Interact with Visualizations in reports, dashboards, and apps

At its most basic, a visualization (or visual), is a type of chart built by Power BI designers using the data in reports and datasets.


We recommend first reading the overview topic Power BI basic concepts for consumers before reading this more-detailed content.

What can I do with visualizations?

Visualizations are created by report and dashboard designers and shared with consumers. As a consumer, you have many options for interacting with visualizations to uncover insights and make data-driven business decisions. All of these options are listed in the table below, with links to step-by-step instructions.


But first, a word about Q&A. Q&A is Power BI's natural language search tool. You type a question using natural language and Q&A answers the question in the form of a visualization. Q&A is a way consumers can create their own visualizations. However, the visualizations you create with Q&A cannot be saved. But, if there's something specific you want to learn from the data, and the designer didn't include it in a report or on a dashboard, Q&A is a great option. To learn more about Q&A, see Q&A for consumers.

Task On a dashboard In a report In Q&A
Add comments to a visualization for yourself or start a conversation with colleagues about the visualization. yes no no
Open and explore the report where the visualization was created. yes na na
Open and explore a visualization in Q&A (if Q&A was used to create the visualization) yes na na
Ask Power BI to look for interesting facts or trends in the visualization's data for you. These are called auto insights. yes yes no
View just one visualization at a time using focus mode. yes yes no
Look up the last time the visualization was refreshed. yes yes no
View just one visualization at a time, without borders or navigation bars, using full screen mode. yes yes no
Print. yes yes no
Dig into the visualization by adding and modifying visualization filters. no yes yes
Hover over a visualization to reveal additional details and tooltips. yes yes yes
Cross-filter and cross-highlight other visualizations on the page. no yes na
Show the data used to create the visualization. no yes yes
Change the way the visualization is sorted. no yes no
Add a spotlight to a visualization. no yes no
Analyze (depending on visualization type). no yes no

Next steps

Back to Basic concepts for consumers
Select a visualization to open a report
Types of visualizations available in Power BI