I'm struggling with this topic as I get more familiar with Collector. I've read the docs about offline maps and how all layers must be enabled for offline use and to a large degree, I understand what's being said and definitely see how sync'd data would be critical for things such as emergency response, etc.
It's really frustrating that one isn't able to bundle data that has been published as a REST service and is just needed for read only reference. If our organization has published layers such as parcels, wetlands, etc as a REST services for web maps, we can't consume them for Collector reference unless they have the Query/Sync options enabled. With our own data, it's not impossible to have those Query/Sync options enabled but what about other REST layers *publicly* available from other organizations? I'd really like the ability to include those layers as well.
Our state's Fish & Wildlife agency has an extensive fish distribution dataset that they've published as part of a web map application and my field staff would like to have that content available for reference while they're out in the (offline) field. We're not editing that data nor is that data getting frequent updates. The only way we can include that information is to obtain a copy, re-publish it for the sole purpose of the ability to include it in an offline package. How is this efficient?
What's the guidance here? Are there any changes/developments for Collector down the line to be more consumption friendly?
Hey, blast from the past. I hope you have better luck than me. I ultimately decided against using Collector and ended up just buying another Trimble Geo 7X and trusty 'ol Arcpad. Far too many cons for the AGOL/Portal/Collector workflow for me.
As for Arcpad, to quote Steve Jobs, "It just works."
I hear you, that's exactly the setup we have now (along with a XH) but with MS not making/supporting Windows Embedded anymore and ditto with ESRI for ArcPad we're thinking it's time to move on. Besides, both our units are flaking out after about 4 years. For us, since we're an ESRI shop with ArcGIS Server, with Collector I think the pros outweigh the cons.
Yeah. But Trimble's hardware is rock solid (the 7X is replacing a 13 year old XH) and Trimble will be supporting the 7X with parts & service for 7 years after its finally discontinued. That gets me close enough to retirement.
I'm also in the Pacific Northwest where trees and terrain are a factor so I wanted to retain my ability to post-process my captured data. Once again, that process was far easier under the old school workflow.