Microsoft Azure Analysis Services is now in public preview as a platform-as-a-service (PaaS).
- Currently only SSAS Tabular 1200 Compatibility is supported
- On-Premises sources (via On-Premises Data Gateway) and Azure/Cloud sources
- Both DirectQuery and In-Memory Mode Models
- Up to 100GB model cache (S4 Service Tier)
- Scale up and down between Standard tiers not available yet
- Only two regions for now (South-Central US and West Europe)
- Leverage Standard SSAS Tools
- SSDT in Visual Studio for Dev and Deploy
- SSMS for Manage and Admin
- SQL Server Profiler for Tuning and Support
Three of several potential use cases:
- Use the gateway to process on-premises data into an in-memory model hosted in Azure thus eliminating use of gateway for reporting/dashboard queries in Power BI
- Use DirectQuery mode to provide a semantic layer over cloud data sources
- Elasticity (of course): Quickly scale up/down resources as BI projects progress, easily build and consume prototype models.