Superset vs Tableau - Comparision of Tableau Open Source Equivalent

Superset is a upcoming open source BI dashboard tool initially developed by Airbnb. During last year and so, it has found a growing adoption among tech community. Tableau is a commercial BI dashboard and visualization tool and it is the market leader of Business Intelligence dashboards with a huge market share.

During last 3-4 years, majority of tech tools used for data analysis and processing have remainded dominated by open source tools like python, pandas, scikit, R, hadoop, spark etc. But in the visualization and dashboard, there was no good open source alternative. Airbnb Superset has changed this scenarios and now emerged as a serious Tableau open source equivalent.

To compare Tableau vs Superset (Tableau open source equivalent), we will look at 4 different points:

  1. Supported Deployments - desktop vs server
  2. Supported Data Sources
  3. Supported Visualizations and Dashboard
  4. Supported Authentication and Authorizations
  5. Pricing

Superset vs Tableau - Desktop vs Server vs Online

Tableau comes in three variants - 1) Desktop, 2) Server (hosted on premises or in cloud by you), 3) Online (SaaS model hosted by Tableau itself).

To compare with that terminology, Superset is a primary a Server deployment. Though experienced developers can also use it in the desktop mode.

Superset vs Tableau - Supported Data Sources

Tableau list of supported data sources is very big, especially it supports lot of commercial databases.

  • Tableau Supported Data Sources - Actian Matrix, Actian Vector, Amazon Athena, Amazon Aurora, Amazon Elastic MapReduce, Amazon Redshift, Anaplan, Apache Drill, Aster Database, Box, Cisco Information Server, Cloudera Hadoop, Cloudera Impala, DataStax Enterprise, Denodo, Dropbox, ESRI Shapefiles, EXASOL, Firebird, Google Analytics, Google BigQuery, Google Cloud SQL, Google Sheets, Hortonworks Hadoop Hive, HP Vertica, IBM BigInsights, IBM DB2, IBM PDA, JSON files, KML files, Kognitio, MapInfo Interchange Formats, MapInfo Tables, MapR Hadoop Hive, Marketo, MarkLogic, MemSQL, Microsoft Access, Microsoft Analysis Services, Microsoft Azure Data Lake, Microsoft Azure Data Warehouse, Microsoft Azure DB, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft OneDrive, MonetDB, MongoDB Bi, MySQL, OData, Oracle, Oracle Eloqua, Oracle Essbase, PDF files, Pivotal Greenplum Database, PostgreSQL, Presto, Progress OpenEdge, Quickbooks Online, R Files,, including and, SAP HANA, Microsoft PowerPivot, Microsoft SharePoint Lists, Microsoft Spark on HDInsight, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft SQL Server PDW, SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse, SAP Sybase ASE, SAP Sybase IQ, SAS files, ServiceNow ITSM, Snowflake, Spark SQL, Splunk, SPSS files, Tableau Data Extract, Teradata, Teradata OLAP Connector, Text files—comma separated value (.csv) files, Databases and applications that are ODBC 3.0 compliant

Superset also supports large number of popular databases

  • Superset primary data sources - MySQL, Postgres, Vertica, Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, SQLite, Greenplum, Firebird, MariaDB, Sybase, IBM DB2, Exasol, MonetDB, Snowflake, Redshift
  • In addition Superset support any database supported by SQLAlchemy

Compared to Tableau, SuperSet data sources are limited.

Superset vs Tableau - Supported Visualizations and Dashboards

Both superset and tableau support visualization and custom dashboards. Here are the demo videos for both of them to give you an idea.

Superset visualization

Superset sample visualization dashboard

Tableau Visualization

Tableau sample visualization dashboard

Superset vs Tableau - Supported Authentication and Authorizations

Authentication is an important feature for adoption of BI dashboard into an enterprise. Here is a summary of supported authentication backends.

Authentication Backend Tableau SuperSet
Oauth (Google, SalesForce etc) Yes Yes
OpenID Yes Yes
Active Directory Yes No

Superset vs Tableau - Pricing

As of Jan 2018, the following pricing holds for Tableau and Superset

  • Superset - Free
  • Tableau Desktop - $35 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Tableau Desktop Professional - $70 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Tableau Server - $35 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Tableau Online (hosted server) - $42 per user per month (billed annually)

In pricing, Superset being free (& open source) provides a great alternative to tableau. Tableau with its billed annually pricing is very pricy at the moment.


Tableau supports large number of datasources compared to Superset at this moment. But the databases supported by SuperSet covers large number of practical use cases. Superset visualization support is now sufficient for majority of enterprise use cases.

Given all this, Superset has emerged as a successful Tableau open source equivalent.