Option to not use UTC time offset in ArcGIS Online

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01-22-2013 02:21 PM
MattKennedy
Esri Contributor
Is it possible for ArcGIS Online to have an option to display date fields using local time instead of UTC time?  It is fine to store the dates in UTC, but it would be helpful if dates/times could be displayed in local time.  Perhaps AGOL organizations could have a time zone setting that organization administrators could opt to set.  This would be especially helpful for users/organizations that don't have cross-time zone issues to face, and want to see times and dates in the only time zone they ever work in.  Thanks.
37 Comments
JasonFitzsimmons

ESRI absolutely should give an option to show dates in local time on ArcGIS Online. Frankly, I can't believe this feature isn't offered.  For us working in municipal government (in other words, very local), the correct date and time is crucial for our viewer apps.  As other people have noted in this thread, the default UTC time can change the actual date as it was entered.  Our apps are used daily by inspectors and planners where the date is of upmost importance, who do not want to hear that they need to add a day to every date given in the popup windows.  Setting a timezone in one or two fields is not sufficient at all for us, and actually would only add to confusion to have a couple fields in local time, while the rest remain in UTC (we frequently have datasets with multiple date columns).  Manually creating a text field or another date field using Field Calculator could work i suppose, but that seems like a pretty absurd workaround to what should be a simple issue.

TomManson

Is there a way to do this through code? Using the helpful script here only puts time/date fields in UTC. I need to specify UTC London/Dublin and adjust for daylight savings.

BillFox

Or worse, the year we moved Daylight Saving Time 3 weeks in the Spring and Fall, to save power.

ENERGY POLICY ACT OF 2005

And this great video of "Time" issues

The Problem with Time & Timezones - Computerphile

Useful link for students to an esri help document about time zone math including an AGOL tool.

ESRI's Time zones—what time is it anyway?

Map URL: http://esriurl.com/fourgeoinquiry2

AndrewMcKinney1

The new functionality that was added to allow you to pick the time zone works great when first adding the data. However, when you  go to use the Update Data >> Overwrite Entire Layer option it doesn't ask for the timezone again and resets it to UTC.

BrianFausel

Vote up for this (really old) idea! The setting for time zone should be in the AGOL feature service properties somewhere. You should not have to re-publish the service to change it.

StephanieLeusink

It would be extremely useful to be able to publish data that contains time/date fields and not have the UTC conversion (or any conversion) automatically applied. We have users that collect field data on projects across many time zones, and when they view the data, it is quite frustrating and confusing for them to always have to think about what time zone they were in at the time of collection, and what time zone they are in right now. When writing reports, it's more helpful for them to be able to look at the data and remember that they collected that point at 9am on that specific date in the local time of the field site - not seeing it converted to the timezone of the office they are sitting in while viewing the data which might be telling them they collected the data at 5am instead.

TimMinter

I concur with the OP and probably with a lot of the posts I didn't read.  I frequently need for the time that is displayed in ArcGIS Online and ArcGIS Enterprise to be the same as the time value in the source data... for business purposes.  Enabling time on the layer and in the service adds other complexities that don't get me toward a solution consistently.  Thumbing up this one.

TimMinter

Oh, wait...  I see that a lot of customers have wanted this for a long time.  I guess I should just forget it and move on.

ChristinaMiller

This is very critical to the Municipality of Anchorage.  I concur and it needs to apply to ArcGIS Enterprise portal as well.  The end result of the application changing the date time fields is if you are accessing the data from a different location, you are getting an incorrect answer.  The editor needs to be able to pick a date and have the option to be confident that the date entered by the editor will be the one that is always displayed no matter where you are accessing the information.

LeviCecil

This is also a problem with AGOL maps in Collector. I publish the maps from Pro in local time, but when I make edits in Collector, the edit time shows up in the SDE feature class as UTC.