Meet ZoomCharts Donut Visual: Customer Experience

At ZoomCharts we’re always working on improving our visuals as it’s important for us to deliver a product that corresponds to the expectations of our customers. In order to understand, what is the experience of our customers, we were eager to find out their opinion. That’s why we asked one of our customers, who is a proficient Power BI user, to test the Donut Visual and record his experience. Below you can read his extensive comment which we’re happy to share with you in hope that it will inspire you to try out our Advanced Donut Visual.

First Impressions

The first thing I noticed were smooth rounded lines pointing at sectors of the donut chart. Quite a simple idea yet making the viz look much more harmonized compared to a standard donut chart. After playing for a couple of minutes, you start feeling that the visual lives in a 3D world rather than on a flat canvas. This shifts you, as a consumer of a report, to a new volumized adventure giving an extra dimension to your numbers. When you hover on the ZoomCharts donut chart, highlighting acts like a dimmer emphasizing the overall smooth perception of visualization.

In general, the animation is fantastic. The first time I saw it I felt that it was something very natural. It looks like a spinning wheel, something you got used to a long time ago and have rediscovered now.

Functionality of Donut Visual

After I installed this viz, I was playing with various combinations of drill-downs for half an hour because each time when I was trying to focus on developing new features for my Power BI report, I found myself drilling up and down over the new donut chart again and again. It’s also very interesting to watch how the visual reacts on the changes of the filter context (when you filter other visuals on the same report page or drill up/down). The way how the transition happens between various drill-down states depends on the extent of the difference between the drill-down levels or changes in the filter context:

Although this visual is called a “Donut Visual”, this name doesn’t reflect its major advantages. The standard Power BI Donut chart also knows how to do drill-downs. Nevertheless, with ZoomCharts Donut Visual, after you drill down to the next level, you are still able to see a track of the previous level in the middle:

At first, you do not understand why the drill-down works by the left click whereas a de-facto standard in Power BI for drilling up and down is the right-click context menu. But when you notice that the history of drill-downs remains in the inner circle of the chart, you realize that it’s actually extremely efficient: now, you can filter and drill-down all-in-one and you are not losing any information. On the contrary, you gain much more awareness of the current report state because this drill-down history serves as bread crumbs for a website.

In addition, on the lowest level of your drill-down hierarchy, if you click on any outer segment, it slices out of the chart which is also very convenient when you explore other visuals impacted by the selection:

When you switch from a standard donut chart to the donut chart custom visual for Power BI from ZoomCharts, the sequence of segments becomes sorted by the value of the selected measure:

This sorting is another simple and very convenient feature: sometimes, when you have segments of nearly similar size it’s becoming difficult to identify which one is bigger. In ZoomCharts custom visual, you do not have such a problem as you always know that the segments have already been sorted.

A New Level of Animation

You might notice on the videos above that the direction of transitions and their speed also differs making the animation look more natural and friendly to the customer. Of course, someone may tell me that the way how animation works has a secondary importance. I strongly disagree with that. These are the small details – animation, color themes – which become the key differentiator for your personal style of creating visuals compared to visualizations which can be created by anyone right after watching a 30-minute introduction video about Power BI.

On top of that, a proper animation serves as a cover of your “BI book”. This is what attracts the first sight and draws the customer’s attention. Having done a compelling start of your data presentation, it will be much easier for you to tell your data story afterwards.

I vividly remember the first time I experienced how visuals interact in Power BI: once you have a chance to touch this miracle, you will never be able to come back to working in Excel or SQL without visualizations. The same emotions I’ve felt after I tried the donut chart for Power BI from ZoomCharts: I am not going to use the standard animation again.


To sum up, with Donut Visual from ZoomCharts, you are not making graphs, you start working at the level of pure art. I, as many data-visualization guys, truly love donut charts and for this reason, quite often, I’m in a search of something innovative. Each original visual I consider a gift to myself as a BI professional – now I can come to my customers and show them some new cool stuff. That is why I’m appealing to you to follow my example and try bringing something new into your visualizations by installing this awesome visual from ZoomCharts.

What is your experience with ZoomCharts Donut Visual? Try out our Advanced Donut Visual and share your thoughts in the comments.


Online Examples

See various ZoomCharts exmaples in our online examples gallery. Each of examples has sample source code exposed.

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