With business intelligence(BI) tools playing a more critical role in enterprises, the technology is poised for an oversized effect in the coming year. BI software plays a crucial role in aiding businesses with data display and data analytics, enabling companies to uncover insights into situations, market challenges, and opportunities. Consequently, IT departments and managers frequently engage in a search for the most suitable BI tool for their specific needs. The process of BI tool comparison serves as a valuable guide in comparing BI tools and aids in selecting the most fitting one.

BI Dashboard (by FineReport)
Try FineReport Now

In this article, I compared the top 8 BI tools of 2024 based on the overall ease of use, BI features, and price. In the end, after comparison, you will see which software is best suited for the needs of you and your company.

1. BI Tool Comparison: Unveiling the Essence and Significance

BI tools are software applications used to collect, manipulate, analyze, and present large volumes of historical, current, and predictive data. Their goal is to produce valuable business insights, create interactive reports, and streamline decision-making processes.

These platforms for business intelligence incorporate fundamental attributes such as data visualization, interactive dashboarding, visual analytics, and KPI scorecards. Furthermore, they enable end-users to employ self-service-based automated reporting and predictive analytics capabilities within a single solution, streamlining the analytical process and making it more accessible.

2. BI Tool Comparison: Enhancing Business with BI Tools

Business intelligence software and tools provide numerous benefits, and in this article, we will discuss the most valuable ones:

Consolidate all relevant data

Whether you work for a small company or a large enterprise, you likely collect data from various sources such as portals, ERPs, CRMs, flat files, databases, and APIs. To effectively manage all these sources and gain a better understanding of the collected information, it is essential to have high levels of data intelligence. Modern data connectors enable you to centralize disparate sources, providing you with a comprehensive view of all your business processes. This makes it easier to identify issues, and trends, perform cross-analysis, and take action based solely on data.

Self-service analytics

It provides each person in the organization with modern business intelligence software that allows them to explore data on their own. This reduces the need to request reports from the IT department, giving organizations a competitive advantage. Every employee has the right amount of data analytics skills, ultimately saving the company time and resources while enabling the IT department to focus on other critical tasks.

Predictive analytics

It enables business users of any level of expertise to generate insights for future scenarios, helping them adjust current strategies to achieve the best possible results. Intelligent data alerts powered by artificial intelligence safeguard against anomalies that can occur while managing large amounts of data, allowing users to react immediately.

Reduce manual work

By automated reporting, modern BI tools eliminate endless amounts of rows and columns and reduce manual tasks. For instance, KPI dashboards update themselves with real-time data, and reports can be automated with specified time intervals. Additionally, creating interactive dashboards is much simpler, allowing users to directly interact with data all on one screen.

Reduce business expenditure

BI platforms enable faster planning, analysis, and reporting processes, reducing business costs. They are available all the time, providing a full BI experience with all data hosted in a secure online environment. This ensures that data is accessible from anywhere and on any device.

Win competitive advantages over others

Businesses that use their data to their advantage can set themselves apart from competitors. Being able to make informed strategic decisions is invaluable, and BI software offers the necessary knowledge and functionalities to efficiently manage business data, propelling productivity and growth.

Regardless of the size of the company, business intelligence software is essential for controlling data and gaining insight into the company’s operations. To help users take advantage of these benefits, a list of top business intelligence tools has been compiled, which provides intuitive data management and discovery, ensures security, and guarantees increased productivity and profits.

3. BI Tool Comparison: Evaluating the Top 8 BI Tools  

  • Overall ease-of-use: How well designed is the user interface? Is it intuitive? How hard is it to get started with the tool? Do they have the training, tooltips, or videos to help you learn what you’re doing?
  • BI Features: What are the pros and cons you should pay attention to?
  • Price: How much does it cost? 

3.1 FineBI In-depth Review

BI Dashboard (by FineBI)

Overall ease-of-use

FineBI is a modern big data analytics & BI software designed for everyone who requires data analysis. Everyone of any level can use FineBI to easily establish professional BI dashboards, perform self-service data analysis, gain useful insights, and thus drive your business forward.

Through simple operations like drag-and-drop, you can create professional dashboards without difficulty! Also, FineBI offers technical support service 24/7 online, so you can ask for technical help whenever you need it.

BI Features: Pros and Cons

Pro: Support Multiple Data Integration

FineBI is fully capable of managing data from multiple sources based on business. Including database tables, SQL sets, Excel, self-service data sets, etc. And FineBI also supports instant classification.

Also, with its high-performance spider engine, FineBI directly reads the database tables and computes billions of data in seconds, which is suitable for analytics scenarios with high real-time requirements. 

Pro: Data Analysis

FineBI’s data visualization and intelligent analysis are very good. It only needs simple drag and drop to realize various dimensions and various forms of analysis.

Pro: Data Modeling

FineBI can establish association relationships between dimension tables and fact tables for basic metadata to form association models to improve the efficiency of the data visualization analysis. When FineBI is dealing with cross-data source association modeling, due to its unique intelligent memory mechanism, FineBI can also intelligently perform memory association modeling even in the face of real-time data from different sources.

Pro: Data Management

FineBI has a very complete data permission management and control capability. In addition to providing dashboard permission distribution, it can also perform row/column level data permission management and control for personnel in different departments/positions/roles. In addition, in terms of data authority control for enterprise groups, FineBI provides powerful multi-level control authority for users to assign multi-level authority, which provides a guarantee for the data authority control of group enterprises.

Con: Does not support direct connection to data sources

FineBI does not support direct connection to business system data sources, it needs to use business packages to process data.

Con: No automatic analysis

FineBI does not support automatic analysis.


FineBI is free without time or feature limits for personal use. For enterprises, it offers a quote-based plan that charges according to different situations. In a word, FineBI is price-friendly to all customers.

Try FineBI Now

3.2 FineReport In-depth Review

best BI tool
From Google

Overall ease-of-use

With the Excel-like interface and drag-and-drop elements, FineReport is easy for newbies to start. Anyone who used Excel before can be a fast learner of FineReport. The official website provides detailed teaching documents and videos for users. Plus, and more importantly, the technical support service is 24/7.

Excel-like interface (by FineReport)

BI Features: Pros and Cons

Pro: Smart Data entry

Data entry is a distinct feature of FineReport. It provides rich controls that make it easy to input massive data via forms directly into databases, with thoughtful functions such as data validation and temporary storage. Besides, supports importing Excel data online and in batches.

Pro: Easy to make complex reports

The capacity for dealing with complex reports is impressive. Free splicing together aggregation blocks, eliminating the trouble of frequently merging and splitting cells in Excel. Each aggregation block is independent; you can drag&drop and put them together freely to create irregular reports.

Con: No auto-recommend charts feature

Although FineReport provides a wealth of visual effects, charts, maps, and 3D effects, it does not recommend charts according to the data. You should choose the charts by yourself. 


Same as FineBI, FineReport is free for personal use, without the time and feature limits. For enterprises, it charges based on a Quote-based Plan. Given the price, it is a more economical choice.

Free Trial of FineReport

3.3 What is the Difference Between FineBI and FineReport?

FineReport and FineBI are both data analysis tools under FanRuan Software Co., Ltd. A great number of enterprises choose to employ Finereport and FineBI at the same time. The perfect combination and complementarity of Finereport and FineBI make it way easier to meet enterprises’ needs for complex reports and real-time data analysis.

The differences between Finereport and FineBI are as follows:

To summarize, FineBI is a self-service BI tool, designed for all staff in the companies and especially data analysts. The operation of FineBI is simple, focusing on allowing everyone who has data analysis needs to achieve self-service data analysis.

FineReport is a reporting tool, which is suitable for IT staff or reports developers to make. Other departments in the company can view the report or update the data. At this time, whether the production of the report is fast or not depends on the reporting tool. For example, FineReport uses an Excel-like design interface to greatly improve production efficiency and save IT staff a lot of time.

If you want to know more about the differences between Finereport and FineBI, you can refer to the article: Difference between Finereport and FineBI.

If you want to know more about FineBI and how Finereport and/or FineBI can best suit your needs, you can click the button below and talk to our professional team to get your personalized plan!

Try FineBI Now

3.4 Tableau In-depth Review

Top BI tool
From Google

Overall ease-of-use

The tool’s intuitive manner of creating graphics and a user-friendly interface enable lay users to utilize the basic app’s functionality to the fullest. When designing a dashboard, you need to create a worksheet and then drag it to the container. For first-time users, it takes time to get used to it. 

However, in general, non-technical users can enjoy the stats parsing capabilities without in-depth training. For more profound knowledge to get into the solution’s capabilities, the Tableau community is an excellent place to go since Tableau’s fans invest their expertise and skills into the community steadily, and they are willing to help settle any user issues and share their experience. 

BI Features: pros & cons

  • Pro: Support Multiple Data Sources 

Support relational database

Support NoSQL database such as MongoDB reporting

Support multi-dimensional database

Big Data Platform 

File data sources (Execl,csv, txt, Json, pdf, mdb, Tableau)

  • Pro: Stunning Data Visualization 

Unparalleled capabilities of visualizing information are at the top of the list of Tableau software benefits. Using unique visualization technology, we can quickly analyze data by expressing the analysis results using colors, shapes, and sizes. The development team is working on investigating what types of charts users prefer so that Tableau can display the best graphs for the data. The only disadvantage in this part is the meter, 3D graph, and heat map cannot be made.

  • Con: Poor BI Capabilities 

Compared to other BI tools, Tableau lacks the functionality required for a comprehensive business intelligence tool, such as large-scale reporting, the building of data tables, and static layouts. Also, the formats of exporting and printing are limited, which is inconvenient for result sharing.

  • Con: Customized Issues 

Tableau is almost closed and hard to customize or embed into companies’ IT landscape.


The price is based on the number of users. Considering that the cost of a license is quite high for most small to medium companies, Tableau is primarily the choice of large enterprises. 

3.5 PowerBI In-depth Review

BI Tool comparison
From Google

Overall ease-of-use

Since it is a BI tool developed by Microsoft, basically Excel pivot tables with Excel’s data visualization tools taken to the next level, the UI of PowerBI is similar to Excel, and it allows for a short learning curve. It also provides detailed learning videos and documents for further learning.

BI Features: pros &cons

  • Pro: Excel Integration

PowerBI can seamlessly connect to any MS Office. Also, with PowerBI, you can put the data in Excel where you can easily see the raw data behind the visualization.

  • Pro: R script visualization

PowerBI is the only one among the top 8 BI tools that support R, which uses the rich analytics and visualization power of R to present advanced data shaping and analytics such as forecasting.

  • Con: Authority management issues

It is not enterprise-class control, so it does not support multi-level permission allocation, it cannot control the permission granularity of column-level viewed by users, and there is no corresponding complete control strategy for group permission control.

  • Con: Poor data handling capacity for free versions

The free version has a limit on the amount of data it can deal with. Once the data amount hits 2GB, you have to upgrade to the paid version to reduce the processing time.  


If you’re on a tight budget and seeking an economical solution, Power BI is the ideal choice. The Pro version is priced at $9.99/user/month, making it a cost-effective option compared to similar products in its niche.

3.6 QlikView In-depth Review

Compare BI Tools
From Google

Overall ease-of-use

QlikView is a self-service BI tool that operates with its own “association technology” and in-memory technology. It features an instinctive interface for seamless navigation and incorporates an intelligent search function. With no need for cube construction, it is better suited for ad hoc analysis rather than routine analysis.

BI features: pros and cons

  • Pro: In-Memory Technology

QlikView calculates the data while the data is being transferred from the backend to the frontend, thanks to its in-memory technology. Because no pre-aggregated or pre-calculated data is stored beforehand, the memory of the system can be saved, and the speed in data delivery is fast.

  • Pro: Direct & Indirect Data Searched

In QlikView, you can search for both direct and indirect data. In a direct search, you can input that data and get your information. In indirect search, you can input something related to your desired data and get all the related data.

  • Con: Not user-friendly for non-technical users

Data management should be more user-friendly. Right now, it is in the script editor. Someone with good knowledge of Relational Database can easily handle this, but a programmer’s knowledge is a must. End users or non-technical people may be timid to start with QlikView as they will find it hard to start with.

  • Con: Not support map charts

Creating geographic mapping charts is pretty complex unless third-party add-ons are purchased.


Each private user on QlikView is $1,350, and concurrent users are $15,000. A server license is $35,000. Other services are available at an additional cost.

3.7 Sisense In-depth Review

From Google

Overall ease-of-use

Like other market leaders of BI tools, the interface is intuitive and users can operate via drag-and-drop. Sisense also has an online community. Although users of Sisense’s community are less active than Tableau‘s, the resources in that community are enough for newbies for deep learning.

BI features: pros & cons

  • Pro: Fast speed

With the software’s in-chip engine, you can ask any question and get answers immediately without needing to go back to the drawing board for new queries.

  • Pro: Flexible integration

Sisense can smoothly integrate with popular third-party applications, including Google Adwords, Excel, Zendesk, and Salesforce.

  • Con: Limited charts

Charts are limited. Also, out-of-the-box visualizations and reporting features are a bit too basic compared to the market leaders 

  • Con: Inconvenient for team cooperation

Admins currently cannot edit each others’ dashboards. Only the owner of folders and dashboards can publish any changes.


Provide the free trial, the full version price is quote-based, and need to contact vendors.

3.8 Oracle Business Intelligence In-depth Review

Overall ease-of-use

Oracle Business Intelligence is a comprehensive suite of technology and applications designed to provide end-to-end solutions that optimize business performance and enable faster, more informed mobile decision-making. Founded in 1977, Oracle offers a broad range of data management features, including machine learning, artificial intelligence, and integrated querying, reporting, and mobile analytics.

BI features: pros & cons

  • Pro: Oracle BI Server

This complete BI server offers centralized data access across the enterprise for all data-backed business processes, such as dashboards, ad hoc querying, OLAP analysis, and data mining.

  • Pro: Ad hoc capabilities Oracle BI Answers

This feature provides intuitive ad hoc capabilities, enabling users to easily generate charts and visualize data quickly and efficiently.

  • Pro: Oracle BI Dashboards

Personalized dashboards offer interactive access to information tailored to individual roles and identities, allowing users to work with live reports, charts, graphics, and pivot tables in pure web architecture.

  • Con: Slow speed on some occasions

According to some reviews, Oracle BI can run slowly on some occasions, especially when generating reports. Some functions, such as adding information to data models, can be complicated and time-consuming.


The price varies depending on the need, you need to contact Oracle vendors for more information

3.9 IBM Cognos Analytics In-depth Review

Overall ease-of-use

IBM Cognos Analytics is an AI-powered cloud-based business intelligence software that offers geospatial capabilities and allows users to communicate with the software in plain English. IBM is a leading company in software development.

BI features: pros & cons

  • Pro: Search function

The new search function of Cognos Analytics allows you to access recent content and filter and save your searches.

  • Pro: Interactive visualization

Users can easily create dynamic dashboards using drag-and-drop, with interactive visualizations and geospatial mapping.

  • Pro: AI assistant

The AI assistant allows users to communicate in plain language and recommend suitable visualizations based on the question asked.

  • Con: Lack of comprehensive dashboard features

It may take some time to learn all the features of this software. Some users have reported that it is not suitable for those seeking comprehensive dashboard features.


Provide a free trial, the full version price is quote-based, and need to contact vendors 

4. BI Tool Comparison: Choosing the Best Fit

So, after conducting a thorough BI tool comparison, when assessing these top 8 BI tools, which one stands out as the best choice? It becomes evident that each BI software has its own set of strengths and weaknesses. If you find yourself uncertain about which software aligns better with your personal and company requirements, conducting a meticulous BI tool comparison may provide valuable insights to aid your decision-making process.

4.1 Look at FineBI if you:

  • Have demand for processing tens of millions and hundreds of millions of data
  • Want to level up the efficiency of data analysis
  • Need to build an IT-led enterprise-level management platform
Try FineBI Now

4.2 Look at FineReport if you:

  • Need for reducing time in building complex reports in batches
  • Have requirements for flexible deployment and integration of BI tool
  • Want to display your dashboards on TV screens or large screens 
Try FineReport Now

4.3 Look at Tableau if you:

  •  Need for software that provides excellent data visualization
  •  Have an adequate budget
  • Want to do some business analysis by yourself with a drag-and-drop interface

4.4 Look at PowerBI if you:

  • Are using MS Office and be familiar with Excel 
  • Have a small budget, and you are looking for an affordable option 
  • Value teamwork and the collaboration feature of the software

4.5 Look at QlikView if you:

  • Focus on ad-hoc analysis.
  • Deal with vast sets of data and have a high demand for data delivery speed
  • Master some basic knowledge of relational databases and programming knowledge 

4.6 Look at Sisense if you:

  • Have to deal with big and disparate datasets
  • Have a high requirement for data processing speed
  • Are looking for software that covers the full range of business analytics

4.7 Look at Oracle if you:

4.8 Look at Cognos if you:

  • Want to use the function of an AI assistant
  • Need a single data module
  • Need interactive visualizations and geospatial mapping

Explore Other Resources

Reporting Tools | 7 min read
Weekly reporting is a must at work. Here introduces the definition, formats, templates, suggestions for writing weekly reports. Click to read more!
Reporting Tools | 5 min read
Self-service reporting empowers business users to generate reports without tying up IT departments. It's time to choose a self-service reporting tool.
Reporting Tools | 9 min read
Let's see what, why, and how to do automated reporting. Try automatic reporting software and experience its benefits, it will improve your efficiency.