April Power BI Updates are Here!

By Julie Smith

April 28, 2016


Today, Microsoft announced the April Power BI Desktop updates and they include something I and my colleagues at Innovative Architects have been long awaiting: formatting for table reports!


While it was understandable that initially Power BI wanted to focus on visualizations first and foremost, the display for pure tabular data in Power BI was lackluster. There was no control over any of the following:

  1. Font size
  2. Colors –of any element in a table, font, background color, title, totals. Nada
  3. Borders

See the below, created in Power BI desktop. A sad little table showing sales figures for the year 1998 in Northwind.

When you clicked on the fountain pen icon where you would assume you could jazz it up, there was not anything there which could help you do so:


Sad trombone.


But as of today, there are many more options–

I can change the text size to 21:

I can change the header font color and background color and add borders:

I can commit formatting atrocities with the value rows:

And lastly, I can change the appearance of the total row:

**not because you SHOULD, this is just a demo 🙂

Resulting in a chart that is, if nothing else, colorful:

I hope this cheers your day. Now you know that you have more formatting options for tabular (or paginated style) reports in Power BI. You also now know the reason I’m usually only allowed to move the data, not try and make it pretty 🙂


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