This comparison takes into account BI tools features that are important for embedding purposes:
|Application embeds are secure||Critical||Means that embeds cannot be accessed outside your app. All necessary security context (like user's ID) used in report's query is passed in a secure way and cannot be modified by the end user (signed/encrypted).|
|PDF/Excel/CSV exports||Critical||Exports are very important for end users. PDF export should be identical to the report's web view (layout/formatting/colors). Many BI tools don't have Excel export that preserves pivot table's layout, or don't support conditional formatting (cells colors, links). Only few BI tools support export to Excel PivotTable.|
|Live (direct) connections to data sources / filters are applied in-query||Critical||When reports are embedded it is important to display actual data to end users. This is possible only when BI tool works directly with a database (= dataset is not imported and doesn't need to be refreshed). Also this allows to utilize DW (if present) and its OLAP capabilities. Live connection also supposes query-driven filters, when you have some control over DB query generation.|
|Fixed price for unlimited users||Critical||If pricing works only per-user this can make embedded reports very expensive. Most embedded BI solutions offer fixed prices and allow any number of viewers (of embedded visuals).|
|White-labeling / CSS-theming||Critical||When you embed reports / dashboards into your app they should look like a part of your app, not like a foreign thing. CSS-theming means that you may adopt embedded visuals appearance by adding own CSS rules to match your app style. Most likely, you don't want to see BI tool's logo/brand in embeds (this is called white-labeling).|
|On-premise (self-hosted) installation||Important||Embedded visuals are parts of your app, and if they are hosted outside you cannot control their availability. For sensitive data it might be a requirement to keep it in-house, and the only way to satisfy this is usage of on-premise BI tool version that is hosted on your server and managed by your admins.|
|Version control / deployment strategy||Important||Most likely you want to use a standard development flow for embedded reports - like for other (coded) parts of your app. This means that reports are created/changed in a dev environment, then tested on staging/QA env, and then go to production env as a part of app's release. It is a big plus if data models/reports have human-readable text representation and maybe stored under the version control (git), so all changes may are tracked and may be reviewed.|
|Parameters can be hidden in embeds||Important||In this way your app can control what report parameters are available for end users.|
|Advanced pivot tables||Nice to have||Many BI tools offer only basic pivot tables; advanced capabilities usually include an ability to expand/collapse groups, pagination (if the matrix has many rows/columns), table calculations like percentages/diffs/running totals and other things.|
|SeekTable||$||All must-have features are present. Powerful pivot tables with real Excel exports (preserves layout/colors) + supports unique export to Excel PivotTable.
Custom visuals (any HTML/JS) are supported in dashboards.
Version control/diffs/automated deployments are supported with XML backup/restore.
Very afforable pricing ($233/month, including white-labeling).
|Developers-oriented dashboards (HTML template, no code-less designer). Only basic chart types, no built-in maps (it is possible to have maps with custom visuals in dashboards).|
|Holistics.io||$||Most must-have features for embedding are present.||Cloud-only (no self-hosted version). Pivot tables are basic (no expand/collapse).|
|Metabase||$$||Most must-have features for embedding are present.||No PDF exports. No Excel export for pivot tables.
Embedding requires "Enterprise" plan (starts from $15,000/year).
|Mode||$$||Most must-have features for embedding are present.||No PDF exports. Pivot tables are basic.|
|PowerBI Embedded||$$$||Huge gallery of visual types. Enterprise features.||On-premise subscription is rather expensive (PBI Premium = $4990/month). Direct-query mode is not supported for many data sources (like MySql).
No Excel export for pivot tables. No expland/collapse for pivot table columns. No diffs under text-based version control (PBIX is binary format).
|Sisense||$$$||All must-have features for embedding are present.||Rather expensive. Custom CSS styling is not allowed.|
|Redash||$||Redash is simply wrong tool for embedded analytics.
Many must-have capabilities are not supported: no secure embeds, no UI for non-SQL users, no control over filters in embeds, no row-level security.
|Apache Superset||(free)||No secure embeds (!). Many must-have capabilities are not supported.|
|Google Data Studio||(free)||Easy to use with Google data sources (BigQuery, Analytics, Ads, Sheets), interactive features.||Cloud-only. Embedded reports always contain the Google Data Studio watermark (which cannot be removed for any $$$). Viewers needs to have Google Account (and be logged-in) for secure embedding. No Excel exports. No custom visuals.|