Tag: Android

Data Collection Playground and ArcGIS on Smartphones

Your iPhone, Windows Phone, iPad or iPod Touch can become a powerful tool for field data collection. Using the ArcGIS application that is available from Apples’ App Store and the Windows Phone Marketplace, you can collect GIS features using the GPS receiver in your device or by sketching on the map, fill out intelligent attribute forms  and attach photos/videos to them. All edits are instantly synchronized with your enterprise geodatabase.

Getting started is as simple as using your smartphone. The Mobile team has hosted a number of data collection maps in a group called “Collection Samples” that is accessible directly on your phone and can be found inside of the Gallery. Here is how you can access the collection maps using your iPhone…

After tapping on one of the maps in the Collection Samples group (Infrastructure for example), you will find that the map itself contains additional functionality within the Map Tools called Collect. Tap on Collect to choose a Feature Type or Template from the editable map layers and then follow the additional steps to collect a new GIS feature.

These maps are available using ArcGIS Online and are publicly shared in a group called Esri Data Collection Playground for you to get started with. Feature layers provide templates for data collection inside of the ArcGIS application. Each of the collection sample maps available within the smartphone app have an associated Map Package that you can download to your server as well. To find the map package, look at the details of the map inside of ArcGIS Online. Looking at the details of the Infrastructure Map you will find a link to the Infrastructure Map Package. Opening the map package you can then host your own Feature Service and then either use ArcGIS Online or your own on-premise server to host maps for use on your smartphone device.

We would like to see you start leveraging smartphones for data collection today. Please try the Collection Sample maps and let us know what you think. Send your feedback to arcgis4iphone@esri.com.

NOTE: The features you add to the maps hosted inside of the Esri Data Collection Playground are archived and then scrubbed nightly. Please do not expect features to be maintained. This is a playground and we are here to pick up after your edits…

Also, ArcGIS will be coming to Android devices very soon and the capabilities listed above will be available to your favorite Droids in the near future…

Thank you!

Mobile Team

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The ArcGIS API for Android Beta Program is now Open!

We are excited to announce that the ArcGIS API for Android is in public beta and available for download…. more details.

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The ArcGIS API for Android Beta Program is now open


We are excited to announce that the ArcGIS API for Android is in public beta and available for download from our beta community site! Use it to build Android mapping applications that:


·       Access dynamic, tiled, and feature map services

·       Overlay graphics

·       Search and identify

·       Perform advanced analysis

·       Collect and edit data from your android phone and tablet devices


Access the Online documentation and Get started today!


The Android Team


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Twitter Poll for ArcGIS Mobile

The ArcGIS Mobile Team is looking for your feedback!

Please cast your vote on the following Polls:

Hardware Devices & Platforms: http://twtpoll.com/zjlqb3

Feature Enhancements: http://twtpoll.com/fs6jn8


Follow us on Twitter: @mgcopping, @jeffshaner and @ffaubry

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The Mobile Web

A lot of people have asked us when we will add support for the iPhone, Blackberry and what about Android? Imagine the reaction we receive when we the answer is – we already do! Well, sort of. To explain, lets first discuss the target user of ArcGIS Mobile and then discuss how the Mobile Web fits into the picture…

Enterprise Field Worker

ArcGIS Mobile is designed and engineered to fit the needs and workflows of the enterprise field worker. Viewing and navigating to locations, collecting new spatial and tabular data, and locating/updating existing assets in the field are all common tasks for the enterprise field worker. They demand highly focused, workflow driven applications that are fully functional whether you are connected in the field or not. Where do you find the enterprise field worker? He/she inspects their city infrastructure, performs state or county surveys, responds to incidents when something bad happens, and much more. They leverage the corporate investment in GIS to manage their infrastructure in the field.

The Mobile Consumer

Those local and state agencies that are moving to ArcGIS Server and deploying mobile GIS to their field operations using ArcGIS Mobile are not the only field workforce that consumes corporate spatial data – citizens within a local government, tax payers within a county are as well. The mobile consumer wants to discover corporate information that is managed by their state or local government. For example, why can’t I see all of the recycling centers in my city using my iPhone or Blackberry? How about public transportation routes and schedules?

So how can a local government support so many different devices…

ArcGIS Server and Mobile Web Browsers

Mobile browsers come in a variety of flavors. They range from browsers that support basic or partial HTML rendering to those which support full HTML, JavaScript & CSS. Leading the pack right now is the iPhone Safari with support for all the above plus SVG graphics with JavaScript binding and an on device database. Several other mobile device manufacturers also integrate full fledged browsers, including Opera Mobile/Mini, Mobile Explorer, Blackberry Browser, etc. (A comprehensive list can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microbrowser). 

At the 9.3 release, ArcGIS Server includes REST access to mapping and other geospatial services. These services can be easily accessed through simple HTTP calls, which can be made through any server side scripting language such as Php, Perl, Ruby, Python, etc or languages such as Java & C# or within client applications through JavaScript or FLEX/ActionScript.

Simple Web Mapping

With the rest of this blog posting, we will explain how you can use the new ArcGIS Server REST API to add a map into an HTML page and allow basic map navigation using links on the page and serve your consumers with your corporate data. We will use one of the ArcGIS Online map services as the map to display.The following is the PHP code for building this simple mobile web mapping application.

  • Determine the size of the map image to be requested, based on the browser’s USER-AGENT.

$userAgent = $_SERVER["HTTP_USER_AGENT"];if (strstr($userAgent, “iPhone”)) {
}else if (…) {

else {
  echo $userAgent;

  • Determine whether there is an extent already passed to it in the url query or initialize the map to a pre-defined extent.

$bbox = $ _ GET["bbox"];

if ($bbox == “”) {
  $bbox = “…”;

$bbox = explode(“,”, $bbox);
$left = (double) $bbox[0];

  • Create image request to ArcGIS Server REST,  passing size, format and extent information in the image url

 “<img src=”http://server.arcgisonline.com/…/export?f=image&format=jpg&bbox=” . $left . “,” . $bottom . “,” . $right . “,” . $top . “&” . $size . “” width=”" . $imgWidth . “” height=”" . $imgHeight . “” />”;

  • Calculate extents and create links based on navigation operations; zoom in/out and pan north/east/south/west. These links call the page itself and pass the calculated extent.

“<a href=”" . $base . “?” . “bbox=” . expand($left, $bottom, $right, $top, $width, $height, 0.5) . “”>+</a> | “;
“<a …>-</a> || “;

“<a href=”" . $base . “?” . “bbox=” . offset($left, $bottom, $right, $top, $width, $height, 0, $panFactor) . “”>N</a> | “;
“<a …>E</a> | “;
“<a …>S</a> | “;
“<a …>W</a> | “;

The following are screenshots of this simple mapping application running on different device emulators:

iPhone 2.1

Blackberry Curve (8320)


Android (v1)

This blog post is the first in a series of blog entries that will be published on how you can leverage the Mobile Web. Thanks go to Jayant Sai (lead developer of the Javascript API) for contributing this article.

Mobile Team

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