Design dashboards that shine on any device in Tableau 10

Ever wish you could make your dashboard look great on desktop and on mobile? Say hello to device designer in Tableau 10!

Update: Tableau 10 is here! Download now to try out the feature outlined below.

Ever wish you could make your dashboard look great on desktop and on mobile? Say hello to device designer in Tableau 10!

With this new feature, you can design, preview, and customize a dashboard’s appearance on phones, tablets, and desktop monitors. Then you can publish a single dashboard to Tableau Server with optimized viewing and interaction across a range of devices.

How it works

When you open a dashboard, you’ll notice a “device preview” button in the dashboard pane.

Clicking the button reveals two new authoring tools that preview the dashboard layout across a variety of device types and models.

The first is the preview toolbar. It lets you select from a variety preview device types (desktop, tablets, and phones) and models (iPhone 6S, iPad Pro, etc.). The second is a black outline of the device’s screen (in logical pixels) overlaid on your dashboard. We call this the preview frame.

In the example below, notice that the dashboard extends beyond the borders of the preview screen (the black outline). This would be a bad experience, requiring horizontal and vertical scrolling to access the entire dashboard.

But there’s an easy fix! Click the “add tablet layout” button in the preview toolbar. That creates a special customization of the dashboard that we call device layout.

With device layout, you can customize the dashboard’s content on a device by its sizing behavior. For this dashboard, I’ll select the “fit all” option, and the dashboard will automatically scale to fit inside the preview frame.

This feature is deceptively simple yet powerful. You can use it to check your existing dashboards and see how they appear on various devices. You’ll be surprised by how many work well on numerous devices with very little modification.

With device designer, your original dashboard becomes the default master template. Worksheets, actions, and formatting are shared across device layouts and the default dashboard. This is intentional as we want to create a single dashboard that’s optimized for viewing across devices. And since each device layout can have its own sizing behaviors, you can control the worksheets that are displayed as well as their respective sizes.

When you’re ready, simply publish to Tableau Server and pull up your dashboard on any device. Tableau Server will automatically detect the width of the device’s browser window and serve up the appropriate layout. You only need to remember one URL since it’s a single dashboard. Better yet, forget URLs and just use the Tableau Mobile app for phone or tablet!

Join the beta

We’re thrilled to bring you these new features, and we’d love your input. We have a timeline for getting Tableau 10 out the door, but we’d first like to get solid usage in beta and fix any bugs. Please join the beta program and let us know what you think.

Learn more about Tableau 10

Tableau 10 includes a brand new look and feel, and a host of new features to help you prep, analyze, and share your insights even faster. Check out our Coming Soon page for details.