Power BI is a collection of software services, apps, and connectors that work together to turn your unrelated sources of data into coherent, visually immersive, and interactive insights. Your data may be an Excel spreadsheet or a collection of cloud-based and on-premises hybrid data warehouses Power BI lets you easily connect to your data sources, visualize and discover what's important, and share that with anyone or everyone you want.
Power BI consists of several elements that all work together, starting with these three basics:
A Windows desktop application called Power BI Desktop.
An online SaaS (Software as a Service) service called the Power BI service.
Power BI mobile apps for Windows, iOS, and Android devices.
These three elements—Power BI Desktop, the service, and the mobile apps—are designed to let you create, share, and consume business insights in the way that serves you and your role most effectively.
Beyond those three, Power BI also features two other elements:
Power BI Report Builder, for creating paginated reports to share in the Power BI service. Read more about paginated reports later in this article.
Power BI Report Server, an on-premises report server where you can publish your Power BI reports, after creating them in Power BI Desktop. Read more about Power BI Report Server later in this article.