Multi-picture control, with draw layer and caption

Our multi-picture control is really easy to use. Just tap on the “Take Picture” or “Gallery” button and presto!  You can attach a photo to your form.  But you can also do the following:

  • Take as many pictures as you want
  • Draw on top of each picture using simple controls that let you point out things in the picture
  • Add a caption to each picture

Take a look at the animated gif below to get an idea how this works.

Controllable attributes

On the admin side, you can control the following attributes of the multi-image control:

  • How many pictures to allow the multi-picture control to add to the form.
  • The resolution of the pictures.  The default resolution is set at 40% but this value can be changed.  Note that setting the resolution to 100% means large upload time with high-end phones and more storage needs.
  • Whether to allow a draw layer or not.
  • Whether to allow captions or not.

The image below illustrates how you can edit the # of images and quality attribute from the form template designer screen.

In the screenshot above, the image field for this particular form is set up to save the image at 40% of actual resolution, and will allow a user to attach a maximum of 5 pictures per form.  Other attributes such as ability to draw on top of pictures and whether to suppress captions will be added to the form designer soon.

The original unedited image is saved

XForms stores a copy of the original unedited image.  So in case you want to clear the draw layer and start over, or if you want to view the original image, you can do that without having to take another picture.

Works on all devices (even on modern web browsers)

The multi-image control works on iOS, Android, and Windows Universal, on tablets as well as on smartphones.  It even works via our web app on modern web browsers (Safari, Chrome, FireFox, Edge) to attach images and draw on top of them, just like the native apps.

View the pictures in the web reporting dashboard

View the images on the reporting dashboard, individually as well as embedded in your form.

Just enough controls to make it easy and fast to use

The multi-image control in XForms isn’t going to win any design awards, or be used to annotate images with pixel-point accuracy.  That’s not the intent of this control.  It’s intent is to give the field user just enough control to snap an image and annotate it QUICKLY, and then get out of the way so that the field user can do their other duties.  Not to live in the app annotating something with a million different options.

Sometimes less is more, and in this instance, having fewer controls is a better experience than having a bunch of controls and options that will rarely get used and that will create a steeper learning curve.

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