Create IPhone BI using RoamBI and data from PowerPivot

Ok this really get me excited, nerd excitement all over the place! While reading the excellent blog post from Timo Elliott from SAP where he combined RoamBI with SAP and the IPad. I decided I had to create my own dashboard on my Iphone using PowerPivot and RoamBI (maybe they will send me an Ipad after this post as well 🙂 ). Because how great would it be .. get great visualizations on your Iphone or Ipad using the mega engine of PowerPivot. It turned out to be very easy 🙂 For those of you who haven’t seen RoamBI you can create these kinds of reports to use at your Iphone (and recently the Ipad as well):

First step is to create an account at RoamBI, RoamBI is free for personal use, this will give you the possibility to upload excel file to create dashboards with…and when we can upload excel we can ofcourse also use PowerPivot data! There are also corporate licenses which will give you much more power to work with real time data that will come form SSRS or Excel, unfortunately not a lot of information about this is available on their site, I would like to try it out some time.

Ok account created, lets get to work, first select the dashboard you want to create at the site, we can select 4 different dashboards:

I want to create the catalist dashboard, next steps is to import our data, we can upload a excel sheet here:

So now we have to create our excel sheet we want to import, so lets open up excel 2010 and PowerPivot, i have created a flattened pivottable showing the salesamount per country for each month:

To import this into RoamBi we need to loose all the PowerPivot additions to our regular excel file. We do this by saving the powerpivot file to xls, this leaves only the values in our workbook.

We now can upload the file to RoamBI:

We now have to map the data so RoamBI understands it, we select rows,columns regions and data:

We now have data in our application, showing values per country per month, we have 12 pages, each month has his own page.

We could publish our app now, but i want to refine my dashboard some more, with the refinement we can finetune how we would like to show our data. We can select what kind of charts we would like to show our data in , for example as straight up data:

Or column chart showing each month in a bar:

I selected the area chart, at next step we can creating micro charts, with micro charts we can create a chart for multiple columns in each row, like a chart showing all months in a year, we can also select we want to show growth options and how, showing values or a trend:

Now we are finished and we have create a simple chart:

When we publish it it becomes available at my iphone at my RoamBI application as a new report:

Then i can select it and the numbers will be shown at my phone:

Excellent stuff ! and very easy to implement. I’ll be doing more with RoamBI in the future. ow yeah and of course you can get this information also from a regular SSAS pivottable or import from SSRS.

  • Rob Verkuylen

    Very nice!

    Btw: You can iPhone screenshot by holding the top button and pressing home. Screen will flash and the screeny will show up in your picture folder. Screenshot or it didn’t happen! 😉

  • Kasper de Jonge

    @Rob Verkuylen
    yeah i know but then it doesn’t look like its for real imho 🙂 but thanx for mentioning it!

  • Joost

    Very cool! Would love to see it on an ipad 🙂

  • Matej Kralj

    Nice. But I assume there is not a possibility to periodically refresh the data somehow or is there?

    • Kasper de Jonge

      Hi Matej,

      I believe there is a possibility with a paid account, although i am unable to test it myself. not with PowerPivot but with reporting services mind you. When Excel 2010 will be supported i think it will be possible to do it automatic.

      Kasper