ArcGIS Survey123

What's new in ArcGIS Survey123 (November 2021)


A new update to ArcGIS Survey123 is now available. This release focuses on improvements to the Survey123 field app and Survey123 Connect.

Here are the highlights:


Better grid layouts


Grid layouts help you build more professional forms. With them, you can compact questions side by side in a single row. Use grid layouts to:

The screenshot below shows an example of a form using a grid layout:

Survey123 grid layout example

While grid layouts are not new to Survey123, this release introduces two enhancements:

Better support for nested groups and repeats

The use of nested groups (groups within groups) and repeats (a group of questions that can be entered multiple times) is common in complex forms. We have expanded the XLSForm syntax to help you better arrange these nested elements. You can now define the horizontal space (span) that a nested element should occupy in its containing group.

Two grid styles: Dynamic and fixed

Up until now the positioning of elements in a grid layout was always dynamic: Elements would automatically adjust to optimally fit questions within the screen. In many cases, this dynamic grid style works well, but sometimes it creates undesired effects. You can now choose to use a fixed grid style for either the entire form, or specific groups.

To learn more, check the Survey123 Tricks of the Trade: Groups, Grids and Pages and the Group section in the Appearances help topic.


Enhanced signatures


Signatures are often used for accountability and auditability. For example, when an auditor needs to sign-off some work, or when an inspector needs to certify the condition of an asset. Survey123 allows you to collect electronic signatures. Users are presented with a box to sign and the signature is saved as an image. Signatures from Survey123 are stored as  attachments. You can view them in web map popups, dashboards, and include them in Survey123 reports too!

This update includes some key improvements to signatures in the field app:

To learn all the details, check the Survey123 Tricks of the Trade: Signatures blog post.


Edit image annotations


Using Survey123, you can annotate photos, diagrams, and maps. In an asset inspection form, annotating a diagram of the asset can help highlight areas that need attention.  In a damage assessment form, you can use annotations to draw on top of a photo.

This release lets users select, move, delete, resize and reshape existing annotation graphics.  This provides more flexibility to annotate images accurately and effectively.

Survey123 smart annotation tools

More updates to the Survey123 annotation tools are coming in early 2022. Specifically, options to create custom annotation tools. This will let you tailor your tool palette to the specifics of your business workflow.  If you want to learn more, sign up for the ArcGIS Early Adopter Community and join the Survey123 beta testing opportunity. You will find documentation, forums, and beta builds of Survey123 version 3.14.


Various critical fixes and other enhancements



Next steps and learning more


We are aiming for more one 3.13 minor update before the end of the year. Just like this release, it will include some targeted enhancements and fixes. The next major update (version 3.14) will take place in early 2022.  If you want to learn more about road map features,  join the Survey123 beta through the ArcGIS Early Adopter Community.


For detailed description of what is new in this and previous releases, check the What’s New help topic in the Survey123 documentation.

About the author

Ismael Chivite joined Esri in 2002. A geographer by training, he loves helping people leverage GIS to improve the way they work. As a Senior Product Manager, Ismael is always looking for ideas to create new and improve existing Esri products. Outside working hours: Legos, rock climbing, Romanesque architecture and jamon iberico. On occasion, he enjoys jamon during working hours too.


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