Microsoft Releases Power BI Forecasting Tools
Microsoft's cloud-based business intelligence platform now gives Office 365 customers the ability to peer into the future of their businesses.Microsoft has extended Power BI for Office 365 with a new update that brings forecasting capabilities to the company's cloud-based business intelligence software. First introduced last summer, Power BI is Microsoft's self-service BI offering that enables users to explore and analyze data using Excel, a major pillar of the company's popular Office productivity software suite. Users who lack specialized data analytics skills can now leverage Excel to generate reports, interactive charts and 3D geospatial visualizations. Power BI for Office 365 finally launched on Feb. 10. Julia White, general manager of Microsoft Office product marketing, declared at that time that her company was "bringing BI to a billion users," a reference to Office's massive user base. Big data analytics was "not in the hands of data wonks anymore," she added. Now, Microsoft is providing Office 365 customers with tools that help them shift their focus to their organizations' futures.
Available now, the new Power BI forecasting tools for the Power View component allow users to "predict their data series forward in interactive charts and reports," announced Microsoft in a statement. "With these new Power BI capabilities, users can explore the forecasted results, adjust for seasonality and outliers, view result ranges at different confidence levels, and hindcast to view how the model would have predicted recent results."