Solutions Spotlight: Refresher with ArcGIS Field Maps - Data Collection & What's New?
By Alex Lange, Solutions Engineer, Pro-West & Associates
Keeping up with the ‘latest and greatest’ can be hard. So here is what you may have missed in ArcGIS Fields Maps!
ArcGIS Field Maps Overview
Field Maps is a mobile and data-driven application that supports a local government’s need for field data collections. This map-centric and fully mobile solution is available with ArcGIS Online and ArcGIS Enterprise 10.6.1 or later for access to location-based data in the field. Field Maps is currently supported in IOS (14.5 or later) and Android devices (8.0 or later). The key to configuring these maps is a companion authoring interface, known as Field Maps Designer, which can be found in ArcGIS Online or Portal for Enterprise 10.8.1 or layer. With the ability to quickly build and deploy maps for field data editing, data collection becomes easier than ever.
See this Esri post on Getting to Know Field Maps!
Out-of-the-box capabilities in ArcGIS Field Maps enhance data collection efforts beyond just editing attributes and geometry:
- Creating and Sharing User-Made Markups (screen graphics)
- Location Sharing to Track Workers
- Lightweight Smart Forms
- Related Records
ArcGIS Field Maps also supports high-accuracy data collection in the field. Meaning that, using your chosen device, Field Maps can alter the ‘provider’ of the GPS location information from the device to an external receiver. Some handheld GPS devices do support the Field Maps mobile app and are a handy alternative to the traditional phone and tablet option.
“Now You Know”
What else is exciting and makes Field Maps a top data collection option?
- Calculated Arcade Expressions for Attributes
- Conditional Visibility between Different Fields
- User-Defined Layout for Smart Forms
The best part is that all these functions can be taken offline, with up to 16 map areas, mobile workers can download snapshots of data and sync back to the source data when connectivity can be reestablished.
An important note about how to get access to this app is to have at least a Mobile Worker User Type license (formerly Field Worker) in ArcGIS Online or Enterprise. Creator User Types have access to ArcGIS Fields Maps as well, however, to utilize location sharing the Location Sharing User Type Extension will be required. That capability is unique to Mobile Worker as of July 2022. Field Maps is now a fully realized data collection experience and its product team at ESRI is continuing to improve and add great content and tools for its users.
Want more information on ArcGIS Field Maps? See Get to know ArcGIS Field Maps (esri.com)
With the latest release of ArcGIS Field Maps, users can now download the mobile application can now be downloaded on Windows devices. This will be a great feature for any organization with access to Windows mobile or tablet devices for mobile data collection. Along with this top update there were a few other smaller changes made to the existing app:
- GPS and Location Accuracy Updates
- Allow Manual Locations
- Arcade Expressions in Geofences
- Feature Set Access in Smart Form Arcade Expressions
See Esri's post on What’s New in ArcGIS Field Maps (June 2023) (esri.com)
What's Expected in Upcoming Releases of ArcGIS Field Maps?
The existing app, known as Workforce, has long been slated to be integrated into ArcGIS Field Maps. This update is now closer than ever. Getting the ability to assign work and have a to-do list for mobile staff members will be the first step in the integration process.
Logic enabled web forms will continue to receive updates:
- Multi-Select Question
- Devices Variable Updates
- Relationship & Attachments within forms
- Sensor Integrations
The goal of using ArcGIS Field Maps, in many cases is to collect new data. Ultimately, that is the reason the app exists! Enhancements to drawing modes, nested data, photo markups are just a few of the many changes that will be coming to ArcGIS Field Maps to improve the efficiency and additional data points.