Ability to Take Multiple Photos (Rapid Fire)

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30 comments

  • Official comment
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    Joe Vetoe (Edited )

    The new Multi-Photo element is now available! The Multi-Photo element allows a user to rapidly take several photos at one time within the same element. Some of the main features of the Multi-Photo element include:

    • The ability to take multiple photos within a single element.
    • Not having to confirm after each photo is taken.
    • Users can take photos and upload them from the device gallery within the same element.

    These improvements will help speed up image collection with a more streamlined experience.

    PLEASE NOTE: As of June 14, 2022, the Multi-Photo element is in Phase 1 and it is currently in beta. Please test your use cases thoroughly before rolling out live to the field. We would also love to hear your feedback and what you like about the Multi-Photo element and what you'd love to see in future phases. 

    The Multi-Photo element is available for the following clients:

    • iForm for iOS 9.22
    • iForm for Android 9.16
    • Webforms 3.1
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  • Avatar
    Lucas

    Hi Ben,

    We would also request this feature.  We often do inspections where we require multiple images of a single location to be taken and then move on to the next location and do the same.

    Our form currently requires:

    1. a tap to enter into the form,

    2. a tap to enter into the photo widget,

    3. a tap to choose camera or photo library (Android) and we would like to keep this function,

    4. a tap to take the photo (unavoidable),

    5. a tap to accept the photo (android - probably also unavoidable),

    6. a tap to accept the photo (iform),  The user then fills out the rest of the subform data if required.

    7. a tap to select Done to finish the record,

    8. a tap to re-enter the photo widget    (the form is running in Batch Mode to eliminate the having to re-enter the subform).

     

    What we would really like is: 

    1. a tap to enter sub-from and land directly at request to use camera or photo widget (I have a feature request put in already and Le likes my idea :P  https://iformbuilder.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360019636431-Skip-direct-to-image-widget-inside-subform)

    2. a tap to then select the library and then a few taps to select multiple images from the library and add to record or select Camera and take 5-7 photos (as many as the user wants as you said above)

    3. a tap to then exit the camera/library and have the user to fill out any other info from the sub-form

    4. a tap to then finish the record with Done.

     

    All our engineers keep asking if we can have the same camera functionality as a standard digital camera for the image element.  You said it best with Rapid Fire.

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    Andrew Patman

    We would also really like the functionality as described by Lucas above.

    Andrew

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  • Avatar
    Lucas

    Any update on the development of this feature?

    Thanks

    Lucas

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  • Avatar
    Lucas

    Hi,

    Trying to bump this thread.  This would be an invaluable feature and really make the iform usable for photo heavy inspections.

    We are getting reports from inspectors that less photos are being taken due to the labor intensive process of clicking between screens to capture multiple shots of the same area.

    Is there any chance this is on the roadmap for development?

    Thanks

    Lucas

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    Rebekah Stevens

    Thanks Berit! I have had some requests from users to stamp that info on the photo itself. It would be helpful if that was an option in the photo widget.

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    Gabriel Granger

    I would also like to see this feature added, the site visits/inspections we do are very photographic in nature and anything that speeds up the process/reduces the step/taps required by the inspector to take multiple photos in short succession would be a massive bonus.

    Kind regards, 

    Gabe

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    Negroni Santos, Douglas

    Hi. 

    Yes, rapid fire would help speed up lengthy inspections. 

    1- enter the data

    2- take multiple pictures of the damage in succession 

    Done!! 

    The other feature that i find related is upload from the tablets gallery.

    1- enter the data

    2-  select multiple pictures from the gallery in one step

    Thanks.

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  • Avatar
    Lucas

    Hi Ben,

    The feature as you describe in the screen shots is exactly what we are after.  Multiple photos attached to a single record.

    Look forward to seeing this in action.

    Cheers

    Lucas

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  • Avatar
    Lucas

    Hi Ben,  

    A little feedback from the team after we put the new multi photo element to the test in the field.

    It is great in that it makes the workflow much more efficient and smooth.

    However the fact that the native camera app of the device is not being utilised it makes it difficult to use in multiple situations.

    The main concerns from our team are:

    1. You can only do 2 levels of digital zoom. Cannot use the full capabilities of the devices camera.

    2. You can't use volume buttons to take photos.  This is a big one because the guys often have to take photos in awkward positions and don't always have two hands to reach the phone.

    3. You can't change the camera focus via screen touch and there is no AF lock and the multi photo element picks the focus point

    4. No way to change exposure

     

    All of these issues are not present in the single photo element as it appears to use the native camera app?  Any chance the mulitphoto element can be upgraded to use the native camera app too?

     

    Thanks

    Lucas

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    Rebekah Stevens

    Yes! We get this request frequently. We do also like to have the option to add a caption when taking photos (text field in the subform) but making this process faster would be really helpful. I basically see two use cases, one where they go from photo to next photo, the other where they go from photo to caption to next photo.

    We also have users ask if the photos themselves can be tagged with metadata (date/time, x,y)

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  • Avatar
    Berit Weymers

    Hi Rebekah,

    I wanted to make sure you knew that if you download an image on your computer it does currently include image meta data. 

    Image Meta Data: Images can retain meta data that will be embedded in the image. The meta data will retain information about the photo itself, such as location, time, device etc...  Information can vary between devices.

    Note: This only works with images that are taking through the app, meaning it won't work if you upload an already stored photo on the device.

    Are you looking to have the image meta data in a feed or something else?

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  • Avatar
    Ben Ray

    Thanks for the feedback Rebekah much appreciated. So for the flow where you take a photo then enter a caption I assume you are using a subform now with multiple paging. The challenge now is that once you take the photo you have to click on the caption to enter the text there. What do you think of us having a next button on the photos element so you can hop easily from the photo to the next element?

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    kristy Craggs

    Just wondering if this function is available yet where you can add multiple photos at a time to your form?

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    Ben Ray

    Hi Kristy this feature is not yet available. We are working through the community feature requests in terms of top voted features(up arrow beside the main post). Getting this topic more votes will push this timeline closer.

    Use this link to see the feature requests in terms of votes - https://iformbuilder.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/topics/200091460-iFormBuilder-Feature-Requests?sort_by=votes

    Thanks!

    -Ben

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    Ben Ray

    Hi All, I wanted to provide an update on this as this functionality is something we are planning on tackling here in 2021. Please see the attached file for the first mockup of how this may work.  Thank you in advance for your feedback as it will be greatly valued when we design this functionality in the coming year.

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    Gabriel Granger

    Hi Ben, 

    Really excited to see movement on this functionality, currently I have a subform called "Photos and Labels" which my inspectors use to add photos and labels as they walk around their site.  The way we use this allows for a specific number(Maximum) of photos depending on where in the form because this has to match the corresponding area on the word template we use to generate the PDF report.  With "rapid-fire" would this create individual records in a subform so that labels could be added to each photo afterwards or would this be a single record with multiple items (photos) in it?

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    Ben Ray

    Hi Lucas,

    Thanks for the feedback. Out of curiosity is there a max number of photos you would expect that would be attached to each record. As we work through the research on this we are trying to decide if we will be putting a limit on the number of photos and if so what that limit would be.

    Gabe thank you for the feedback as well. The current plan is to have this associated with a single record. However, I do also see this as a popular flow that users follow (Photos with comments). Can you please share how you are doing this currently and any improvements that you would like to see to that flow so we can consider them?

    Thanks!

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    Gabriel Granger

    @Ben Ray

    For me, having a point and shoot method which dumps the photos into separate records would allow users to come back and label everything afterwards, i.e when a house inspection is being completed, the inspector walks around the premises and into each room and takes a few photos.  Being able to go into a section of the form where you can just "point and shoot" would allow them to just walk around and snap photos quickly and get out, they can then flick through the records and add labels afterwards.

    The other advantage of separate records for each photo is having the ability to remove the photo from the form, sometimes the inspector forgets the tablet is open and take a photo without realising, or as is the case on another form I need to be able to limit the number for photos for each section of the form(just because the inspector wants to take 20 photos doesn't mean I want 20 photos in the report), having photo and label as records means they can be counted and logic used to prevent the user from continuing until they are under the record limit I set.

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    Gabriel Granger

    @Ben Ray, 

    I would be happy to quickly walk through how we use photos and our templates if that would be helpful

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    Lucas

    Hi Ben,

    I would think 10 should be more than adequate but of course if its possible no limit would be better.

    Our templates are dynamic cause they work using macros that fire when the output word document is opened.  So they can handle as many images as the user takes.

    We can handle all images as a single record or multiple records, I believe we can process both, as long as the record structure for the element is similar to a sub form element.

     

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    Adam Rawlinson

    Hi Ben,

    We have a few requirements here that we would like to be considered:

    1. Number of photos: we have a requirement to have a max and min, number of photos. In some cases we want two photos to be taken (exactly 2!) and in others we have a range (minimum of 1 but no more than 10, for example). We would therefore think a configurable max/min would be preferred so we can precisely define the number of photos to be taken.

    2. Easy management: Once photos are taken, we should be able to easily manage them. For example, add captions, review an individual photo full screen, mark it, delete it. We think it would be better to have an interface whereby you have a simple take photos and then a separate screen to manage photos once they’re taken. Process would ideally be, click to take photos, take all photos using rapid fire, app takes you back to main form, select manage photos icon to manage photos and then we get a richer experience more like the gallery you show in your workflow (similar to native gallery app). This keeps the workflow for capture fast and simple, but allows for greater control and reviewing of the quality of the photos before submitting.

    3. Maintain option to disable from gallery.

    4. Captions: can captions be configurable? In some cases we would want captions and in others not. A simple enable captions in form design on the element would be nice.

    5. Simpler interface in parent form: would be nicer if the interface to take photo isn’t he parent form was more like a select element where you would have three icons, take photo, choose from gallery, manage photos. We assume that you would not have a sub form for these photos and they would all be stored against the parent?

    6. storing of photos: can we make sure that if we have multiple rapid fire photo elements, the photos taken in that individual element only show photos from that element? It’s important as we take photos at multiple stages in the process and it’s important that the photos pertain to that stage of the process.

    Overall, for us there are 2 main requirements:
    - speed of taking photos (considering less clicks in the whole process of taking photos)
    - review/manage photos process: to maintain quality of photos and data captured

    We feel this would keep it logical for the user but also ensure it’s a quick process. We also feel using a gallery style interface for managing photos will be more relatable for users and easier for training.

    Happy to discuss more if necessary!

    Cheers,

    Adam

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    Berit Weymers

    Hi All,

    We have been working hard on the new Multi-Photo element and will be demoing it on tomorrow's webinar. If you haven't signed up yet, please do! Here is the link. We are excited to hear your feedback.

    Berit

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    Darius Grimes

    Comments from webinar:

    if its not useable with Zerion Documents (WebMerge)? Need to know when that will work because without it we can't use it for much.

    Many Apps have the ability to turn on GPS Date/Time stamps that appear on the photos, this would be a great enhancement as verification of site specific photos is becoming a more important requirement.   

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    Rebekah Stevens

    I agree with all of Adams requirements, especially #2. A couple related requirements:

    1. Need to be able to upload the data quickly and not have the sync break when there is poor connectivity. For example, with the current photo element, if you place too many on a single form the upload time is significant and if connectivity breaks it is a significant effort to restore the complete record. When you move the photo element to a subform that allows multiple records, if connectivity breaks it just picks up where it left off when it connects again as it uploads each photo as its own record.
    2. Optional caption, direction facing when taking the photo, lat/long, and date/time would be really helpful as part of the form data so that you can use in analysis/reporting AND as a customizable stamp on the photo. It would be ideal if everything except the caption could pull directly from the device.
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    Darius Grimes

    can you add me to the test flight beta, thanks

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    Joe Vetoe

    Hi, Darius

    For 9.22, it is now available through the App Store so you can go there as a normal user and update it.

    To join or beta program (which you definitely should!) you can follow these instructions.

    Be sure to let us know what you think or if you have any questions.

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    Darius Grimes

    what is the redeem code for TestFlight?

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    Darius Grimes

    nvr mind I got it

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    Darius Grimes (Edited )

    With technology, the ability to verify "site specific" is becoming more important. Verification of documentation location, time, and date is an important audit feature with many uses. This would be a great feature for all of the image elements in iFB.

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