Reading View and Editing View in Power BI service reports

In Power BI service (not Power BI Desktop) there are two modes for viewing and interacting with reports: Reading view and Editing view. Reading view is available to all users and is especially designed for data consumers while Editing view is only available to report creators and owners.

artwork of report creators and report consumers

Report Reading view

Reading view is your way to explore and interact with the report -- it's a fun and safe way to play with and get to know your data. Reading view is designed for report consumers; those who open reports from Apps or who have reports shared with them. Reading view ensures that every single consumer of a specific report is seeing the same report, the same visualizations, and optionally with the same filters applied. Consumers can interact with the reports, can change the existing filters (and these changes are saved with the report), but cannot add new filters.

NOTE: In certain circumstances, report consumers may see different data because of row level security and data permissions.

Report Editing view

Editing view is only available to those who created the report or who co-own a report as a member or admin of an app workspace.

Editing view is designed for report creators. This is where creators import and connect to datasets, explore the data, and build reports and dashboards. In Editing view creators can dig even deeper into their data by adding and removing fields, changing visualization type, creating new visualizations, and adding and deleting visualizations and pages from the report. They can then share the reports they create with colleagues.

Reading view versus Editing view

This chart does not list all the report capabilities of Power BI service! It lists only those report tasks that are not available in both Reading view and Editing view.

Task Reading view Editing view
Reports, as a whole
Create or edit a report No Yes
Share a report Yes Yes, and can also manage permissions, including giving others owner permissions.
Create persistent (permanent) visual-level, drilthrough, page-level, and report-level filters from Filters pane No Yes
Use report Filters pane Yes, can use the existing filters and changes can be saved with the report, but new filters cannot be added. Yes
Use the report Analytics pane No Yes
Report View options Yes, with some exceptions. Yes, all, including gridlines, snap, and lock.
Create a refresh schedule No Yes
Subscribe to a report Yes No
Q&A - ask questions in reports No Yes
View Usage metrics Yes, on the report canvas. Yes, in the report list (content view)
View related Yes, on the report canvas. Yes, in the report list (content view)
Save a report Yes, but only using Save as. Yes
Delete a report No Yes
Report pages
Add or rename a report page No Yes
Duplicate a report page No Yes
Delete report page no yes
Working with report visualizations
Add visualizations to a report No Yes
Add text boxes, and shapes to a report No Yes
Use the report Formatting pane No Yes
Set visual interactions No Yes
Show data used to create the visualization No Yes
Configure drilling No Yes
Change the visualization being used No Yes
Delete a visualization, text box, or shape No Yes

Remember, only the report creator and owner(s) will be able to open a report in Editing view.

  1. By default, a report usually opens in Reading view. You can tell you're in Reading view if you see an option for Edit report. If Edit report is greyed out, you do not have permissions to open the report in Editing view.

    Edit report greyed out

  2. If Edit Report is not greyed out, select it to open the report in Editing view.

    Edit report option

    The report is now in Editing view and uses the same display settings you last used in Reading view.

  3. To return to Reading view, select Reading view from the top navigation bar.

    Reading view option

Next steps

There are so many ways to interact with a report in Reading view, slicing and dicing your data to discover insights and get answers to questions. The next topic, Interact with a report in Reading view, describes some of these in detail.
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