Power BI Desktop: Interaction between Visuals

November release of Power BI Desktop delivered a highly requested feature – ability to configure interaction between visual elements in a report. Here is a quick tutorial of the configuration options.

I have a report with 4 visual elements, a card, a clustered column chart, a bar chart and a donut chart. By default, when I select manufacturer Pirum in the bar chart, card visual is cross filtered to show sales for Pirum. Column and donut chart are cross highlighted to highlight sales for Pirum.

Now let’s say we want to change the behavior as follows:

  • Card element always displays total sales for the entire dataset. It should not interact based on the selection in the bar chart.
  • Column chart should cross highlight based on selection on the bar chart (default behavior).
  • Donut chart should filter to display sales for the manufacturer selected in the bar chart.

To achieve this functionality, highlight the bar chart and from the ribbon select Home -> Edit. Notice icons are displayed on the top right corner of each of the other 3 charts.

Now select None option for the card element. This will remove visual interaction between the bar chart and card visual.

Select Highlight option for the column chart to have cross highlight visual interaction between bar chart and column chart.

Select filter option for the donut chart to filter the donut chart based on the bar chart selection.

Select manufacturer Pirum on the bar chart, interaction between the chart elements has changed. Amount in card visual remains the same, column chart is highlighted and donut chart is filtered.

When Urban section is selected on the donut chart, the other 3 charts visuals fall back to the default behavior of cross filtering and cross highlighting. Each visual element can be configured based on the needs giving a lot of control to the user.

Following link summarizes all the new features available with November release.


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