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Explorer? Creator? Viewer? Demystifying Tableau’s Licensing Model.

It’s been just under 6 months that Tableau announced a ‘New Day for Data‘, announcing three key changes;

1. Introducing the new version of Tableau Desktop and Server, from 10.5 to 2018.1 – An amendment to the naming convention from major/minor releases to year of release/version number for that year. For example, 2018.2 was the 2nd version released in 2018.

2. Tableau Prep, previously code-named Project Maestro, was added to the Tableau suite of analytical tools, focussing on data preparation activities.

3. Changes to the subscription pricing model, with 3 brand new roles.

With the new license types which Tableau are offering, there comes a different method of thinking around Tableau Software.

The three new license types encompass the three different types of user we see using the Tableau platform.

First up we have the Tableau Creator license type.

These are users who would get access to Tableau Prep, Tableau Desktop and Tableau Server as standard. They are the types of users who build content, curate datasources and share their work with the wider community. They create.

What’s cool about Creators?

A huge leap Tableau has made with the Creator license type isn’t just with Tableau Prep; it’s with the addition of being able to create data connections todatabases from within the web edit in-browser interface. Huge.

Next comes the Tableau Explorer license type.

These are the users who don’t curate datasources, but might want to create content to explore their data to dig a little bit deeper to find that niche line of insight. And they might then want to share that work. This user gets access to Tableau Server as well as access to create content on existing datasources via the Web Edit function.

What’s different for an Explorer?

A user with the role of Tableau Explorer can interact and use visualisations on the Tableau Server, but only create new workbooks using Web Edit from datasources already on a particular site.

Finally, the Tableau Viewer.

This is the majority of your organisation, the people who want to see and understand what is going on with their business. These users have access to Tableau Server to consume, understand, filter and interact with dashboards and reports.

In conjunction with Tableau Prep, these new exciting features (my favourite is data connectors in web edit) truly do mean a new day for data.

If you want to learn more about these tools, or wish to keep an eye on what we’re up to, why not check out our Meetup page? http://til.bi/talkdata We’ll be hosting events and workshops at the new home for our Data School in central London.


Ravi Mistry

London, UK

2 thoughts on “Explorer? Creator? Viewer? Demystifying Tableau’s Licensing Model.

  1. Hi Ravi, cool article! May I please ask 1 question to you? Is viewer license concurent or user base? I have just purchased 100 viewer license for my company but more people is requesting for access. Can I just stick to 100 viewer license, and then I assign (let’s say) 120 user to the viewer role and let them “take turn” to use the license?

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