Power View: Using the Play Axis

One of the most talked about features of Power View that I always hear client’s rave about is the play axis. For those that aren’t familiar with it, the play axis in a Power View report allows you to make a scatter chart about some key metrics (number of sales, dollar amount, etc.) and show it’s progression over time across 3 or 4 different axes. For this blog post, let’s walk through the different features of the chart, and how we can configure them. I will be using Excel 2013 Professional for this demo, but if you’re developing a Power View report in a SharePoint environment it would be identical.

 

To start, open up an Excel workbook with your Office 2013 Data Model. I’m going to be using the Adventure Works 2012 tabular database for this demo. My initial Power View worksheet looks like this:

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Next I’m going to create a very quick table showing the amount of my internet sales, the number of units sold, along with the date that they sold and the sales territory region. My resulting table looks like this:

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You can see from the picture, not very much exciting about it in its current format. Let’s change that. Up at the top of the page, under “Other charts”, select the scatter option to turn it into a scatter chart.

 

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Once you have a scatter chart up, your initial picture should look something like this:

 

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Down on the bottom right hand corner, you will see a list of all of the different fields that are available to you:

 

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This is what we can use to configure the chart. Below is a breakdown of each type:

 

X Value: The horizontal value across the bottom of the report to generate the size of the x axis.

Y value: The vertical value across the top of the report to generate the size of the y axis.

Size: The size of each detail circle.

Details: Each category or attribute that you would want to see data reported on.

Color: You can use this field to identify what color you want to use. For example, you can use Product Sub Category as the details attribute and the Product Category as the color.

Play Axis: This is the date field that is used to configure and move the report accordingly.

 

For this report, my configuration area looks like the below:

 

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Once my configuration looks like the above, my resulting Power View report will look like the below. Click the play axis, and WHAMMY! One awesome report that will get the whole company talking about some data!

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