Survey123 opening to black screen across devices

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04-10-2019 01:41 PM
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New Contributor II

While in the field in the last few days, I opened Survey123 several times on an iPad to see only a black screen.  Closed it out, re-opened...same thing.  A few cycles of closing and re-opening or restarting the app fixed the problem.  Just spoke with staff working in another part of the state, and all of them are experiencing the same issue on their iPads (and possibly phones, haven't confirmed yet).  Anyone else having this issue?  Any ideas on how to eliminate it?  Thank you.

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New Contributor II

I should add that these are surveys that have been in use for months, and this issue only appeared in the last week.  All devices are running the most current version of Survey123, unless a new one was released in the last few days.

Edit on 4/11/19: It seems this black screen issue has happened for 3-4 weeks, but infrequently.  In the last week it's started happening on all devices, multiple times per day.

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Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Cara,

Can you confirm what iPad/iPhone models (model number from About) and also what iOS version is installed? Do you see the same on Windows and Android, or just iOS?

Also confirm the exact Survey123 app version in use?

Does it happen when loading the app from complete close, or when opening the survey from gallery, if so is it all surveys or just one?

Have you tried closing the app completely, swiping up (or double press home button) and swipe app off screen, and then open Survey123 again?

Phil.

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New Contributor II

Hi Philip,

Thanks for your response.  I have not had confirmation of this occurring on any Android devices or seen it on my own, but I've seen it happen on my iPad.  All of the iPads are in the field except mine so I have model descriptions on them but not model # from About.  Here's what I know:

iPad A15566/Air 2 (6th gen.) - model MGLW2LL/A

A1822 / 9.7" 5th gen (wifi only)

A1538 / Mini 4 (wifi only)

A1893 / 9.7" 6th gen (wifi only)

A1893 / 9.7" 6th gen (wifi only)

All are running iOS 12.1.4 unless a field technician decided to upgrade to 12.2 on their own (unlikely).

All are running Survey123 version 3.3.64.

It is happening across a variety of surveys, not just from one.  Probably all surveys.

We're running Survey123 and Collector simultaneously at all times while in the field.

In my experience, it is happening when opening the app from the dock or from the app icon itself.  Double pressing the home button and then re-opening by selecting the Survey123 icon sometimes repeatedly got me a black screen, or sometimes it would show up again after 2-3 tries.  If it was still giving the black screen we'd shut everything down and then try again.

I haven't noticed any consistent way to resolve the issue--we just keep shutting down/re-opening until it works.  Even at max screen brightness it's very difficult to see the screen in bright sunlight, and we're working as quickly as possible while running these transects, so documenting troubleshooting isn't our first priority and I'm going off my recollection.  If I receive any responses on this occurring on Android devices or phones I will update this.

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Cara

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Esri Frequent Contributor

Thanks Cara,

We are not able to reproduce the issue in the iPad Air 2 we have here for testing and other iPad and iPhone models we use.  Can you provide any other information about when it happens?

What other apps are running at same time in background or foreground?

Does it happen after the device sleeps/locks and needs the pin entered again?

Are the devices managed by an MDM or have any other IT policies applied to them?

Did you manually change any of the Settings for device or apps that is consistent across all devices that have this issue?

Was the same black screen happen in version 3.2 or earlier? Did it only start with 3.3, or was it because of the 12.1.4 upgrade?

Phil.

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So, Philip-- are you planning to respond to the last posts by Cara and me?  I do not see any posting from you since April.  And if you read Cara's most recent post, she (and I) are getting pretty annoyed by this glitch.  I have multiple volunteers who have to use Survey123, and it is very frustrating to have to teach all of them how to jump through one more hoop in order to use an ESRI product.  (Can you tell I am not very happy with ESRI's attempts to produce products that non-GIS-specialists can use?)

Thank you.

Mike Leigh

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Frequent Contributor II

3.5 just came out today for Android.  On iOS it is still is not showing up.  3.5 is way better.  3.3 had lots of issues.  It is in TestFlight just not the app store yet.

I run a iPad 6th gen as does some of the crew.  We have not had any issues on any of the our 9 large forms.  One diff is our official tablets runners forced us to all update to 12.3.  12.3.1 is out but I have not tried it yet.

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New Contributor

We have been having the same problem on all three of our company's iPad mini 2 and on our iPad Air 2.  All have iOS 12.2 and the most recent versions of Survey123 (3.3.64) and Collector for ArcGIS.

The problem only appeared after upgrading to the newest versions of Survey123 and iOS, so I do not know which upgrade is causing the conflict.  The issue shows up repeatedly when opening Survey123 from complete close.  The only way to resolve it is to fully close Survey123 and reopen it (as suggested).  Very annoying, especially when the program is being used by unfamiliar volunteers. 

I have yet to be able to reproduce the problem on demand on the iPad mini 2s.  However, I just tried opening Survey123 on our iPad Air 2 and got . . . a black screen.  The only other program open on the device was Settings.

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New Contributor II

Thanks for the feedback, Mike.  It is annoying, especially considering the work we've done to ween our field crews away from paper records and towards digital as a better solution.  We're still experiencing the issue multiple times per day here, and haven't found any workarounds other than completely closing out Survey123.  Since it's the least of many frustrating issues we've had with offline data collection with Esri apps this year, I'm not even bothering with trying to document it any further.

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