With last month's update to Power BI Desktop, Microsoft began recommending new or popular template apps that could be utilized by users with ease. In continuation with this move, while detailing the features that had been rolled out as part of Power BI Desktop's September release, the tech giant highlighted "Google Analytics report" for this month as a suitable template option.
Today, Microsoft has introduced a new template apps update capability in preview. Starting now, Power BI premium or pro users who download any of the template apps from Microsoft's business applications store, AppSource, will be able to update them while preserving the connection configuration.
In simpler words, the "Get it now" option to attain a new version of your installed template app will result in the appearance of a new choice that enables you to overwrite the existing version. This means that parameters configured with a firm's online websites won't be altered with this change. Previously, users were only able to install a newer version to a different workspace. Importantly, if personal customizations have been made to reports or the dashboard, it is recommended to save the former or clone the latter before proceeding with the overwriting process.
Moreover, the Power BI team has improved the sample data experience with template apps. Now, even if sufficient data isn't available to properly test out various components of the new interface, users can learn more by making use of sample data. In such cases, a banner will be displayed on top of report and dashboard pages to indicate that sample data is being used. A new samples section has been added to the template apps documentation to further assist users in its usage. Moving ahead, template apps' .pbix source files developed by Microsoft or its partners will be shared with users.
And finally, with Microsoft's push for template apps, content service packs will largely be removed from the AppSource store in the coming days, with the Redmond firm aiming to migrate all existing users by then. By the end of this month, Power BI apps on AppSource will almost exclusively feature template apps. Users who are interested can check these out here. It can be expected that the template apps update capability will be rolled out to standard users soon as well.