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Microsoft Employee
Microsoft Employee

Share your thoughts on the new Smart Narrative visual (preview)

Hit Reply to tell us what you think about the new Smart Narrative visual so we can continue to improve.

-Power BI AI team

Frequent Visitor

Asked:   What is the Name of Rank RevYoY=1 .... this resulted the name e.g.  Juan  who was number one rev yoy...

But then I needed the Rev USD YoY dollar amount of the ranked RevYoY=1, lets the was expecting result to be -10milllions.   but resulted an error.

Which there could be a cubevalue function in smart narrative whenever smart isnt capturing the question or cant perform the result.

Not applicable

1. Can I perform calculations in the smart narrative text box? eg. To calculate percentage 

2. Is it possible to copy the formula from the auto generated summary? As we can't edit the auto generated text and I wish to customize it. Eg.





Advocate V
Advocate V

@ancyphilip, loving the smart narrative visual, but I've noticed the auto-generated insights don't intelligently remove spaces between insights when they don't apply.


It'd be really great if that could be removed as it results in a sub-par reporting experience.

Memorable Member
Memorable Member

Today Textboxes using the Q&A feature started returning errors across all my Publish to Web reports. From the error message, it seems anything resembling "Smart Narratives" has been blocked, across a wide range of scenarios. 

Power BI Smart Narratives error 2021-06-21 101749.png


Putting aside the poor grammar, this has been implemented in a very unfortunate way IMO. OK it's a preview feature so it could change. But this change seems unannounced and was implemented without warning.  If it has to be blocked, OK, but give us time to edit and retest all our impacted report pages.


I was only using it as a better Card, e.g. get the latest date from a column for a "Last Updated" card, so I doubt I was blowing up their servers.  I've used that on almost every page I've put out using Publish to Web in the last few months.  These have been a volunteer/community effort by me, mostly on the topic of COVID-19.


If this poor decision isn't reversed then I'm looking at hours of further volunteer work to swap Textboxes for some Custom Visual, likely with inferior results.  I'm really frustrated and have let the world know FWIW:


Please comment, like and share to raise awareness.


PS: It seems the block kicks in when you publish a report update? Not sure because there is no published announcement.  But if that's correct, try to avoid updating your reports.


Advocate II
Advocate II

How do I turn it off now that it's "generally available"??? I just want a regular text box please.


Biggest problem is: I can't move the configuration box out of the way so I can edit text in many cases. I really would only want the "fancy" features when needed, not invasive by default. Total overkill for general use.

Memorable Member
Memorable Member

It's a kind of OK experience to create a visual from scratch (blank Textbox) although Q&A can be incredibly frustrating at times for what seems simple.  But editing is totally obscure - I can't make any sense of the UI for editing values.


For example I created a blank Textbox and added one Value and some static text. When I try to edit it, I'm presented with this:




Why are there 2 entries? No matter what I click, I can't review or edit anything.  The seeming Edit button actually inserts a blank space.  I created 10 separate visuals and had the same experience with each one.  The only workable approach appears to be to delete and re-create the values.


It's totally baffling, especially as this feature has been in preview for months. Please put some more effort into this feature.

I just learned that my issue with editing the values is a hangover from the early versions of this feature.  If you strike that issue, you need to recreate the textbox and recreate the value.  I've tried that in a few scenarios, and it seems to be holding.

Advocate II
Advocate II

Hi @ancyphilip 
We created a smart text box showing two values from different measures. One measure returns a numeric value while the other one returns a text. There are calculation Groups in the model. But none are used in the report page. The smart text box shows both the numeric value and the text value. But as soon as we add a YOY calculation item, the text measure fails to display anything in the smart text box, however the numeric value is displayed. When we delete the newly created YOY calculation item, the text display reappears.
A short video of the issue and the relevant pbix file can be downloaded from the following link:

Download Link

I am having a similar issue. I have a smart narrative created and a value measure and a percentage measure. The preview for my percentage shows the correct value, but when I save, the value that actually appears in my smart narrative is not correct. See image example: 



Advocate I
Advocate I

Smart narrative is great... when it works.

Seems to be a couple bugs with the Review function once you save, close a report and go back to it. I can no longer see the text or title of the value I created previously, nor can I add previously created values to a new statement. 

Advocate I
Advocate I

I would like to be able to edit the auto generated summaries in smart narrative. The information is a good start but I would like to be able to edit it. Currently I cannot remove a period to expand an auto generated sentence. 

Advocate II
Advocate II

Don't know what's the issue but non-numeric measures do in general not work for me in the visual.

- Created a very simple measure TXTTEST="abc"

-  the narrative detects this measure but shows NO value in preview

- Also after klicking save/ok the value is empty with tooltip "current data and filters produce no results for this measure")


Anyone with same issues? have seen in videos that this should working but doesn't work for me with the latest PBI destkop Nov 2020 

see also

Regular Visitor

Good morning Power BI Team

Would you mind confirming which bugs were fixed in the November release relating to the Smart Visual please?



New Member

Hi. I use russian language in Power BI Desktop. When i use Smart narratives i get mix russian and english language (see link). How can i fix it? My boss wants all rus text 🙂

New Member

There is some weird behaviour when using calculation groups in combination with the new Smart Narrative. I have created a ticket as well but this is the problem:

Trying to use a sum measure with an emoji (for example Test = if ([change measure%] >=0, [change measure%] & "📈", [change measure%] & "📉") in the smart narrative:

1) Works perfectly fine in a normal model. Both with or without the icon added in the measure.

2) Add some Time Calculation Groups with Tabular Editor. All containing similar calculation items like this: VAR CP = CALCULATETABLE ( VALUES ( Dim_Date[Date] ), FILTER ( Dim_Date, Dim_Date[YearMonth] = MAX ( Dim_FilterDate[YearMonth] ) ) ) RETURN CALCULATE ( SELECTEDMEASURE (), CP )

This somehow has the effect that when using the emoji icons (which can be useful in a smart narrative to summarize upwards or downwards movements) in a basic measure, that smart narrative visual does not display anything anymore..


However the measure still works perfectly fine without any icon in the measure itself. And the calculation groups are not even used or filtering the smart narrative or page. Just the fact that they are created in the background makes the smart narrative not able to use any icons in a measure..

Helper I
Helper I

The new Smart Narrative is a good addition to Power BI and is valueble to our reporting process. But I found it only works with limited visual types, would it be possible it could work with table/metric visual? 



Resolver I
Resolver I



I think the Smart Narrative visual is a great addition for Power BI. Before i used Enlighten Data Story, but i prefer out of the box solutions! There are, however, a few things I like to see:


  • Easier access to pre-created measures. 
  • Conditional Color formatting. So we can change color or add symbols if there is a raise or decline. 
  • Edit the name after we pressed Save. You can still change the text you "ask", but not the given name. 
  • Is it possible that we can see what kind of calculation is used?

Keep up the good work!

Advocate I
Advocate I

HI PBI Team,


My end users are mainly Dutch so I hope more language options will be added in the future. Also posted an idea for this (
In addition, if I compile a story with measurements myself and want to add an existing measurement, it is sometimes difficult to find as there is no visual distinction between measurements and columns in the dropdown menu. All in all an interesting addition, but it still deserves to be further developed.


Kind regards,



Helper I
Helper I

So far i can't seem to get anything useful out of this viz.  How can I appy filters on the values? I tried basic stuff like 

"loan portfolio balance on current snapshot date " , "loan portfolio balance on top 1 by snapshot date" and I get either the wrong amount, or the wrong date.  Not intuitive at all.  I don't use Q&A much since most of my models are SSAS but this particular report is query based and Q&A is set up, so the words turn blue, but the output is nonsense. 

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