Collector just got better

Collector for ArcGIS didn’t just release, but as part of the ArcGIS platform, it benefits when the platform gets stronger. And June’s release of ArcGIS Online brought some cool features that you’ll benefit from when using Collector.

Easily include GPS metadata in layers from templates
Collector can record GPS metadata for you. With the ArcGIS Online release, layers created with the feature layer templates can include the fields required to record GPS metadata. Just check Capture GPS receiver information when using a template to create a new hosted feature layer.

New template: Ground Control
With the new Ground Control template, you can quickly create a hosted layer to store ground control points (GCPs). With your GCPs, imagery data, and Drone2Map you can create amazing imagery products with high accuracy.

Links to the Microsoft PowerBI app now work on iOS
Collector users that also use Microsoft PowerBI can now put links in pop-ups that launch PowerBi, providing access to other reporting information associated with a given asset or location. Include a link in your pop-up using the mspbi:// scheme, make sure you have the Microsoft PowerBI app installed, and you can launch it from the pop-up.

The Downside
There are also some updates that Collector won’t make use of until a later release. Arcade expressions in pop-ups are powerful, but won’t work in Collector yet. Fields that use them for the pop-up display empty on Android and iOS devices, and show <Null> on Windows devices.

In your organization, you can now enable an option Use Esri vector basemaps in supported ArcGIS apps. This changes the basemap group to use vector basemaps where they are available. Vector basemaps are not yet supported in Collector, and when enabled Collector will continue to use the existing basemap group. However, this setting does cause a couple issues for Collector. The first issue is when authoring maps for Collector. Map Viewer does support vector basemaps, so its basemap gallery uses vector basemaps. This makes it easier to create maps using vector basemaps. In Collector, the map will load but none of the vector basemap layers will display. While your users can change the basemap in Collector and continue using the map, they’ll have a better experience if the maps aren’t authored with vector basemaps. If your organization enables this setting, you need to choose your basemaps carefully when authoring for Collector to avoid vector basemaps.

The second issue caused by this setting is that it increases the chance that the default basemap of the organization is a vector basemap. Collector uses the default basemap when setting up the area for a location profile. If the default basemap is a vector basemap or contains vector basemap layers, those won’t render. Collector users will be left trying to set up the profile area without the basemap to use as a reference. Update: With the 17.0.3 release of Collector this is no longer an issue. The topographic basemap is used to set up the area for a location profile.

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  1. jason53220 says:

    Esri, you need to time your releases so all of the products work together.

  2. says:

    Requesting if ESRI can work on report which can be generated using collector Data. This report should be able to export as pdf so that it can send via email or uploaded in other local systems.

  3. Michael says:


    is there a place to log bugs, too?

    I found a couple with a colleague that we think are NOT issues with the data but bugs in Collector:
    - when using an online version of a feature layer and adding a polygon feature, all feature types in the selection list show up with the last feature types display attributes. Worse, when the feature is added and you edit it, all feature types are checked off!!! Everything is working as expected when you download the map and work offline, but…(see next)
    - when someone else makes an offline change and uploads them to the Portal, refresh does not show me on my map that I need to perhaps update my map so as to not duplicate my colleagues work! I get a little number when I add features, why don’t I get the other way???
    - Both users working in live mode don’t see the updates they made on the maps until you zoom in, zoom out, move the map etc. Eventually the change will show. That was between two people only, which is way too slow.

  4. ahigdon_cesamusace says:

    Is there a trick to getting GPS receiver metadata captured while using a Location Tracking layer in a map with Location Tracking enabled? Right now it only populates the Accuracy field and none of the other fields. However, if I manually add a point in Collector it will update all the GPS metadata fields (Receiver Name, Horizontal and Vertical Accuracy, PDOP, HDOP, etc.).

    • Kylie Donia says:

      Hi Anthony! We see the same — the location of the tracking point is using the external receiver but we aren’t storing metadata for those points. Could you give me a bit more info on why you’d like to store the metadata with tracks? If you could email me at kdonia at esri dot com with some details the team and I can try to understand what you are doing with the data. Thanks!

      • kulasdn says:

        I too am having this issue. I created a location tracking layer from a template and selected the ‘record GPS information’ option, however only accuracy is being populated when using the layer in Collector. I don’t have any issue capturing GPS information when I added those fields manually to other layers that I created myself. Was there ever a resolution to this?

        • Kylie Donia says:

          Hi kulasdn — This is the expected behavior: when Collector automatically adds a point to the tracking layer it doesn’t store metadata. Could you give me a bit more info on why you’d like to store the metadata with tracks? If you could email me at kdonia at esri dot com with some details the team and I can try to understand what you are doing with the data. Thanks!