So, I was at the UC and saw the Companion app. In fact, I’d heard about it at the 2017 UC and talked with some Esri folks who were going through Alpha with it. Anyway, I’ve read the blog post, understand the features. It’s cool.
What I don’t understand fully, is why? Everything the Companion app does, you can do through the browser in ArcGIS Online. I think the only thing I’ve latched onto so far that a browser wont natively support is biometric authentication.In which case, fine I guess but a whole native app for that? Wouldn’t it be better to just give the ArcGIS Online site a better mobile responsive design?
I really don’t mean for this to come off as negative. I’m just trying to understand the purpose dedicated native mobile app. Perhaps a public roadmap that layer out some of the planned features and capabilities would help?
It is great that there is now a way to easily and quickly do administrative tasks on a mobile device when away from a desktop computer. However, I agree with John's point that it seems like it would have made more sense to give ArcGIS Online a responsive web design, which seems to be fairly common these days, than to create and maintain a new native app.
What would be really cool, and leading the way, would be to give all of ArcGIS Online a responsive web design and enable progressive web app (PWA) functionality where appropriate. From what I understand, PWA support would even open up the possibility of bio-metric authentication for the ArcGIS Online website.
Great question. It reminded me of a meeting we had earlier in the year when the idea of the app was floated and discussed. In fact these are the questions any product team go through before creating a product or an app or a new feature as to why? Do we need one more of the same? Cant we take what we already have and also ask it to do xyz etc..
Thanks for the informative reply Sathya. A think a roadmap or list of planned features, capabilities or differentiators would be very helpful for those of us considering bringing the Companion app into our Enterprise. I'd much rather start early and get users accustomed to the general UX, but I'd need to know what's planned and on the roadmap in order to assess the value of bringing it on board.
I think it's worth it just for the biometric authentication. I hope this is coming in the other apps! Enterprise authentication in the apps is painful. It is very confusing for users. I also like having access to multiple things in one place (and I am not gen Z).