Easy method for restoring/uploading existing Power Pivot/Power BI Desktop Models
One of the nicest features of on premise SSAS Tabular is the ability to ugrapde a Power Pivot model from Excel directly into SSAS. From what I've seen so far, this isn't easy in Azure since there isn't direct access to the server and file structure and normally the SSAS service account needs permissions to access the Power Pivot file's location.
The first release of this feature was released today: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/introducing-the-azure-analysis-services-web-designer/. More features will be coming.
Hans Kristiansen commented
This is a very important feature for Power Users in a Self-Service BI scenario, and to support Power BI Governance and deployment. https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/powerbi-admin-governance/
Lee Whitney commented
Is it planned as part of this to allow PBI Desktop to edit the model directly? Why worry about this upload/restore, just work with the Azure model in the same way to work with the desktop model.
After playing with this a little more, you can get a Power Pivot model uploaded, you just can't use the Azure SSAS instance as your workspace server. Use an integrated workspace or a server (like a localhost installation) that you can give the service account access to the file. Once the model is in SSDT set the deployment server to the Azure SSAS instance.