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Update Oct 11, 2013:  I’ve been given the “all clear” by Microsoft and from readers that as of this week, Excel 2013 Standalone DOES include and successfully install Power Pivot!

You can get Power Pivot by buying Excel 2013 Standalone (Currently at $99) OR Office 365 ProPlus Subscription (Currently at $12 per user/per month). See this post for details on Excel 2013.


PowerPivot and Power View Not Available in Excel 2013?


Are These Missing for You in Excel 2013?
The Short Answer is That You Need “Pro Plus” – “Professional” is NOT Enough

Overdue Post in Response to a Popular Question

I’ve been getting tons of questions about this – in email, twitter, on forums, etc.

The questions all go something like this:  “Hey Rob I just bought Office 2013, went to enable PowerPivot, and it’s not there!  It was supposed to be included in 2013 right?”

It’s a fair question of course.  And yes, my original expectation was precisely that – it would be in 2013 for everyone.

Well the short version is that Microsoft took PowerPivot and Power View OUT of most versions of Office 2013.

We will now pause for a moment of disappointed silence Sad smile

If you want to know how to “fix” this problem, skip to the end of the post.  First, I want to tell a story, because the innards of MS are often something that interests people.

“Why Would They Do Such a Thing??”


This is, of course, the next natural question.  And as luck has it, I have a LOT of personal experience with precisely this kind of thing, from back in my days working on the Excel team.

In short the answer is that this is probably Access’s “fault.”  I’m only half serious.  But only half joking too.

Let’s jump in the Wayback Machine and visit a time known as Excel 2003.  (And yes, I know that for many people, Excel 2003 sadly still represents “today,” but let’s not dwell on that ok?)

As we got close to releasing Office 2003, the Marketing team came to us with a problem:  not enough customers were buying Office Professional anymore.  Too many people were buying Office Standard.

Since Professional was priced a good bit higher than Standard, this clearly was Not A Good Thing.  In fact, it was never Microsoft’s intent for ANYONE to buy Standard.  Standard existed just so that Professional could exist by contrast.  Standard was the item on the menu that the restaurant never wanted you to order.

The only difference, back then, between Standard and Professional was whether Access was included.  Professional had it, Standard lacked it.  And, sadly, corporations were using Access less and less, so they started buying Standard.

To combat this, Marketing had an idea:  let’s take some features of the OTHER applications out of Standard!  The question they asked us engineers was this:  “What did you guys put into this version of Excel that won’t be used by everyone?  Give us that list so we can figure out what we should remove from Standard.”

At first, I was flattered.  And then…



Have You Ever Used This Feature of Excel?
The XML Thing?  Lie to Me.  Say Yes.

2003 was the first time I was a “Lead” on any project at MS.  And it was the first time that I ever conceived an entire feature idea, got it approved, led the team that built it, and shepherded it through release.

For me that was a Big Deal.  In hindsight it was a “niche” feature.  But at the time, XML was a “hot” topic in data circles, and all of us expected that if we didn’t add XML capabilities to Excel, we’d regret it.  So we didn’t realize that this feature was destined for obscurity.  (It was only on the NEXT release of Excel, 2007, that I studied under David Gainer and became wiser about such things).

But there weren’t many features in Excel 2003, period.  The entire Office organization had been instructed to do “web stuff” for that release (about 10 years early, it seems) and left only skeleton crews working on the regular applications.  This was a closely guarded secret.  I was part of the skeleton crew.

So when Marketing came to me and said “hey, we want to use YOUR feature to help sell Professional,” I was pretty stoked.  At first.

But this turned out to be a Very Bad Idea.  I vividly remember the Excel MVP’s and their reaction to the decision to remove the XML feature from Standard:


“If I can’t rely on my customers ALL having this feature, I can’t build any solutions or workbooks using the feature.  So I will completely ignore the XML feature.”

-basically any Excel MVP

This idea of removing features from Standard was such a universal disaster that the very first thing we did in Office 2007 was to put all features back into all versions of Office.

“So why are they doing it again???  Are they EVIL???”



“I Want YOU to Buy the Premium SKU’s of Office”

Nope, this is not Microsoft being evil.  This is just the (sometimes foolish) thing that happens at massive companies where each division has its own success factors.  Two big things are in play here:

1) The people associated with the last round of this, in 2003, are gone now.  And to be honest, it’s a pretty solid idea on paper.  I can’t blame anyone for thinking of it.  None of us knew how poorly it was going to work out ahead of time.  But when everyone associated with the last round has moved on, the institutional memory is gone, so it needs to be re-learned.

2) What is “good” for Office might not be what’s “good” for SQL.  Remember, the SQL team are the folks who built PowerPivot.  And it was their decision to give PowerPivot away for free (on the desktop anyway) in Excel 2010.  But now that Office controls what goes in the box, well, PowerPivot fell under the watchful gaze of Office Marketing, who still is under orders (pressure!) to sell more of the higher-end SKU’s (flavors) of Office.  And boy, was PowerPivot a tempting target.

Here’s where it gets clumsy:  Microsoft is going to win the BI war by embracing the fact that most “BI” takes place in Excel.  And winning the BI war is going to be very, very lucrative for them.  I’m pretty sure most of the SQL team “gets” that.  But the Office team looked at this and, with a shallower perspective on BI, said “well BI is an Enterprise thing.  The average individual user won’t need that, so let’s use that stuff to differentiate!”

The line between “BI” and “Excel” has always been awkward and artificial.  Accepting that line to be “blurry,” and building tools that make us more productive on the boundary, is the smartest thing MS has done in a long time.  We can credit the SQL team for this – ironic perhaps, but true.

My expectation is that this is the Office team not getting the message about the line being blurry.  It’s understandable that they “missed the memo” so to speak – the BI market is just a fraction of their radar screen.  But at bare minimum this seems like a breakdown in internal communication.

“OK, so I need Pro Plus.  Cool, I’ll just order it from Amazon.”

Right.  You need the Pro Plus flavor.  But wrong.  You can’t get it from Amazon.  Or any store really.

That’s the quirkiest part of this whole story.  It’s only available through volume licensing or when bundled with specific O365 subscriptions.

Chris Webb does a good job of breaking down the various SKU’s [link removed due to 404] here.  He has more patience for deciphering this sort of thing than I do, so go read what he wrote Smile


No one at MS has confirmed ANY of my speculation about the hows and whys of this decision.  This is all just me piecing things together from the outside.

That said, I am VERY confident in this diagnosis.  I just know this particular machine – both the SQL and Office halves – very well.

Make Your Voice Heard!

Lastly, I also think that this decision is so clearly “off strategy” that I hold out hope that they reconsider.

If you think that pulling PowerPivot and Power View from retail SKUs of Office 2013 was a bad idea, leave me a comment and let me know, because Microsoft will see it too.  We’ll treat it like a petition.

Rob Collie

Rob Collie

One of the original engineering leaders behind Power BI and Power Pivot during his 14-year career at Microsoft, Rob Collie founded a consulting company in 2013 that is 100% devoted to “the new way forward” made possible by Power BI and its related technologies. Since 2013, PowerPivotPro has rapidly grown to become the leading firm in the industry, pioneering an agile, results-first methodology never before seen in the Business Intelligence space. A sought-after public speaker and author of the #1-selling Power BI book, Rob and his team would like to help you revolutionize your business and your career.

This Post Has 324 Comments
    1. Completely agree… bad idea. I bought office 365 home PREMIUM expecting to be able to use PowerPivot and PowerView… with Premium in the title I would expect it to have all of the features. Now I have to buy Excel Pro to get the functionality… very frustrating!

      1. Just to be 100% clear, you either need Excel 2013 Standalone installed over the top, OR you need the Pro PLUS Suite. Pro Suite will NOT do it.

  1. Will it still be available for download ?

    If not, I find it to be a very bad decision, else it’s somewhat not that different from before (office 2010.

    Thanks for all the detals btw.

  2. Basically, this is yet another example of “we don’t give a damn what you do with what we sell you”. If Microsoft was really interested in “BI for the masses” as they claim, then the tools would be for the masses. Case closed.

    1. The problem is that when we use the word “Microsoft” as if it’s a unified entity, we simultaneously give MS too much and too little credit. Fact is MS is made of different teams, divisions, cultures, and individuals. It’s like whispering a secret around a circle – what starts out clear gets garbled as it makes its way from one side of the company to the other.

      MS is not one collective mind, it’s thousands of mostly free agents. Every now and then, something really funny happens as a result. There is no “voice” to MS, no unified “hive mind.” Just people operating in a sea of noise and conflicting priorities.

  3. Horrible idea. Just thinking about this makes me sick. My expectation upfront was that it 2013 would be the same as 2010 but without having to download and install it separately. Setting that expectation (explicit or implied) and then pulling the rug out will probably anger many people and potentially turn them off in search of other solutions.I am incredibly disappointed

  4. But is it still possible for the Standard version to install PowerPivot as an AddIn as with 2010? Or does this mean that apart from a few versions, _there is no way one can use PowerPivot in 2013_? This would be by far the biggest idiocy I have seen in quite a while!!!

  5. It is obvious now why they removed the ability to create or edit measures in the Field List, which I just thought was a bad idea, but instead was the result of an ulterior motive. However, this implies that this marketing decision was made “long ago”.

    1. Heh, that was the thing that was disappointing me BEFORE this SKU thing came to light. I’d love to get back to complaining about measures being awkward in the field list. That one was just a matter of not having time to finish the feature though – an engineering time constraint rather than a biz decision. And I hope they correct that one, too 🙂

    2. The reason for this is that the field list belongs to the Data Model built into Excel 2013. It’s not the same as the PowerPivot field list we use in Excel 2010. As such, in Excel 2013 the field list has to work independently of the PowerPivot add-in being available.

      1. “in Excel 2013 the field list has to work independently of the PowerPivot add-in being available” No, it doesn’t. They could have easily had a “Add Measure” menu item upon right-click, which would be greyed out if the add-in was not enabled. It is still obvious (to me) that design decisions were made relative to their marketing plans (whether everyone within MSFT knew about it or not).

  6. So much for BI for the masses, I guess. Large corporation have BI solutions anyway, but small companies suddenly had access to a great BI solution, and without sharepoint, you had to rely on everybody haviing the newest version of Office. Without Powerpivot, we would still be using a mix af Excel 2003, OpenOffice and a very old Cognos Solution. I personally spend two years learning Dax and promoting Excel in our company, but without Powerpivot, instead of everybody upgrading to Excel 2013 we will contiune using older version and finally wave goodbye to MS Office.

    1. Precisely why I considered this post overdue. Glad I got to you first. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that they correct this 🙂

  7. If they want to make money out of PowerPivot they can simply offer it for sell as a separate add-in. Anyway, looks like I’m going to stick to 2010…

  8. MS is definitely shooting themselves in the leg with the decision not to include PowerPivot in all of the Office 2013 SKUs.

    How does MS expect new users to learn how to use PowerPivot? Example: College students taking business courses to become analyst, how will they gain experience in using PowerPivot in the classroom and self study? What about individuals who want to introduce PowerPivot into their company by showing examples of what this program can do? How about individual consultants that do not qualify for Professional Plus, how are they going to gain access to PowerPivot? Note: I just confirm with MS that they will not sell an “individual” the Professional Plus version

    1. Definitely where my fears are. What will be the adoption rate for PowerPivot, if it is not available with the standard edition? This is a terrible decision.

      Honestly, I do not care too much about PowerView joining XML support in oblivion.

    2. I am a faculty member who teaches analytics. Students will be put at an extreme disadvantage by this decision. Incredibly short-sighted indeed!

  9. PowerPivot HAS to be available for all Excel users. My business may buy Pro, but my wife’s small office certainly won’t, so I won’t be able to help her with PowerPivot. Frankly, PowerPivot being ‘free’ was a major reason I moved from using Tableau to using PowerPivot.

  10. How can I chamption PowerPivot to companies with the excuse the its part of Excel. Microsoft must put PowerPivot/PowerView in ALL Excel versions if they want to win the BI war!

  11. Maybe someone should inform MS that not everyone using PowerPivot is analyzing millions of rows of data. Rob as you pointed out, PowerPivot can also be used to analyze data with fewer than 100 items. I had planned on upgrading to Office 2013, but will be sticking with Office 2010.

  12. Well, I kinda was wondering a year back why MS were giving PowerPivot away for free, when obviously it was a very expensive feature to develop and maybe they could charge a little something extra (and reasonable) for the Add-in to cover their cost. After all, it would still be a heck of a lot cheaper than Tableau (although nowhere near as cool and advanced). And I’ve purchased other addins for Excel (and installed a great deal of excellent free ones), so I have a precedent for mind paying something REASONABLE to greatly increase the headroom of my analysis, and provided the cost is also considered reasonable to the clients I service to the point that they also invest.

    Obviously someone at MS was wondering that as well.

    But charging for an add-in that is cross-version compatible is one thing, breaking compatibility completely between different license versions is another altogether. So I’ve just crossed your book of my Amazon wishlist, Rob. Might as well spare myself the no doubt highly entertaining read…

    That said, there’s an up-side to this for a consultant that knows how to mash together disparate data sources from Excel using VBA/ADO/SQL so that they all appear in one pivot…which of course is ENTIRELY possible with Excel 2003 let alone 2013. So the upside is that Powerpivot didn’t just shoot a hole in my target market.

    1. Tableau has far better charting capabilities than Excel/PowerPivot. It is next to impossible to do “what if” charting scenarios in Excel. It breaks the chart. You can maneuver fields around in Tableau without ruining your work.

  13. Very disappointed by this decision. I can’t recommend my customers to move to Excel 2013 if PowerPivot won’t be available to them, nevermind the fact that as an individual I can’t even get access to the tool even though I wouldn’t mind paying for it. This makes no sense at all.

  14. I have been using Pivot tables for a while and was astonished with the things I saw in PowerPivot today. Excited, in a geeky kind of way, I ran home, downloaded for 2010, and was excited about what 2013 might have to offer, contacted our IT guy to figure out if I qualified for a license. hmm… not so much. I think I will be staying in 2010. Its too bad BIG corporations have short memories and repeat poor decisions like this.

  15. Great post Rob. It seems like there are conflicting objectives in different product groups at Microsoft. We’ll be holding off upgrading to office 2013.

    I was at a sap conference this week looking at their predictive analysis tools. I also saw their self serve BI tools, not so expensive compared to SharePoint+office. With retrospect, I’m glad I went. Thankfully there are many alternatives in the BI space. This is a lose lose for Microsoft.

  16. I worked this out myself just this weekend after taking a trial of the Home version and finding it missing. This is disappointing, and I will be advising our company against an upgrade – PowerPivot is starting to gain traction in our company thanks to my incessant nagging. However, what I’m not entirely clear on is the separateion between the built in Data Model and the PowerPivot addon. Can we still create measures? How about pivots and slicers that use all the data in the Data Model?

    1. Jeff, to my understanding, the existence of the data model in non – “Pro Plus” versions of Excel allows any powerpivot models to be refreshed and used. The issue is around creation and modification of those models. Basically, if the command is on the powerpivot ribbon (creating/modifying measures) or inside the powerpivot window, then you’re out of luck and need the Pro Plus version.

      1. Ahhh…that’s a slice of silver lining peeking through a small rent in an otherwise black cloud. So a consultant with Pro Plus versions can create apps that leverage off PowerPivot and presumably PowerView, and their end users can use them no matter what license version.

        Better than nothing. End users probably won’t have the expertise to create/modify measures in general. Plus maybe it suits me that they cant…if they need changes, they HAVE to hire me back to implement them.

        1. Actually I think the Power View parts of the solutions would still require Pro Plus on the “consumer” desktop. But what you’re saying about PowerPivot is true.

        2. It’s a small slice, Jeff. My understanding matches with Rob’s here. Pro Plus = PowerView and full PowerPivot usage. Less than Pro Plus means PowerPivot consumption only, and no PowerView usage in any way shape or form. 🙁

          1. Ah well…on the down side lots of people are unhappy, and fewer are likely to have need for Rob’s book. On the upside, this frenzy of commenting will drive up Rob’s rankings in relation to PowerPivot on Google Search for the small fraction of people who will have access to this feature in future. 😉

          2. Jeff is right. This post added another 15% to site traffic yesterday alone, and is already by far the most-commented post in site history. I’d happily give back the traffic though in an eyeblink if we could get the real problem fixed by MS.

  17. I share the emotions, it’s going to be a big lose for MS. I work with a lot of smaller clients and I have been championing the use of PowerPivot. At the same time, I have been asking them to hold back on Excel 2013 for the same (even though they are really interested in the PowerView feature, but just cant afford the expensive versions for all of their analysts)

  18. Well, for me it is very simple. Right now, the only thing that makes me want Excel 2013 is Power View. If it becomes available in a reasonably priced, reasonably accessible version of Excel, I buy. It it does not, I don’t.

  19. Do not buy Office 2013

    Dear Microsoft,

    I do not want to use your latest Office package, which unfortunately I have already paid for.
    In connection with the launch of Office 2010 you promoted PowerPivot in a very large degree. The same is also true with Office 2013, now with both PowerPivot and Power View, but unfortunately you do not tell us that we can not buy an office package that includes these additions to Excel, it is only companys that can buy Office Pro Plus.
    So I keep Office 2010 on my home computer, it will give me the opportunity to work at home and to improve my skills in excel. But you are welcome to take my version of Office 2013 back again, it does not work properly.
    Best regards

    1. I just got my refund for Office 2013 which I purchased directly from the MS website. Try this number (855) 697-6545. I got transfered to alot of departments but I was finally given this number and got my refund back to my Paypal account the same day.

  20. Is this is akin to giving away a product for free, crushing any existing or emerging competition, and later charging for it (by building in dependencies to higher price models)? 🙂

    I am not surprised. I can’t change the desktop background on my netbook running win7 starter and the snipit tool was not included !

  21. This is just the latest in a pattern of disasters for MS.
    First the schizophrenic Windows 8

    Dramatic price increases in Office 2013 (reducing the number of install in addition to price increases)

    God Awful, too bright, horrible Office 2013 interface.

    Remove Powerpivot from Excel and put it out of reach for the end user.

    and on and on……

    What’s next? Don’t worry, the minds at MS (you know, the same ones that took the delete menu item out of explorer in W7, took out the start button from W8) are hard at work NOT thinking how to put out products folks would want, but how to get the most money out of business customers.

    Fair game, it’s their option. But in the end, like most decisions MS is making in the last few years, will prove shortsighted IMHO. (just look at Surface, windows phone, etc). (Oh and BTW MS, no number of product placements on TV shows makes me buy an inferior product)

    All this leads to what I call the Vista syndrome. Stick with Office 2010 till somebody with customer brains gets hired at MS. (Firing the guy who created W8 isn’t enough, but it’s a start). Or just stay with 2010. Frankly, outside of Excel, there really is NO reason (and many reasons NOT) to upgrade.

    Let’s be honest here, MS is pulling a Google. Google figured out that it’s cash cow Adwords was making money from a few heavy advertisers and most of the problems came from the end user. The “Google Slap” was born.

    MS is doing the same. Forget the end user (push them to renting the software) and focus on the VLA business user.

    In the end, MS marketing skills make it “unliked” by it’s customers. Apple on the other hand has customers evangelizing and defending their products. That pretty much says it all.

    So go ahead MS, keep doing what your doing. The end results won’t be pretty.
    (are they really reading this? I doubt it, they have another meeting to go to on how to phase out the end user and get more revenue from businesses.)

    1. First time I have ever seen MS accused of “pulling a Google.” That in itself is a positive reversal of fortune for MS! Hmm. I think. I’m very conflicted at the moment.

      PowerPivot is a beautiful, beautiful thing. And as a former MS employee, I can say that it (and Excel actually) are “apex” examples of things that truly only MS can create. I love my iPhone, I think Apple is better at consumer tech, but Apple would NEVER be able to produce a product like PowerPivot. Not in a million years. It’s a different company “personality” required.

      As I said to David Hager above, we need to be careful to remember that MS is not one uniform, unified entity. Far from it. Tens of thousands of engineers alone! And, compared to virtually any other company its size, MS is incredibly decentralized – by design! Individuals are still incredibly empowered to make decisions there, and the cultures also vary dramatically. Windows, Office, SQL – these places might as well be different worlds. That is, of course, part of the problem here. But Win8 and Excel/PowerPivot come from such different places and people, they have about as much genetic commonality as porpoises and chimps.

      -Typed on one of my computers that is still running Vista 🙂

    2. BTW Al nothing I said is meant as disagreement to your comments. In fact I find myself nodding a lot as I read what you wrote. You “get it,” so please just think of my response as “seasoning.”

  22. Bad, bad, bad idea. Bad Microsoft, no cookie. This post is at least timely. With the MS MVP Summit coming up next week perhaps we can make it abundantly clear that this was a bad idea.

    It’s actually a step backwards if user’s can download and add it in themselves.


  23. You make a supposition in this post that I’m not at all clear is true, or, I should say, will be true. Microsoft may not win the BI “war” after all.

  24. There is one thing I do not fully understand, where is the advantage for MS when companies buy a volume licence instead of a retail licence? Ìs there a price difference in the same way as standard/professional?

    1. No, even small companies may actually get their software cheaper when buying through a volume licensing contract. As in any other business, it is cheaper by the dozen. The goal is to increase customer loyalty, and smoothens cash flow.

    1. Ralph, you DO realize that not everybody is a “Microsoft Partner with the Action Pack” right? In fact, I would venture a wild guess that most users of Excel indeed NOT Microsoft Partners (nor have a need, desire, or financial justification to become one)

      Hopefully this clears it right up for you.

  25. Thank you for this article (and also for your amazing DAX book).

    Here is my vote: “pulling PowerPivot and Power View from retail SKUs of Office 2013 was a bad idea”

  26. Microsoft Oxymoron collection:
    1st Microsoft “Works” – for those who remember this product.
    2nd Microsoft PowerPivot: “Bring self-service business intelligence to everyone”

  27. BAD Idea, this is a feature set that we were really looking forward to. This is part of the integration promise that MS could get right. Do it right, drive more BI and cement MS into a leadership role by not needing to use the other BI tools sets on the market.

  28. Al, somebody wrote that you need to order just 5 copies to get Pro+. If it’s correct, then all you have to do is to find 4 other guys (just in this thread I can see you can find much more) and buy 5 copies.

    1. Well, I am pretty certain this will not work with a bunch of 5 random people. 🙂 I just meant that, contrary to my initial fears, even small companies might have access to Pro Plus, if they are ready to pay the additional price. Please do not take my word for granted.

    2. You need a minimum of 5 copies to enter into a volume licensing agreement with Microsoft, which will enable you to buy the Office ProPlus SKU. It needs to be under one name. I’m not sure how your Microsoft Partner would look at it if they found out that it was 5 people that were not connected by a business though…

      1. The “5 licenses” required to qualify for a volume license do not have to all be the same, ie Excel or Office. They include Windows and some really cheap (ie US$10) “crapware” that you could buy and throw away just to qualify.

        ALSO, everyone seems to be forgetting that PowerPivot is also part of STANDALONE Excel 2013. It is only US$110 from MS, or US$100 from Amazon (in link provided by powerpivot pro in another article)

        So a “realistic” alternative is be foolish enough to “rent” any Office 365 subscription (starting at US$100 per year) and one-time pay an Additional US$110 for PowerPivot via standalone Excel.

  29. If there is no PowerPivot in Office 2013, Office 2013 will not be installed in our company…We love PowerPivot! Can’t live without it. We’re a small company – only five users using it, but it’s for critical evaluations.

  30. Consumers don’t know the difference between Excel and Excel. They know the difference between Excel and Google Spreadsheet. I think it might be a good idea to make Excel more powerful rather than less powerful.

  31. Really bad idea! I’ve been using PowerPivot in Excel 2010 and was ready to purchase Office 365 Home Premium. Guess I’ll skip the upgrade and stay with Office 2010.

    On a side note, I wonder how many presenters this will affect? There are a lot of people who build presentations for events like SQL Saturdays, etc that do so on their own time, budget and hardware/software. These people promote MS software and capabilities at no charge to MS and now they have to say “If you want this feature, don’t upgrade unless you plan to purchase the Pro Plus version.” If it stays this way we could see people sticking with Office 2010 for the same lengths of time they stayed with Office 2003. With Office 2003 people didn’t want to upgrade and have to learn the new ribbon interface. With Office 2010 they won’t upgrade because they use features that were heavily promoted, not to mention free, and don’t want to lose them.

    1. It won’t break the SQL BI presenters. The MSDN subscription license (which most BI developers would have, either paid themselves or through work) comes with these pro plus features.

      Certainly the availability of the feature set will start showing up in talks, I have slides for this in my SQL Saturday talk here in Vancouver.

  32. Great marketing move to push the audience to a subscription on the O365! but, would the audience take it the right way? (according to the people posting before me it doesn’t seem like it and I feel the same way)

  33. Really bad idea. I understand the current model of offering PowerPivot for free but only offering all the features (e.g. scheduled refresh) in the server product. But not having PowerPivot at all doesn’t make sense.

    I was hoping PowerPivot adoption would grow massively with the introduction of Excel 2013 but I doubt that will happen now. This also makes me think twice about promoting it within my company.

    Oh and I for one do use the XML features btw 🙂

  34. Rob (and more importantly Microsoft).. This is plain crazy. So what you’re saying is to compete with the free desktop version of, say, QlikView, you’re going to make people buy Pro-Plus SKUs? And what’s more, make those SKUs nearly impossible to purchase outside of an enterprise agreement. Nice one 🙂

  35. How can we trust MS any more? Are you going to get Pivottable out of the standard too? Or perhapse they will take Vba out too.? You gave it for free in 2010 and now you don’t even let us buy it????? What a crazy idea!

  36. Hey Guys,

    keep cool. I think in comparison with Oracle or other “BI”-Vendors is Microsoft very favorably – with “Pro Plus” too.

    Can you imagine that Ellison has to give away something for free? Or Dietmar Hopp from SAP? No, me neither. So why do we allow ourselves to be able to dictate prices (btw. models) Microsoft?

    Possibly, because we will not be so disregarded, as in the “enterprise” business?!

  37. Rob, great post as usual, but I was a day late in reading this. Just got the MS Office Std 2013 (Corporate) installed and started googling how to enable PP and found your post. Really disappointed at MS for doing this. Will they ever learn from their mistakes? The coming years are going to be challenging for MS with decreasing desktop sales. Keep doing this maybe google will catch up with them.
    Can you start a survey to record this rant? I am curious to see if even one person is on the other side.

  38. Just a really bad idea. I am a financial consultant not a BI guy for a single company. I have spent a good deal of the time learning the tool on the assumption that it would become more widespread, not less. At best this is a sideways move. I will have to stay on 2010 or at least hope that my firm can be convinced to buy some lisences under the pro SKU.

    Thanks for the update Rob and the book is excellent so far (read Mr excel, Ferrari, so far and this is the best one to date).

  39. I just can’t get over how hilariously inept these clowns are. I’m just trying to imagine the dialogue in Remond.

    dude 1: “Yeah. I think we should change how we sell power pivot. Sure, this idea of giving away the razors and selling the blades sounds great and all and it’s allowing us to compete with more expensive dedicated tools because we have ubiquitous software on every desktop, but we should really be getting some revenue through Office.”

    dude 2: “But. How would we do that?”

    dude 1: “Simple. We muddy the entire pricing model with dozens of skus and unintelligible explanations of the differences. We’ll also market the crap out of power pivot integration out-of-the-box and at no point tell the consumer that they won’t get it unless they buy something top tier that probably won’t even be available to the average consumer anyhow. It’ll be an awesome trick. Our consumers will love it and not be pissed off at us at all because they expect it: they know who they’re dealing with.”

    dude 2: “More skus? But we already have like 4 different packages for 365 and a half dozen different version of office plus a bunch of pricing options that nobody can figure out anyhow”

    dude 1: “Yes. More versions. The win 7 guys did that and it was a huge hit. Consumers love more versions, especially if we make them feel like they’re playing roulette at point of sale”

    1. Or it could be more a case of:

      Chief dude/dudette: “I’m the xxxx manager, I have the authority for this product. I’ve got cast-iron directives from the strategic board to pull X% additional revenue out of this product offering as if I’m David Blaine pulling rabbits out of a hat – Global Financial Crisis or not . I don’t have a hell of a lot of levers to pull. So troops, this is what I want done. I know you don’t like it, but I don’t want to hear endless argument about it. My hands are effectively tied, and my decision is effectively made for me. No point arguing with the machine”.

      Lessor mortals: [Talking quietly amongst themselves] “Well, users ain’t gonna like it. Hell, I don’t like it. But no point arguing with the Chief.”

      If MS had not given us PowerPivot for free in the first place, then instead of this blog title being “Who moved the cheese” it would probably be “Do you want fries with that?” I think that letting the PowerPivot genie out of the bottle for free may well have been a far worse decision for them in hindsight than this one. With powerpivot, I think the innovation is incredible. It seemed just too good to be true that they gave it away for free with 2010. I would have paid for functionality like this. But of course, after they stuffed up their opportunity to frame the value of PowerPIvot by giving it away for free, now I don’t want to pay. And given my recently raised expectations of what Excel could do almost out of the box, this current attempt to re-litigate that decision seems pretty darn crude. Especially given that just a few months ago Rob, Ken, and others were so heartily (and rightfully) championing that the best thing about Excel 2013 was the fact that PowerPivot and Powerview were going to be ‘baked in’.

      That said, I think phrases like whether or not MS are going to ‘…win the BI war’ ignore are slightly jingoistic. We could just as well criticize Tableau for ‘losing the BI war’ by setting their pricing too high.

      Microsoft’s benchmark of success is not to increase the penetration/uptake/market share of every aspect of every product for the sake of it. Rather, Its the same as practically any other company: ‘Provide maximum value to shareholders, allowing for the niceties of our mission statement/corporate slogans where we can’. How they attempt do that is via a combination of innovation and pricing strategy (including pricing innovation). With a heck of a lot of uncertainty, politics, and crystal ball-gazing (sometimes very BAD crystal ball gazing) thrown into the mix do doubt. Innovation, customer value, and market share are things to be optimized against sustainable shareholder value. None of these things are the end game.

      1. I think part of the issue here is not if it was smart or not to give away powerpivot in 2010. It’s moot at this point. Many of us would be willing to pay extra at this point for the add in. The issue is that it’s been effectively taken away by making it prohibitive if not impossible to get. THIS is the issue IMHO.

        Why not put a price on it and sell it? I would venture a guess that the net bottom line would be higher with it. While pissing customers off (end users that is) is irrelevant to MS, what would it hurt them to sell it as a premium AND gain some goodwill?

      2. —-
        And given my recently raised expectations of what Excel could do almost out of the box, this current attempt to re-litigate that decision seems pretty darn crude. Especially given that just a few months ago Rob, Ken, and others were so heartily (and rightfully) championing that the best thing about Excel 2013 was the fact that PowerPivot and Powerview were going to be ‘baked in’.

        Which kind of makes me wonder how much thought was really put into the decision in the first place. I don’t think I read a single 2013 preview that made mention of the fact that the feature was tied to a specific version, I don’t think the marketing made a clear statement about it, and I would interpret Rob’s post as maybe he was even surprised by this.

        And don’t get me wrong: As much of an abortion as this seems like: I get that this that they’re trying to pull a little more cash out of this. But, look around at the rest of the ‘bi war’. Tableau, Qlik, zoho are all offering freebie ‘entry level’ products. And how long before google does something like Power Pivot inside their docs product?

        1. Absolutely agree MS’ messaging and strategic thinking seem pretty much lacking on this.

          I’d say Tableau Public is a demo, not a freebie entry level product, given your data is public. Whereas PowerPivot with Excel 2010 is (was) truly a freemium product in the same class as SQL Server Express is…it can be used straight away for commercial analysis completely confidentially.

  40. Finally we’re seeing a major pickup of PowerPivot and then Microsoft is making this decision?!?
    Not a good idea. Sign me up for the petition Rob!

  41. I want to use this opportunity to talk about documentation. PowerPivot started as a free product, but despite that had incredible documentation. It is really incredible compared to normal Microsoft documentation. As a comparison, look at the Excel 2013 VBA documentation.

    The Excel 2013 developer site was set up on July 16, 2012.

    At this site, there resides the Object model VBA programming language. All of the new objects, properties and methods are listed. And, there are ZERO CODE EXAMPLES that have been added since it was created. Since Microsoft is now selling this product, you would think that it is about time to show people that might be interested some examples of how to effectively use the new objects, properties and methods, especially for the new Model object.

    It’s sort of like buying a fully-loaded Mercedes-Benz that comes with no owners manual.

    Thank goodness that the Mercedes-Benz that is PowerPivot comes with an owners manual bible. Here’s hoping that EVERYONE can continue to experience its evolution, and learn from the fabulous online documentation.

  42. Unbelievable. I now know how every Star Wars fan felt after watching Episode 1. Last week, I went back to the Excel I like. I re-installed Excel 2010 and that is what I will be using for now on.

    1. I just returned from visiting the local Microsoft Store and tried there to install the Excel 2010 PowerPivot add-in in to a 64bit Surface Professional Pro running Windows 8 and Office 2013 and confirmed that it will not install and of course there is no Office 2013 PivotPivot add-in and the store does not carry Office 2013 Professional Plus. As I said before,. this does not stop me from using Office 2013 with PowerPivot because I have Office 2013 Professional Plus with my Microsoft Partner Action Pack and even without it I can use Office 2010 Professional on my desktop for development and put the production applications on PowerStream or Office365 (in the cloud) where the current PowerPivot version of Office 2013 resides (Office 365 has a 10MB file size limitation if running with Office Web Apps on its SharePoint server) and it is my understanding that PowerStream has a 500MB file size limitation for PowerPivot files running in their Cloud SharePoint server. If any of this understanding is incorrect please let me know. As far as I am concerned my firm is going forward with PowerPivot.

  43. We were working on 3 projects last year with powerpivot.
    In each project the guys from controlling were personally involved.
    They were excited to get control over the models.
    They were excited to work with the models at home and share
    their knowledge in business and privat environment.

    1 customer opted for sql 2012 and sharepoint.
    2 customer opted for sql 2012.

    It seems MS did not get the story. And we will see VLOOKUP for years and years.

  44. I was very excited about powerpivot when it came out for excel 2010. We used it on multiple projects at work, but as noted by others above, I won’t be able to recommend this product to most of our clients because they are smaller businesses. I agree, this is a bad idea! This is a huge knock against MS in the BI race.

  45. Well, I look like a fool. I’ve been telling people PowerPivot and Power View would be included in 2013 – I can’t believe ms pulled this stunt!

  46. We saw the light when Excel VBA was not supported in SharePoint or Office365, asked our Microsoft reps and they said there were no known future plans to support VBA in either, that we should start to future-proof our reporting. We had recently paid a lot of $$$ for our Microsoft BI servers in SharePoint/SQL 2012, needed to justify eCals, ask our SharePoint admins to allow SSRS server, needed PowerPivot server, needed consulting time to get the complex beast set up, extra cost here, extra cost there. We just started using PerformancePoint and then heard rumors it might be sunset almost immediately after buying it. Our audience wanted mobile reporting, so we ask our Microsoft rep, get a futures story on mobile, a lame roadmap, and a referral to use a partner product (basically buy another server and rebuild/duplicate all your content for mobile). Our stand-alone desktop Excel PowerPivot reports were cumbersome to build. DAX has a steep learning curve that was glossed over the sales demos. It was taking us days to get anything done that wasn’t trivial or required any kind of time intelligence…so more consulting $$$ to learn DAX. When we learned that our VBA work was not “future-proof”, we chose to shop around.

    We chose to evaluate QlikView, Spotfire, LogiXML, and Tableau. During that process we found out just how far behind the analytic times we were in Microsoft BI and Excel-land. We ended up picking Tableau and have been really happy. It took us just a few hours to replicate and build better mash-up reports with time intelligence in Tableau that used to take us days in PowerPivot. We also had many more analytical capabilities than we ever had with Excel, PowerPivot, PerformancePoint or Power View. We ended up buying a couple Tableau desktops for report authors and use the FREE Tableau reader for widespread distribution of content. We were even able to use some of our existing PowerPivot data sources in Tableau. Recently we bought the server for our mobile tablet users and external vendor reporting. What we have now is a heck of a lot better than what we had before and ironically it is cheaper.

    Microsoft is already very far behind the other BI vendors and never was cheap. Microsoft seems out of touch with analyst reality. This debacle just reaffirms that we made the right decision when we did.

    1. The point of this discussion is the tactical error made by MS that will hold PowerPivot back in the short term. The relative merits of other products are irrelevant but since you started it allow me to retort!

      Tableau is AMAZING and is one of my favorite ways to consume PowerPivot workbooks but as a pure tool for pulling together a bunch of disparate data sources I don’t think it can compete. I agree that DAX isn’t easy but once you get over the hump it is absolutely worth the effort and is so much more powerful than the formula language in Tableau.

      Its clear you’ve got a solution now that works well but for those of us without the large scale corporate infrastructure and the massive budgets, PowerPivot enables us to do things effectively for ‘free’ that we couldn’t have believed prior to Excel 2010.

  47. Hi

    No one said any of this during office 2013 preview. I was lucky not to buy a copy of 2013, instead I used a free month for office 365 home and premium and then noticed that I was unable to install or use Powerpivot. I knew there was something wrong, but since I saw no comments here I had doubts I was doing something wrong.

    Today I will be cancelling the office 365 home and premium subscription, I will survive with office 2010. 3 license copy.

    1. Classic bait and switch with PowerPivot. This is about “forcing” purchase of the most expensive option…reminds me of “forcing” the most expensive version of SharePoint for Excel Services and BI. They did similar “forcing” with SSAS multidimensional only building Power View to work with Tabular “forcing” adoption until enough market pressure came to do the right thing for their customers. We are still waiting for DAXMD. I noticed Excel 2013 Power View still doesn’t work with our cubes during the Office 2013 trial. When we will be “forced” to the cloud if we don’t want it? The recurring cloud cost is much more expensive than the one time, we use it for 4 to 5 years cost. Also the lack of cloud VBA support will impact me. Thanks for starting a petition.

  48. If nothing else – MS have just made everything far too confusing. I couldn’t tell if just buying the stand alone Excel 2013 would include Powerpivot or not.

  49. Being a consultant in BI stream, I wouldn’t be advising my clients to upgrade anymore. Sticking with Office 2010 for the time being. Thanks for the heads up Rob.

  50. Tableau is cuddly and cute, but has some major weaknesses to be classified as a BI Tool. I was on the phone with a rep who could not replicate what I did in Powerpivot and MS Access

  51. Intresting. You build a powerpivot data model and then consume that data with Tableau? Sounds interesting and frightening at the same time

  52. The whole data discovery market of Qlik, Spotfire and Tableau wouldn’t exist if Microsoft made the right decisions for BI a long time ago. They are all good products filling Microsoft voids, there is no point in bashing them… Microsoft step it up, not back.

    1. True, the Data Model lets you join sheets instead of using VLOOKUP, and the regular pivot Table View As may help. But, without DAX, you are losing much of the ability to use non-standard calendars for real reporting.

  53. From Marco’s blog ( “The only way to get these full BI features is through a Microsoft Volume License Agreement or Office 365 service. If you are not included in a Microsoft Volume License Agreement, the only way to get a copy of Excel 2013 that has all PowerPivot and Power View features available is getting an Office 365 ProPlus subscription. This might disappoint those of you that are used to buying a single license that never expires.”

    The message with Office 2013 has been loud and clear all along; give Microsoft your credit card and sign up for the cloud. If they don’t get paid for SharePoint eCal or SQL Server Enterprise edition for PowerPivot and Power View, how will they pay the staff that builds and supports it now that it is stand-alone in Excel? I don’t like the decision but I do understand that Microsoft is not a charity.

  54. Rate of adoption in my company is driven by demand. I create demand by introducing desire able stuff. When senior management sees the desirable stuff they want it and that triggers adoption. The rate of adoption for PowerPivot is going to *plummet* with this choice.

  55. Bought Office 2010 Home & Business so I could use PowerPivot and upgrade to Office 2013 for nothing. Result: I lose the extra license I used for my laptop and I lose PowerPivot. Absolutely furious with MS, particularly since their dire help lines didn’t know anything about it being taken out and kept trying to get me to install it via COM addins.

    Come on Microsoft, listen to these voices. At least offer PowerPivot as a paid ‘expansion’ if you must but don’t just remove it. Really…

  56. Just cancelled and got a refund for Office 365 Home Premium. What is strange is when I did the trail version it had PowerPivot and Power View. Back to Office 2010 Professional and PowerPivot 2012. Thanks for a good article.

  57. This whole stupid chaos Microsoft is doing with their whole Office 2013 makes me very, very, very angry right now. Their licensing bulls*** with Office 2013 is horrible. First they lock the Office 2013 license to your hardware, if your pc dies, so does your Office 2013 license, forever, its gone. And now they remove their glory “BI for the masses” features from their “low end” Excel Versions. I’m not even going to start about the “thing” they call Windows 8 any further because it raises my blood pressure beyond any healthy levels. I hope the losses to Microsofts sales on Office 2013 and Windows 8 will be so significant to the point it begins to hurt badly. Microsoft has to learn what happens to their business if they think they can treat their customers this way. Shame on their current behaviour. This is absolutely inacceptable.

  58. Bloody hell!

    I come from the Excel side of BI. I have been using PowerPivot on all major projects since 2010, pretty much. Got lots of the books (Rob, the Italians/Chris Webb, Mr Excel, et al) – been really, really useful.

    I have been mostly using PowerPivot as an analytical and prototype tool to mash stuff, analyse and present results, but was hoping to use it operationally. I have been selling the concept of self service BI using this technology (ie kind of MS Excel+, with DAX).

    It is now going to be a bit embarrassing as I will have to retract and rethink – Qlikview (Mr Farmer, where are you?), Tableau, or wait for some common sense at MS?

  59. In my oppinion is this bad.
    This will be the slaying argument to not update our environment (at least the BI machines) to 2013 – if we can’t even view the PowerPivot dashboards we’ve made and distributed via Sharepoint.
    As I was just telling all my folks about this exciting feature in excel (for everyone), this would be an argument also for home users to stay on E2007 and E2010. Saves them some upgrade money also….

  60. Great. We have built a bunch of cool tools in PowerPivot in my organization. If upgrading to Office 2013 means losing these features (accounting would not even let us consider buying Pro Plus), then that means our users will stay on 2010. If MS doesn’t budge on this, then we may end up having to find another BI solution.

  61. Bad moves all around Microsoft. You had been doing so well and I honestly saw a changed Microsoft…for the better. However, something seems to have changed drastically for the worst in the last 6 months. Decisions like Office 2013 and the draconian change in licensing is an outrage, as well as the decision to not allow PowerPivot in the 2013 upgrades for people who helped you make your numbers for buying Office 2010 expecting to get a like for like upgrade to 2013. These are NOT positive changes! I for one, will NOT be upgrading to Office 2013 unless or until I see changes, i.e. more like Office 2010 licensing and capablities.

  62. The PowerPivot tools were the reason that I started using Excell again. If this feature will be too expensive to get, I won’t use it anymore.

  63. We have been moving in the direction of replacing our current BI solution with PowerPivot and I have been working on sample reports in order to make the case. However, the Excel 2013 news puts the breaks on this.

  64. This is an appalling decision by Microsoft. I have seen successful sell-ons of SSAS multidimensional, SSIS and Dynamics CRM online against compelling competitors from single user retail license PowerPivot projects in growing small businesses.

    These sell-ons simply wouldn’t have happened under the new licensing structure.

    Because of the very self-service nature and ease of use of PowerPivot it is a great foot in the door for the MS stack, especially when accompanied by some consulting time to help users over the hurdle of things like system vs user DSNs, advanced DAX calcs etc.

    Not a show stopper for enterprise customers or those willing to subscribe to Office 365, but definitely an unnecessary impediment for small business.

  65. Ironic that after having spent months trying to explain to management that the semantic modeling we embraced in SQL 2005 is gone, however this new thing called PowerPivot with Tabular Models is going to be so much better? First kick in the teeth relates to some of the best features (when used with SharePoint) requiring ENTERPRISE SharePoint (which we really can’t justify). Now you’re telling me the users will LOSE PowerPivot in an “upgrade” from Office 2010 to Office 2013? At TechEd the past couple of years I’m told PowerPivot should be my new RoadMap. I’ve been a long time MS fan and BI evangelist, but I’m growing tired of having to look like an idiot pitching new features from MS that suddenly evaporate.

  66. I am buying a Mac and I am gonna stay there this time. I’ll support any other office suite as long as it’s not MS, #%¤%¤%!!´<!

  67. It’s been a fairly easy sell to have our clients upgrade to Excel 2010 from previous versions by touting the advantage of our BI solution which uses PowerPivot. But now, this? REALLY? We all stand to lose and this is sad.

  68. could you please explain exactly, what’s left in the normal excel 2013, could we create relationships without the powerpivot ?

  69. If MS sticks to their decision, many users will not adopt Excel2013 and in 10 years I’ll remember Powerpivot as an old (not further developed) BI tool from MS.

  70. Very poor decision, bought 2010 with a free “Upgrade” to 2013 a few months back only to realize my upgrade lacked my favorite Excel add-it. Will ask for a refund!!!

  71. Rob,

    If this situation didn’t occur, how would you ever get this much traffic for a single post. LOL, I’m jealous 😀 On a more serious note, I can think of some reasons why Microsoft might have done this:

    During the Gemini release of PowerPivot, Don Farmer explained that the way they (Microsoft) hoped to monetize PowerPivot was by SharePoint Server Enterprise licenses. The expectation was that an office’s Excel “guru” would build models that would be published to a SharePoint server. It might be that up to the present, too many people distribute models around in Excel files, which is possible since there is no additional cost to anyone else in the organization (most of whom use Office Standard). Shipping the add-in with Pro Plus only would force the issue – the model developers would have to put their models in a central repository (SharePoint or SQL Server 2012 BI/Enterprise), since no organization would go through the expense of equipping users’ desktops with Pro Plus licenses. Incidentally, this approach favors companies like PivotStream, or any appropriate hosting service, since many organizations do not have the resources to invest in SharePoint Enterprise or SQL Server BI/Enterprise servers in-house. Besides, one cannot argue against the fact that model centralization is the best way to users to access PowerPivot models.

    Other possibility is that after a three-year free ride, which has allowed users to play with the add-in and provide valuable feedback to the development team, Microsoft now believes that the add-in is sufficiently mature to cash in on their investment.

    In my mind, we need to answer a couple of questions objectively:
    1) Why should the add-in remain free, given that everybody else charges for their respective solutions? Should Power View be free also? If so, why?
    2) Is Microsoft’s approach competitive with the rest of the market?

    I don’t claim to have answers to either question. I do think that there will be a lot pressure on the development team to deliver market beating functionality in subsequent releases. For all we know, PowerPivot V3 will have so much of the functionality currently available in AS multidimensional, that for the vast majority of cases, the selection of one over the other would be moot. If that be the case, there’s certainly no reason to continue giving the thing away, and the new Office licensing model prepares for that eventuality today.

    1. The answer is that they should not be free. Microsoft should package the PowerPivot and PowerView add-ins and sell them to those who buy “base” versions. However, this seems to be too simple of a solution, so it is unlikely to happen.

  72. Rob,

    I don’t know if you remember when we met a little over a year ago in Orlando. We both were doing PowerPivot presentations at the Orlando SQL Saturday. I’ve been promoting the cause of PowerPivot for the BI masses ever since and have done quite a few presentations emphasizing not only how great the tool was, but also the fact that it was free. When I first heard of the change in how it was being packaged in Office 2013 my first response was, “WTF? Are they insane?”.

    I get what you say, Rob, and it make sense I guess in a way from the Office team’s point of view. However, I am afraid that this could result in marginalizing PowerPivot. For example, when SharePoint 2010 beta came out, they announced the ability to move Access applications into SharePoint to provide better security, single source of the data and application forms, etc.all of the problems that make IT managers hate Access. It could have been a game-changer. But when SharePoint 2010 was finally released, they put this ability out of reach of most SharePoint installations by making it part of Enterprise probably for much of the same reasons as you describe here. As a result, almost no one uses this feature today.

    Anyway, I’m adding my comments to this ‘petition’ so that maybe Microsoft (or is that the Office team) reconsiders PowerPivot’s (and Power View’s) placement in the future of BI for the masses.

  73. Really poor decision by MS that will cost them customers and sales, both short and longer term.

    I had moved a major project to Tableau last year from PowerPivot. While Tableau is flashier and in some areas has greater capabilities than PowerPivot (graphics and publishing capabilities), Tableau is deficient in terms of the data manipulation and reformatting, and presentation of data via tables or charts once it is inside the platform. I have been ready to move back to PowerPivot for clients. This decision by MS changes my decision to use PowerPivot again. I would prefer to migrate back to PowerPivot, but MS predatory licensing and marketing scheme in Office 2013, especially relative to this change in PowerPivot availabilty, means I will not make the move back to PowerPivot or Office 2013.

  74. And here’s my tuppence-worth too. This is a mistake, and a serious one.

    My clients vary from one man micro-businesses through to some global players. The smallest will be unwilling/unable to pay out to use a BI system that started off free, the largest are rarely willing to pay for more than a standard version for the bulk of their users. This will make Microsoft BI of little interest to either group and, since they’re the ones who pay my consultancy fees, I can’t possibly point them in the direction of a BI which I know they will be unable to use within a few years unless they’re willing to pay additional consultancy fees further down the line for every new report that needs to be built.

    Unless there’s a sensible change in direction by Microsoft on this one then I will be advising that they use one of the Open Source solutions available to them, more than one of which allow for self-service BI.

    And I may sound like I’m just a single voice but like many others who’ve posted here I represent the tip of an iceberg; in my case it’s my client list, for others it will be the same and for the rest it’s their fellow employees. My point being that for every name above Microsoft should count tens, hundreds or even thousands who either won’t comment or are as yet unaware of this problem but will nevertheless not be using PowerPivot – in other words, this list is already well into the high thousands of users who will be affected, if not more.

    I guess it’s goodbye to PowerPivot as an alternative BI.

  75. This is clearly a bad idea. Power View on the desktop, and PowerPivot in general, are an opportunity for Microsoft to gain a huge market share- an opportunity they will miss with this move.

  76. This is realy disapointing, I have been putting a lot of effort in PowerPivot in Excel 2010 and feel like it has been useless (Professional Plus will not be an option for most of my clients)

  77. What a bad idea. I have been promoting PowerPivot saying that it is available for free for all users whether at office or home – this is going to really impact PowerPivot adoption. If all users can’t have PowerPivot in their Excel, it makes adoption very very difficult.

  78. Absolutely ridiculous — I’m a living example of why this is a bad idea. My wife does freelance consulting, and can really use Powerpivot, so I just upgraded her single license to the more expensive Office365 subscription that includes it.

    At the same time, though, I also went back to the agency where _I_ work, where we’ve got 15-20 people who are already on the “Outlook-only” version of Office365, and halted plans I had been making to move us all up to full Office version. I’ve gotten the entire office starting to use Powerpivot for reporting, analytics, etc., and getting us all onto 2013 seemed like a great idea. This pricing model, though, means we’d have to go from $5/user/mo to $25-30/user/month to upgrade. There’s no way I’m going to go back in right now and try to sell it back in at a higher price.

    In economics, there’s an idea called “complements” — outside products that encourage usage and purchase of _your_ product. The whole idea is that you want those secondary products to be as cheap as possible, so that they encourage — rather than inhibit — sales of your core product. Apps are complements to iPhones, and so Apple has always forced them to be priced really cheap. Powerpivot is a _huge_ complement in helping companies rely even more heavily on Excel. They shouldn’t be charging more for it, they should still be giving it away. (Or, if they were REALLY smart, give it away as for free, but promoting the crap out of it as a value-added bonus. “NOW, WITH POWERPIVOT!!!”)

    Joel Spolsky actually wrote a great essay on this topic, a while ago:

  79. Well, it’s been a while now since this thread started, and so far there has been no public comment by Microsoft on whether they are considering modifying their marketing strategy of Office 15. Whether they do or not is obviously entirely up to them, but it utter arrogance that no statement regarding this situation has come from their company to date. I watched the movie “The Pirates of Silicon Valley” and saw the business savvy that Biil Gates showed when starting up Microsoft. His ability to make the right business decisions (cutthroat or not) was why Microsoft became the company it did. It is unfortunate to see the depths that this company has fallen to in his absence. In summary, it is OK to be arrogant in the business world as long as you are making the right decisions, or elso you simply look foolish.

    1. Well may be the sight of the 2 dozen people in red Pivot T shirts in Redmond made them nervous and forced them to make a “private” comment about it to their MVP’s at the Summit…but its must be covered by a NDA…. so we have heard about it yet

  80. Gosta says:
    I downloaded the trail version of Office 2013 and was very happy with the new added VBA capability which makes automatic updating of the database possible without SharePoint. The trial period ended and I went to my local dealer and bought Office 2013 professional. You know what happened. I managed to to sell back the for me useless package. Microsoft you leave an open goal for competitors in the BI area. Good luck.

  81. MS is being very misleading… I’ve been using the Office 2013 home premium preview, which does have Power Pivot available. I’ve really just started getting into using Power Pivot, and now my trial period is about to end… Imagine my chagrin when I came across this article telling me that I am going to lose that functionality… BAD CALL MS. I had just gotten rid of all my MAC products and started a HUGE Excel evangelism campaign at my office and to everyone I meet. (I’m geeky that way…). Now I have egg on my face. This really has to change.

  82. How short sighted. I made a heavy PowerPivot BI push at my workplace over the last couple years. We’ve created spreadsheets for our distributors for use in analyzing and discussing their sales performance with us, and typically these operators are small businesses and will never be on Enterprise Licensing. To make things worse, I just discovered this issue today when trying to determine why my Office 365 installation at home no longer has PowerPivot – despite the fact the trial included this functionality. Occasionally I’ll work at home when I don’t have my office laptop with me, and I foolishly believed the shared settings, SkyDrive, etc. were designed to make desktop Office more portable, but removing PowerPivot from non-enterprise versions was a huge oversight and I wouldn’t be surprised to see usage, 2013 upgrades, or both decline due to removal of BI. This reminds me of when Access wasn’t available in the Standard version and I was willing to pay more to have it… unfortunately, MS doesn’t even offer that as an option and I don’t believe strong arming Small Business users into Enterprise versions will ultimately be successful. Before I attempt to rollback my Office 365 subscription, I’m really hoping we’ll see a solution supported by MS (or a back door option) because I need PowerPivot. I’m not prepared to buy an Enterprise license for home use and I’m certain our distributors will not purchase enterprise licenses to obtain an add-in that many outside of finance (and IT) understand it exists and its useful purpose.

  83. There is an international aspect to the PowerPivot issue that has not been addressed. Since the original versions were free, it is likely that many people around the world took advantage to learn this new technology. Now, because of their financial situation, they will not be able to continue to climb the learning curve and participate in the global “BI for the masses”. Microsoft has always stood for non-discrimination in their business practices, but that stance has apparently changed.When you first give something for free (like a drug), and then later charge for it, what have you become?

  84. Today is a terrible day for a Microsoft Dynamics NAV consultant as I am : on top of this news with PowerPivot, I learned that a feature that was present in a previous release of NAV was no longer available in the new one. What’s next ?

      1. The “Style Sheet Tool” allowing the user to create its own style sheet in order to merge rich and flexible metadata context together with ERP data.
        I know it was not a “supported” feature by the product team, but rather was developed by an Escalation Engineer, but it was made available for general use and in the same way as Power Pivot, customers have started using, liked it and adopted it and now that they want to upgrade, it is not there anymore…

  85. My problem is that I have been ‘selling’ it to my clients on false information. Microsoft changed the rules after I have already done a lot of work on learning it and selling it. Now I have to go back and redo the business case, both from my perspective and that of my clients. At this stage, sunk costs have to be written off in such evaluations.

    My two main issues are:
    -How do we treat MS releases of technologies in the future in terms of contractual certainty with MS (just started playing with data explorer, not sure whether i should now bother).
    – Like many here, I am a consultant to small business. They appear to longer be part of MS target market, so presumably we need to look elsewhere…would have been nice to know a bit in advance.

    Very disappointing,

    1. I agree Steve. I have been playing with Data Explorer for a while and can definitely see uses for it. However, I will not be recommending it until the pricing and licensing is fully announced, hopefully without the drip-feed approach of 2013. Even then, any recommendation will be highly caveated because MS cannot now be trusted. In the unlikely event that they revert on the 2013 licensing to a more affordable and less restrictive model, the damage is already done in that everyone is aware that MS either don’t really care about smaller businesses, or they just don’t get it, and thus they are just as likely to pull another stunt like this.

  86. without power pivot in Excel 2013, i might as well just use Pandas in Excel because regular pivot doesn’t cut it.

  87. ARE YOU KIDDING ME????? WHAT HAS MS DONE?? I am a small business owner and wanted the lastest version of office so i could upgrade the path for the other users in the office. BI is an area i wanted to invest the time to learn…..maybe i learned its time to get a refund

  88. Hello

    I am exploring what can be done with the non pro plus version and discover that I can’t even convert what was done with 2010 to the 2013 version… It seems you need the pro plus to convert…

    Really no care for the customer…

  89. I have a copy of Office 2010 from my company’s home user program. I use PowerPivot on my home PC for my MBA classes. Also, I have Office 2010 on my work computer. I had to make a special request to get PowerPivot installed onto my work machine. There is no turning back once you learn how to apply PowerPivot.

    Powerpivot missing from 2013 SKUs is the one reason I can’t upgrade to 2013 at home.

    1. “Home User Program” is a benefit from Software Assurance, which is an add-on to a Volume Licensing agreement. SA means your company can upgrade to the new version when they want.

      Ask in your company if you can get Pro+ installed on your PC and you should be able to use HUP to upgrade your home edition as well.

  90. Yet again MS are changing the goal posts in a way that will only really affect the small business and SME market. MS clearly do not care about organisations that are not large corporates or under 250 seats, just look at the way they price to see this.

    As tech director of this business, I have had enough of them changing the ways we can buy or use their software. As a small business with less than 25 seats, we do not have either the extensive time required to understand the constantly changing rules & licensing options in order to just use MS Office nor do we have the money available to be able to muck around upgrading every time MS say we have to. I preferred it when we could by a product with a physical package, install it on a machine and just use it, if the machine broke down or was upgraded, you simply re installed onto the new system, that was it.

    For years, we have been subjected to MS making rule changes which has ALWAYS resulted in them getting the benefits of the changes and us losing out completely. Every change, from no more upgrades to the lack of a physical disk with your software on it has meant MS make increased profits while we get to do nothing about it and just have to accept the loss.

    The lack of Power Pivot in 2013 is yet another loss where we are forced to eat dirt and cannot even negotiate with MS on the issue – so it is another nail in the coffin for Microsoft Office in this business I am afraid we will not be upgrading to 2013 here – at any time.

    The cost saved from upgrading this business to office 2013 will instead be spent on new hardware. When 2010 is no longer used, we will be using a Non-MS alternative instead.

    What’s most sad is that MS will not even care that they have lost yet another thriving and rapidly expanding small tech business from their client list. )-:

  91. This is scandalous. Powerpivot as a standard feature was the only reason I wanted to move to 2013. I bought it and cannot do the same things I was doing in 2010 for free. This is not an upgrade but a downgrade.

    Microsoft, honestly I feel let down by you. That’s not fair commercial practices !

    Now I have a license I can’t even use !

    1. Same happened to me, now I have a year Home Premium licence that I do not need at all without PowerPivot. I bought this license only cause I like new PowerPivot features on Preview version. And now I do not have a PowerPivot, do not have it as option and cannot buy it for my Office version. And its no upgrade and hard to buy Pro Plus it for 1 or few users use. Bad solution.

  92. It’s bad enough having the Windows and Mac versions of Office differing so wildly in performance and features, that it reflects dreadfully on MS marketing strategists to inflict multiple versions of Excel into a market that expects harmonisation.

    Email correspondence with MS on this issue is amusing, as they clearly get the problem but are reluctant to admit it causes a problem. Whilst it probably breaks the licensing terms, if I bring an excel sheet home from work, I expect it work regardless of which version I’m using. Taking whole products out of a package is fine, as one can buy or leave it without impact on the use/functionality of the other products.

    Of course, we could all be faling into a cleverly crafted MS trap to commoditise powerpivot and powerview as a £50 add on, but that would probably presume too much thought went into this decision.

    Keeping my fingers crossed that my home premium version of Excel will soon become useful again

  93. Like many others here, I upgraded from 2010 to 2013 with the expectation that PowerPivot was included. I bought the Professional SKU and was mislead by the MS website and the salesperson at MS. I contacted support and we all know how bad that can be holding for 2 hours. During the hold, I found on MS website that it was only bundled with the PLUS versions. It was sandwiched in between lines about how great PowerPivot is. Now I am forced to go to Open License and spend $2500 (5 users) for something that was $300 (per user) product.
    I called back to MS Office Sales team just to see, asked the man if PowerPivot was part of Office Professional his answer was yes and that was April 3, 2013. I called him a liar and told him to go ask his supervisor. He came back and told it wasn’t available to Professional, only Plus and gave me a price on upgrade.
    I feel like I have been baited and switched at the last minute with no place to turn. I like using the program and features and hope that MS will reconsider its plans. Can anyone from MS tell me the upside for the end user with a deal like this? If you are going in this direction, why didn’t you explain it better to us and MS salespeople?
    Thanks to all for letting me rant.

  94. I just wanted to add my voice saying that this sucks. Power Pivot in 2013 has been a big selling point for me.

  95. This is absolute madness.
    All of our clients are awaiting this and now the vast majority will not get it.

    Without PowerPivot, what reason is there to upgrade to Office 2013?
    This will turn Office 2013 into another Vista.

    Ha! ha! (in Nelson’s voice).

  96. Hi there,

    I have purchased office 2010 (office home and business 2010) which came with a free upgrade option to scale it to 2013 (office home and business 2013) – since I have been an intensive user of PowerPivot and the only reason I’d have gone to 2013 was to enjoy using a built-in powerpivot and powerview — but to my surprise, both of these features are not provided with this specific version of office 2013!!

    I am so not happy with the installation and would like to go back (downgrade) to office 2010 (without spending an extra dime) so that I can continue to enjoy using powerpivot at the least (without any problems).

    I must add that this is a completely new machine that I have bought with no prior OS running — the current OS is Win8 Pro.

    Your help would be very highly appreciated!


  97. We need powerpivot in our small business company because we didn’t have the money to buy a heavy BI software.

    Please bring Powerpivot on Office 2013 Small Business Version

    This really sucks!

  98. I really can,t understand this. i felt so stupid after urging my IT team to finally put my long expected new laptop with win 8 and office 2013 just to benefit from powerpivot.
    No clear and honest information about it upfront. i discovc
    I’m switching h back to win7 and excel 2010.
    I’ve been a fan of MS just because they manage to make EXCEL a magic.
    I’nve champonned it in my sucessive jobs and compniesl.
    I think MS is sadly loosing a genuine advantage on all office suite out there.
    If it is a question of money : allow us to purchase it as an addin.

  99. I have to pipe in here as well. I’m a super user and just got a new, more powerful computer which include ‘MS Office Professional’. I was incredibly disappointed to discover that this level of MS Office did not come with POWERPIVOT. Dumbfounded really. I am now trying to explain to our IT guy how it is that the PROFESSIONAL version is not enough to meet my needs. What a dumb and alienating move on the part of Microsoft.

  100. Sucks Big Time! Microsoft is clueless about the consumer, no wonder Apple, Google, and just about everything that is not Windows/Office are kicking their windowed butt!

  101. I am a big supporter and evangelist of the MS BI direction with PowerPivot. Now with this move to remove the capability to download for 2013, I am at a loss to explain to my audience why they will need to invest in a more expensive solution. I am also an evangelist of MS Windows 8, Surface and OFFICE 365 but again I will need to tell folks to pay a much larger amount in order to get the PowerPivot piece…..this is crazy! Office folks are making a bad decision for themselves and MS in general.

    1. Totally agree. So far Mike this might be the comment that is most “aligned” with my own take on this issue.

  102. Totally agree!
    I’m working as an instructor, and this is sorely missed in my courses ;((. I will advise my customers to keep using Office 2010 …..

  103. Microsoft has pulled the trigger far too early! So many people were totally happy to get a tool like PowerPivot at hand and were starting to believe in the Microsoft BI way of life. I hope they don’t crash a possible boom with their “strategy”.

  104. I am ridiculously disappointed. I’m not even sure how this ‘relationships’ thing works… I don’t know how to even update the “powerpivot” table in 2013 because I don’t have Powerpivot. Horribly disappointing and frustrating…

  105. This was a bad idea. My company was looking at upgrading to Office 2013, but when I tell them that they will have to get a special version for every machine in order to handle the features that I promulgate throughout the company, it will be a no go.

  106. I love the fact that a local college provided an Excel 2013 course in which over 300 students signed up. The got to the part where they were going to teach the students how to use PowerView except that the 1 year purchase of Office 365 Home Premium Subscription was required for the class. So here we are on this day and they cannot teach half of the course, the college ended up having to refund all students their money plus compensate for the 1 year subscription service to Office 365. Let’s just say the powers that be were not happy.

  107. After learning the hard way that 2013 doesn’t come with power pivot, and that even had I figured out the magical SKU that did come with it that I wouldn’t be able to share workbooks with coworkers and consultants using 2010, I’ve advised my 500 person company not to upgrade to 2013. It’s too bad, I actually thought excel 2013 was an improvement, I just can’t use it for work.

  108. how can a microsoft cheat with us, i was using excel 2010, and upgrade to excel 2013 without knowing that powerpivot is not present in this version, this was one of my big mistake , i again transfered to excel 2010, microsoft has cheated me

  109. Well, what can I say. I just signed an Office 365 Home subscription to try out PowerPivot and PowerView, after getting excited about it seeing MS presentations and videos about them. Was pretty dumbfounded when they weren’t there. Luckily, it is a one month’s trial subscription, which I will now cancel. And saying I’m disappointed and annoyed is too mild…but at least I did not loose any Money, just built up some badwill againt MS…

  110. Very sad to see this change! I wouldn’t mind if I had to buy a license of Pro Plus for myself but I can’t tell every customer to do the same. PowerPivot was once a great thing – was…

  111. I am a director of financial analysis for financial product company. I oversee a large group of excel pros/financial analysts. I have spent a substantial amount of time investigating Microsoft BI (Power pivot and pivot stream teamed). To continue my research and education, I went so far as to purchase an new computer and installed Office Pro with my own funds. Here I sit.

    The main reason I even considered the idea is the fact that I have a second computer at work using Excel 2010. Microsoft is shooting themselves in the foot by limiting access this way. They are losing one of the best forms of advertising available. Many IT departments (ours included) are very anti-Microsoft, but when I was able to show them some examples of the work I did in 2010 with power pivot, they were really coming around to my idea.

    Does anyone know how to downgrade to 2010?

  112. Jul 25: One day after you, here I am, too, wondering how can I downgrade back to 2010, which I uninstalled to make sure my 2013 had no hiccups (as it was having when I first tried the install). Where the hell is my Powerpivot.

  113. Rick and Maria – I just screenshotted your comments and sent them to my friends at Microsoft. You are now famous in Redmond 🙂

  114. Time for a change directed by the Board of Directors. There are so many faults in the corporate management as seen through both the Windows 8 debacle for the corporate world and the army of developers in financial analysis which is shown on this thread that you have to say it is time for a change at the top. Been there too long and the sad tail of the share price over the last ten years- flat – shows need for new management. Balmer has done all he can – time for new management. Execution of dumb ideas is still execution. Dumb ideas are dumb ideas. Guys been there too long.

    New management who will realize that is the outside developers with new idea are the future. These people who like or love the best of Excel who want to continue developing and installing it in organizations and at home. They are the organizations best hope. See what they are doing and work with them to make “it” available to everyone. “Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried, Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel;”

    To follow Shakespeare with a modern colloquial expression: “Don’t screw them over”!

  115. So 2 months ago i quit my job as a controller within a logistics company cause a different company recruited me. I have used powerpivot during all my time there. Now i find myself wanting to use powerpivot in my new company and build up a BI structure from scratch with Powerpivot as one of the focal points. So i bought Office Professionel for my own money and installed it on my private computer to become better with powerpivot so i could get a good start at my new company. So i bought the 2013 version and to my surprise, no powerpivot…
    I wrote an angry email to MS not expecting any solution or positive answer. (still pending at this time)

    What i cant understand is that people who truely commit to powerpivot will want to learn every part of powerpivot to utilize its full potentiel. Learning money in my country are often spent at home taking a case with you from work to create a viable solution that you bring to work the next day/week.

    I cant even buy a standalone excel or ask my job to supply one cause they only put powerpivot into BULK licensing.

    Its just dumb, plain and simple. You create a program that has so much potentiel and with proper accessibility in the community the controllers/analysts/BI developers can really help MS move it forward to make powerpivot a prefered tool in the BI world.

    To make it clear i will not be using powerpivot in the future as the route MS is taking scares me that MS OFFICE in the future wont even hold Powerpivot and it will be a standalone product that you need to buy under special licensing terms. I cant sell this to a company in the future as i specialize in building BI solutions in small/medium companies that are not ready to a fullblown BI solution.

  116. The “Piracy” company’s are going to do big business selling ProPlus for $30 a hit at our computer swap meets in Australia, thats for sure and certain.

  117. The world has advanced to an incredible in the last 20 years largely because individuals and small companies with good ideas have had access to tools that enable them to make the most of brilliance (Microsoft is probably the best example). This decision shows that MS have changed since those days and now keep the important features restricted for the exclusive use of the big end of town. How shameful. How wrong.

  118. I just left a 750 license organization that was moving to Power Pivot in place of an unwieldy, massive BI application. With regards to Office 2013, Power Pivot just went from a powerful sales tool to an obstacle. Oh well, if we can’t get cool features we can always use Open Office….

  119. I work for a nursery that specializes in native perennial propagation. Last week I just discovered PowerPivot in Excel 2010 via Chandoo and have been zinging in hyper drive thinking of all of the possibilities. For us, having this tool is a game changer.

    It is unfortunate that MS can’t see the forest through the trees on this one moving forward. At a time when the economy is still on shaky ground, this is the kind of tool small business need to help advance their productivity and profit and in turn help continue to drive us onto stable ground.

    I’ll make sure our IT folks stick with Win7+Office 2010 until MS resolve this behemoth of a debacle. Maybe they will hit their head on one of those trees and knock some common sense back into their collective brains.

    This information will not keep me from trying to get our GM to approve taking Chandoo’s upcoming courses.

    Thanks for the information.


  120. Rob, good analysis, thank you. This clearly explains why PowerPivot is not on my 2013 as I thought. At first I thought it was just me!. MS, bad idea and this approach will spoil your penetration into a community that trusts features and functions implied to be supplied.

  121. I work at a training center and teach PowerPivot classes. Most of my students don’t have any control over the edition of Office that is installed on their systems, which makes the removal of PowerPivot from most editions very frustrating. Why should they attend classes and learn a feature if it won’t be available to them?

    Plus, it’s the average end user that needs this type of data. That’s what was so exciting about PowerPivot … putting the power of BI on the desktop for all to use was kind of the point. This is definitely a step backwards.

  122. What a disappointment! We will not be moving to Office 2013 now. This is such a big loss for Office. PowerPivot has completely changed the way I work with data. I can’t imagine not having it.

  123. Rick said :
    “Many IT departments (ours included) are very anti-Microsoft”

    I believe that this thread has gone on long enough (nearly 6 months). It is obvious that “Microsoft” is anti-Microsoft. There can be no other explanation for their thoughtless actions. Also, those that know the “true” reasons for Microsoft’s actions in this regard are doing everyone a disservice by keeping quiet on their “strategy”. An endless string of unhappy people talking about this has had and will have no impact on anything Microsoft does.

    The laughable part of this is that the people that work at Microsoft think they are smart. Sure, they can create incredible technology, but then what?

    The bottom line is: just pay any blood money Microsoft wants from you if you want to continue to use their BI tools. I will, just because I think they are cool and powerful. As far as Microsoft’s business vision is concerned, I think they have been looking through Google Glasses.

    1. I agree with you. The products are frikken outstanding. The business is awful. there has been so much dumped into the marketplace recently, it’s overwhelming and it’s tough to know what’s really needed. Power View doesn’t work with all the too-many versions of SharePoint.

      In spite of all the craziness, Excel reigns supreme. I have a client who’s paid me $350 to build an app in Excel that she could buy for $40 as a stand-alone app. In Excel we get flexibility and clarity. We ditch the confusing back-end configuration of the existing app, and the extra features that only got in her way.

      Great products … if only Microsoft would get out of the way.

  124. I have had trouble getting Office 2013 for my laptop while maintaining Office 2010 on the desktop for continuity purposes. I will now stop pursuing Office 2013. This looks like the apex for microsoft Office and an opportunity for the next dominant office software package to emerge. We were sorry to lose Lotus 123 but the attraction of compatible DB,Spreadsheet and Word processor with recordable macros was too strong and became standard for every machine. VBA, Powerpivot, Access and SQL server were compelling tools for those who develop with them and share applications with those who use them without concern for how they worked(which often competed with the IT department).However, many more IT applications got off the ground because the prototype on Office got too big.

  125. I agree. I purchased Office 365 Home Premium and was so disappointed to find out Excel 2013 in that version does not allow the user to access PowerPivot of GeoFlow. I posted this complaint to Microsoft.

  126. When 2013 came out I bought 365 Home Premium. That’s all I needed. And then I saw PowerPivot and Power View tutorials … OMG!

    And then I discovered that I had neither. Ok. So, I’ll just upgrade to ProPlus. NOT SO EASY! It took 4 days and 16 Microsoft techs to get me upgraded. I was transferred to wrong departments, and then the right people in the right department weren’t familiar with the online interface.

    That was a painful 4 days of trying to give a company my money.

    1. You actually got upgraded? Didnt think it was possible. Im my country pro plus is not even an option. How much did you have to pay.

      1. Yup! I was able to upgrade. I’m paying $7/mo in addition to the $99 for the 1-yr subscription to Office 365 Home Premium.

        Now here’s some more confusion. This article came out 8JUL and it suggests that PowerPivot Power View, Power Map (GeoFlow) and Power Inquiry (Data Explorer) are now available with all Office 365. There’s no explicit statement about that. There’s also no explicit statement that ProPlus is required.

  127. This is an utterly stupid decision by Microsoft!

    As others have said, we’ll stick with 2010 until Microsoft comes to their senses.

  128. Oh-oh, just upgraded several users from 2010 to 2013 not realising this pending disaster. What were they thinking ???
    I guess we’ll be going back to 2010.

  129. Yep going back to 2010, all the new servers on order will be put back to Office 2010. \We will scrap the few Office 2013 versions we have. How stupid can MS be !

  130. Verdaderamente es la peor estupidez de mercadotecnia que he vistooo!! Tenía todo para salir como los Dioses y lo echaron todo a perder.. Yo estoy comprando licencias Offices 2013 standar argumentando estas nuevas opciones de Pivot y View, no es posible….! Ahora tengo que trabajar con licencias 2013 pero usando 2010 con el powerpivot.

    Una ves más MS demuestra que por su hambre de querer robar el mercado da un paso atrás.

  131. I can’t imagine we Power Pivot Professionals are going to be too keen on recommending to our clients that they purchase Excel 2013 Standard.

  132. Well, thanks Microsoft. Had to reinstall Windows 7 due to stupid Win7 crashing software, lost my Office 2010 (my bad) so decided, hey, let’s upgrade to Office 2013 (Home & Student) , reinstall PowerPivot but this time the latest version – 2013 – and off I go…..I go to the PowerPivot page after spending £100 and then installing it….duh. They’ve ripped it out.
    Now I need to (a) uninstall this rubbish and then either (a) find my Office 2010 (!!) or (b) buy a copy of Office 2010 on ebay for £100 or (c) buy a copy of the Standalone Excel 2013 for £100. So, the cost has now doubled….just to get back to where I started.
    I won’t forget this debacle in a hurry. I wouldn’t normally vent my spleen but I am spitting blood at these idiots!

  133. Thanks for the article. A seriously bad move strategically. A major company I worked for to build powerpivot solutions for is now NOT going to upgrade to office 2013, because the volume licensing for 6000 people for the pro plus edition is too expensive, and the standard edition will disqualify them from using PowerPivot. Sticking with 2010 even though it’s buggy, probably till 2015 is released and they come to their senses and include it in all versions

  134. Great article. Unfortunately, I only found it after signing on to Office 365 Home Premium subscription. Awful decision by MS. Wanted to upgrade my KPIs to the next level.

    Afterall, people are training themselves at home on the software they use in the office. Or they test technology that is not yet available on a locked down company machine. PowerPivot pretty much dead now for me. Back to VBA for charting, I guess.

    Now, do I cancel that subscription again???? The rest in not that bad afterall, but doesn’t really make an upgrade from 2010 necessary.

  135. HORRIBLE idea. And I never capitalize anything. I was just telling my wife about all these cool tools that will solve so many of her problems at work as a power user despite the impediments of the IT staff, and then I go and find that PowerPivot is not available in the Office 365 Home Premium SKU, so we can’t develop these data models at home.

    Also, InfoPath has gone as well. Shame!

  136. Worst idea ever!!!!!
    I’m studying in a MBA and we need to workd with powerpivot, why do you sell a new Office but with less option!? I learned how to work with powerpivot and now I just need to buy an older version of my office don’t you think that it’s already expensive enough!??

  137. Real poor decision from MS. If MS wanted to win or make a name for themselves in the BI market they should’nt have done this. I am now stuck with an interesting problem.. I have MS 2010 Professional with Powerpivot Add in and my job is to provide business intelligence dashboards to the senior management. Unfortunately senior management uses Excel 2013 standard and the dashboard from 2010 does’nt fit in their system. Definitely I cant recommend them to upgrade to Pro Plus just for seeing a dashboard during sales review meeting. I was totally impressed with PowerPivot feature but now this problem makes it difficult to work.

  138. In an effort to keep it pithy, I will just say that this is not the kind of thing that will help Microsoft to maintain a position of leadership in the future. This frustrates me to no end!!!!

  139. MS is using a bad approach. I can’t even understand what options are available and what the difference is between each. So, I assume many consumers will be like me and call MS for clarification. Is MS prepared for that? And how many times does Customer Service give a clear answer. I purchased the E3 version because I thought it included the Power BI features. Then I found out that that was $30 extra. Oops! That exceeds my budget. So now I plan on cancelling my E3 subscription and buying a cheaper version.

  140. Thank you for explaining this. I bought 2013 Premium thinking Powerpivot would be available; I spoke with Microsoft help; resulting in no joy just advice I bought the wrong version. Very disappointed and frustrated by Microsoft’s decision to withdraw Powerpivot.

  141. I am new to PowerPivot. Started using it with 2010 and was anxiously looking to buy 2013 just to see the new features. I was horrified to learn that PowerPivot is not included in the 2013 Professional version (which I was planning to buy). Now I have to stick to Office 2010 just to keep learning and using PowerPivot. Why would I want to upgrade to Office Professional 2013 at $399.99 to go and repurchase the standalone version of Excel 2013 for an additional $100.00? Does not make sense to me.

  142. Taking away powerpivot from Office 365 is a regressive move.
    slowly but surely Microsoft is becoming IBM and
    Google is becoming new young Microsoft

    The old Microsoft is getting greedy and is moving away from its customers…

    Awaiting Google to bring out a solid office suite.

  143. Microsoft is the biggest rip-off ever!! Case closed.

    No wonder people are turning to QlikView/Tableau/MicroStrategy!!

  144. Two comments:
    1. Expecting Power Pivot to be included in normal 2013 and finding out after buying/installing that it isn’t, makes…PEOPLE…..MAD!!!! If you remove a potentially vital feature in an upgrade, it needs to be clear!
    2. In my organization, if not everyone is on Pro Plus, then I can’t develop Power Pivot reports for people. That means not using it at all. There is a bigger picture here.

  145. I believed that Power add ins were the new fresh features making 2013 version interesting again.
    I believed that it would bring BI to small business as well. How easier it would be to sell them new versions with truly new features. Well, I was wrong.
    Taking Power add ins away from 2013 was wrong decision.

  146. Horrendous idea to make it so difficult to get these features. I am a consultant and implement solutions for my clients using these tools, and I can’t even make it easy for them to purchase the product they need. If I suggest Tableau or Birst it is just so easy. I’m trying to recommend upgrading to the latest office (2013), which is already pushing the envelope for my slower-moving clients. It doesn’t make it an easy sell if I also have to talk them into upgrading to a flavor they don’t have experience with, and 90% of the company doesn’t need.

    Why does Microsoft need to be so obtuse?

  147. Hello – Update on Power Pivot definitely not yet available on UK Office 365 re: telecon me to MS office support line 25 Mar 2014. Recommendation = stick with Excel 2010 for the foreseeable future. I’m a developer and it is thanks to this blog that I was able to save time and hassle to thank you all for your diligence.


  148. Really frustrated by this. I am just going to buy Tableau instead. It does not look so much more expensive than Excel anymore.

  149. Hi can you get powerpivot and powerview in retail versions of Office 2013 but below Professional? ie. Home and Student or Home and Business

    I mean once off standalone installs on a single PC


  150. I agree completely – Microsoft you have missed the mark!! With zero training budgets the only way at lot of us can learn is to have the software at home and do on-line courses – clearly we will not have access to any enterprise software.

    I was delighted when Office 365 Home Premium came out I thought all my dreams had come true Microsoft products for an affordable $12 or so a month!

    Microsoft – just remember it is often these great things we learn to do in our own time and demonstrate at work that give business a reason to upgrade.

    For now I will just use my Excel 2010 version….. Vale 2013

  151. Just when I was starting to sing MS praises I run into this issue!! I have Office 365 Small Business Premium and find I don’t have powerpivot! What does Premium mean? Told I have to move to Small Business for Midsize… why?

  152. I am confused at the level of vitriol in some of these posts. Insisting on receiving valuable software for free and valuing man-years of R&D at $0 only leads to debacles like Heartbleed. Also please get some perspective – we are talking $100 vs $1000+++ for Tableau etc. It is still great value for money IMO. Do you seriously think you can’t ever use Power Pivot to save $100 worth of your time or cash over the next few years?

  153. Just purchased Office Professional 2013 specifically for Access and PowerPivot, but evidently I purchased the incorrect package. I had this ordered for me and was not aware that there was a plus to tell our purchaser. This is a terrible decision by Microsoft and will have wasted time for many people just in my instance alone.

  154. I’ve been teaching Excel since the 2000 version came out; I just bought 2013 so I can start teaching that version. I go to different businesses where employees use the laptops set up in their Training Room, and I use whatever laptop they provide me. Since I don’t have Power Pivot and Power Viewer in my retail copy of 2013 I can’t test it or work with it. If the business I go to has it which I assume they will having bought licenses in bulk, I’m at a huge disadvantage going in cold. I have no choice but to look at these features on different websites to make sure I know what I’m doing. This stinks.

  155. Let’s see, keep using Excel 2010 WITH PowerPivot, or buy Excel 2013 in Office 365 Home without it. Hmmmmm …. It looks like I’ll be using 2010 for a few years, plug that in your revenue stream (can you say dip?). Did Microsoft learn NOTHING from the XP revolt? Wait a minute, that’s right, people/businesses are avoiding Windows 8/8.1 like the plague. So, no, I guess they didn’t.

  156. Me too, have an Office 365 subscription at home at and just found out this weekend that it can’t use PowerPivot. Luckily I have 2010 at home (though 2010 doesn’t work on two screens, you just can’t win) so was able to use my PP workbooks there. As for work if a volume license for 2013 with PP is significantly more expensive than one without then maybe we will stick with 2010 there too.

    This decision seems like a bad idea – what irritates me most though is MS’s mealy mouthed marketing which leaves you to find out this stuff well after the event – they succeed it hitting my maximum irritation spot….

  157. This is really disappointing. I am trying hard to convince people around our group of companies that Excel can do the job… ERP are gaining ground, Tableau is considered as an alternative, Quantrix is murmured by some, I remain however the one pushing all users to use Excel instead as it comes “bundled with all we need to do the job”… But after reading this mumbo jumbo about NOT including PowerPivot in Excel 2013… Maybe I will stick to 2010 64-bit for now and hope that this will indeed be heard in Redmond.

    Note: Really learning a lot from this website. Kudos.

  158. I just wasted a lot of time reviewing material about using BI with Project Server and then trying to get PowerView going on my version of Excel Professional (but not Pro).
    Not only is their decision to not make it available an unbelievable mistake, the fact that none of their training materials makes this clear is very unprofessional. That there is no simple way for me to resolve this, even if I decide to throw a little money at it, is unbelievable.

  159. This is extremely frustrating. We are using Office 2010 Standard, and use Excel and PowerPivot for our application reporting. We are a smaller company, so considering the big hit we will have to take in the pocket book to eventually upgrade to Office 2013 or buy Office 2013 Standard and also the standalone Excel, we would rather spend the time to eliminate using Excel for our reporting, and go with another option, eliminating using Excel. Not a happy camper.

  160. Unbelievable.. What a mess Microsoft doing.. one way its giving away free in MS office2010, and in Standard Office 2013 version its not even thr…

    I will put off the idea of using Powerpivot now..

    1. RE “Update Oct 11, 2013: I’ve been given the “all clear” by Microsoft and from readers that as of this week, Excel 2013 Standalone DOES include and successfully install Power Pivot!”

      Kudos and thanks for the push…

  161. I am having Home and Office 2013 and still no included powerpivot. What is the latest status? When and how we will be able to get powepivot.

  162. Just installed Office Pro 2013 yesterday … and went through all the unpleasant surprises as already mentionned above? Should you be able as per today to get Powerpivot work without Pro Plus?

  163. Just bought Office 365 and to my horror, realized that there is no PowerPivot support for excel and came into this post.

    Really, Microsoft? Seriously what are you thinking. Should have just continued staying a pirate than supporting/paying Microsoft for this crap.

  164. Just want to add my voice to the many people above about this.

    Same story on my end – I have Office 2010 on our work computers, used PowerPivot and fell in love, saw a post on PowerView and ran a small scale test on a computer off the network to ensure Excel 2013 worked well with our data sets.

    Worked great on the test computer so I enthusiastically ordered a copy of Home & Student 2013. After not working, finally made it to this post – needless to say, I couldn’t submit my refund application quickly enough.

    Very disappointed in Microsoft…

  165. Terrible idea, Microsoft! I am an instructor at a community college. Our text teaches students how to use PowerPivot. We have a bulk license agreement for Office Professional. If “Professionals” can’t use the PowerPivot, there is a problem. Also, there is a big push out there to get people certified in using Excel. What is a certification worth if using PowerPivot can’t be a part of that?

  166. So I had to fork over a 100 bucks to get PowerPivot in Excel 2013 standalone downloaded from Amazon. That’s probably the best $100 I ever spent! And I say that even though the new 2013 product licensing scheme is strictly one install on one machine only (that sucks, but the days of “free” Office installs is over). I don’t like it, but if PowerPivot isn’t worth $100, then nothing is.

  167. Had I known Office 2013 Home didn’t have power pivot, I would of purchased Office 2010 instead. My reason for purchasing a newer version of Office was to learn power pivot. Pretty pissed right now. Wasted my money.

  168. Are they out of their f****** mind? Finally they had a good product to build serious BI and now they just leave it out. How can I sell this to my customers, delivering courses and show them how “clever” Microsoft Office has become.
    A few years ago MS finally got smart and now they are performing a lobotomy….

  169. Post from Japan.
    I also purchased Office 2013 expecting that PowerPivot was included….but not. So, I asked one of Microsoft guys I met at a seminar if there was a plan to make it available for Office 2013 but the answer was again No. What are they thinking?

  170. I “want it for free” too, but it is pretty specialised and Excel 2013 does dive you some “basic” Powerpiot features without the DM window. What is really reall crap (and in-excusable) is that the MS UK sales team couldn’t tell me which version to buy in order to get powerpivot (they referred be to paid tech support) sop I called them back and eventually we “worked out an answer together” – me hitting the web!

  171. The only reason I bought 2013 was for #power pivot. If I had known ahead of time I would have purchased the more expensive program but I am certainly not going to pay extra now for it. I had planned to teach a course on this -why bother since apparently none of my students will have access to the program anyway. This just really sucks. Disappointing is an understatement but certainly not unexpected from Microsoft. Whatever happened to customer service – perhaps they should read their mission statement again.

  172. Signed the petition. Microsoft – how could you?? I am also taking a free online course from EDX.ORG on Excel, and they will be going over PowerPivot. I posted the petition in the discussion forum. So many irritated students. (Way to alienate your customers, Microsoft!)

  173. Really bad decission. I was planning to give a course on that matter, but for now I will need to put this aside as the sutdents won’t have access. You got my signature for this petition.

  174. How can MS expect future users – ie. todays Students – to be taught or to take the Tool on board when it is not available in the Student Version ? MS time to to wake-up out of your “Myopic Giants” sleep !!

  175. I have been excel user since windows 3. Microsoft has never been like this. Many like me have developed so much using Microsoft products, which is where they get most innovative ideas. If some new greedy minded management changes things that will hurt Microsoft bigtime.

  176. I just spent 2 hours googling this to find the SKU limit. I have office professional 2013 but not plus. I tried taking to microsoft sales via chat to confirm standalone has it and he put me on to tech services business who said they could not answer my questions because I did not have a support agreement and told me to go somewhere else and pay $400 to have the question answered.

    Microsoft who could possibly expect customers to buy OFFICE PROFESSIONAL AND EXCEL standalone?

    Maybe I am missing something, but the more excel users that use Power Pivot, the greater will be the demand for this feature and these services.


  177. Bad call Microsoft – you shouldn’t limit your revolutionary BI self-service tools to enterprise licences in Office 2013.

    If you want to take back what IBM, Tableu, SAP and other business analytics companies have taken away from you over the years, this is not the way to do it.

    I encouraged the adoption of PowerPivot at my work by being able to experiment with it at home in Office 2010. Rest assured had I not promoted your new analytical tools to my organisation we would’ve taken up new services from your competitors and stayed on an outdated version of Excel for another decade.

    If you want to be a leader in business/finance/analytics don’t limit the use of PowerPivot and other BI tools. Instead, liberate them with your existing suite of products and you’ll have more free ambassadors who will drive your products than your uninitiated Business Development Managers.

    Yours sincerely,
    Hayden Elsem

  178. well, I’ll look at this issue from a different point. here is my situation:
    I am a student (have an office 365 for students version) and planning to become a financial analyst. a lot of positions that i apply for require this knowledge. so i decided to learn it. the problem is my office suit doesn’t have the powerpivot. how can i use it later if i cant learn it and practice it?
    and as a student i dont have the money to pay $$$ for the proplus version. sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 🙁

  179. a year ago i purchased the annual subscription to office365 and then found out i didn’t have Powerpivot — i immediately cancelled my subscripton. Surprisingly they gave all of my money back, but tried to charge me again this year, which i cancelled and reversed the charged again.

    being a former product manager i understand your narrative – yep big companies continue to do dumb things.

    thanks for allowing me to share my story

  180. What a load of bovine excrement! I guess it is truly time to look at other options rather than getting priced out of work by microsoft.

  181. Horrible idea. Excel is the only reason I put up with Microsoft, period. If they weaken the product, I have even more reason to switch fully over to Mac.

  182. Waaay late on the comment here, but man…I really thought the XML mapping feature was cool (obviously, since you & I both worked on it, and I wrote an add-in to make it even more useful), and then Microsoft made that effort effectively worthless by removing it from the standard SKU. SMH…

  183. Hi,
    Here is one of the solution from –;

    Thanks to Jason15249

    We fixed it by going into Control Panel > Programs and Features > selecting Microsoft Office Pro Plus 2013 > selecting Change > Add or Remove Features > Continue > click the + next to Microsoft Excel + Add-ins > drop down next to PowerPivot and selected Run from My Computer > Continue and then went back into Excel and it was now an available add-in under com add-ins. Looks like the default installation didnt install PowerPivot.

  184. Since when is it a good idea to take a feature “away” when one upgrades? I am furious about this and feel that I have been ripped off by MS. I thought for sure that I was doing something wrong when I could no longer use the “calculated field” in my pivot tables. Totally sucks!

  185. Thank you for explaining that I need to purchase Access if I want to use Power Pivot. I have Microsoft Office 2013 Home and Business. I am an engineer who does most of my daily computing with Excel, and so am fairly proficient with spreadsheets. When I heard about Power Pivot I thought it would be a great application for making a home budget worksheet. I feel short-sheeted to find out that it is an add-on that is not included in what I thought to be a complete version of Excel that I bought.

  186. Microsoft should have Power Pivot on all their releases. How are people going to use it if they don’t know it is there. I work in a large company with programmers, network gurus and all sorts of people who are good at what they do. In 2015 when we went to Office 2013 and had the Pro version I was the only one in the whole company who noticed Power Pivot and what it could do and read up on it. Slowly it is being used in a few departments. Now I am 67 years old and an accountant and I was the only one to even notice it. There has to be better marketing so people know it is even there. I even had to show all the people in IT where to go to put Power Pivot and Power Query on their ribbon. Come’on people. I still can’t belief it. I also am finding the SQL people are very slow to adopt it.

  187. It’s only for Enterprise customers…? I feel like Microsoft hooked up a six-horse team and then shot one of the horses. Yes, it will likely be limited to business users, and especially those with looks of data to consume and people to share data with.
    The problem is that by separating the Enterprise from the Consumer for PowerBI, they cut-off the personal learning, growth and desire for Microsoft PowerBI.
    A lot of learning is available for the user AT HOME, except for the frustration of not having the right version. Too, busy at the office? Not issued a corporate computer? Here is where the Microsoft Office Home use Program (HUP) provides significant relief.
    Though that’s not perfect, it is a fantastic benefit and opportunity.

    Giving PowerPivot to all versions would help secure that knowledge and learning for all Office customers. This would encourage suitble Enterprises to subscribe to the PowerBI Online services. And with more users aware, increased utilization of PowerBI services with better over-all satisfaction.

    Last point. Microsoft Irony. I have to pay extra to have PowerPivot in my consumer Excel, but I can have PowerBI-Desktop for free.

    “Our mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, that’s the North Star that defines every choice we make, how we show up with customers, the products that we build, everything we do is defined by this mission.” Satya Nadella: Microsoft Inspire 2017

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