase and Power BI cover?

Metabase and Power BI both cater to internal analytics, as well as interactive embedded analytics for customers.

Metabase is ideal for quick, intuitive data exploration that lets people in your company click around in interactive dashboard and visualizations to learn from data, or create queries with or without SQL.

Power BI may be better suited for complex data analysis and putting detailed visualizations in front of customers.

What’s the differences in pricing between Metabase and Power BI?

Metabase is open source with affordable plans available for additional security and governance features, cloud deployment, and fast, unlimited technical help from engineers.

Power BI's pricing is generally higher with user-based licensing with various pricing tiers depending on the use case.

Do you need to know SQL to use Metabase or Power BI?

Metabase and Power BI both let data analysts work in SQL; and less technically savvy people ask questions without SQL.

Metabase's intuitive Query Builder lets non-technical or data savvy people put together analyses with clicks - no SQL necessary. Analysts and data people who prefer to write SQL can fill their boots in the SQL editor.

How do Metabase and Power BI compare in terms of visualization capabilities?

Metabase and Power BI give people a way to visualize their data and make sense of the numbers. But Metabase is so much more than just a visualization tool. For people who feel like they’re seeing double when staring at columns, it’s an intuitive way to filter and summarize to uncover trends and get insights to make data-driven decisions.

Ok, give it to me straight though - what’s the best Business Intelligence tool?

There’s no right or wrong answers here. It will generally depend on your use case, how much you want people to be able to learn from data and run reports on their own without depending on your data team; your preferred data stack, how fast you need to get up and running, your budget, and more.

Again, there’s no “right” answer, but just sayin’ - Metabase will let everyone on your team work with data, integrates with your preferred data tools, gets up and running in 5 minutes flat, and suits all budgets (and you can try it for free).

Have more questions? We’d be happy to help.
Talk to a person

“It's the first time in my years working in data that I saw non-technical business users create their own dashboards and analytics in our BI platform, all made possible because of Metabase’s user friendly and intuitive data exploration and dashboarding capabilities.”

Photo of Dobo Radichkov

Dobo Radichkov

Chief Data Officer, Holland & Barrett