WebApp Builder, Friend or Foe?

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10-02-2014 06:12 AM
EricCarroll
New Contributor II

So I have been recently beta testing the new WebApp Builder to see if it will be suitable for a couple of projects that are upcoming. I am going to couple it with the power of Data Collector to create a rich application that will allow our Supervisory Staff to visualize updated and relevant information about our schools. This will include maintenance work orders, security concerns, electronic equipment tracking and repair work orders, building modifications or suggested modifications to the landscape, security features, evacuation procedures etc.  This application will also allow law enforcement to see a real time view of the security cameras within the school should there be an incident.

I am curious to know if any of you have run into limitations with the WebApp Builder, or if you have any high praises to sing about it?

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9 Replies
RobertScheitlin__GISP
MVP Esteemed Contributor

Eric,

   Some limitation that you should be aware of (currently).

  1. There is no out of the box support for using your own ArcGIS Server (AGOL WebMap is required).
  2. The editor widget does not work on many mobile devices.
  3. This is new product on it's initial release so it is going to have some issues and room to grow.

I am sure other can add to this list but these are just some that stand out.

TimWitt2
MVP Regular Contributor

Eric,

Most of the complaints I have are related to it being very new.

1. At the moment there aren't many layouts to chose from, unless you want to invest the time to code your own.

2. There are some nice widgets that you can include in your webapp but I don't think enough.

3. The help file is still missing a lot of things or is unclear.

The good:

1. Once ESRI gets really rolling, it will be very easy to use and you will need minimal javascript experience.

2. The layouts they do have are very slick and look modern.

3. Setting up an App is very fast.

4. You can customize almost everything if you have javascript experience.

5. It is easy to integrate 3rd party widgets/themes.

Hope this helps!

Tim

CA_-_ReneGonzalez__GISS_
New Contributor III

Eric,

So far the only issues I have experienced with the WebApp builder is the ability to share with the public. Like other AGOL web maps, if everything (map, data, ect...) is shared with the public, then anyone with the link can access the map.

Unfortunately, with the WebApp builder, you will need an AGOL organization account to access the public shared map. Even though everything is shared with the public, including the App, you will still need an AGOL account to access the map.

Hope this helps!

Jianxia
Esri Regular Contributor

Rene,

This is not true. It depends on how the public app is accessed. If everything is shared with the public, the app is available through public link www.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer, then everyone should be able to view it. However, if it is available through the org link (custom link), such as http://esridevbeijing.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer, then login is required regardless it is public or not.

We are reviewing current pubic share pattern. Let's know if you have any suggestions regarding this.

Thanks,

Jianxia

CA_-_ReneGonzalez__GISS_
New Contributor III

Jianxia,

Thank you for the tip. I noticed that if I shared it through arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer, none of my hyperlinks are visible on the banner. Can that only be accessed if shared through the org link?

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Jianxia
Esri Regular Contributor

Rene,

The visibility of hyperlinks on the banner should have nothing to do with the org link. I assume the hyperlinks are set through the Attributes tab->Links. As a test, I created following app and was able to see the hyperlink (org) on the banner which is accessed only by the org link.

App:

http://www.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=5d597c22b0214368b9d1c8a5bf04b4fe 

Hyperlink (org) on the banner

(http://esridevbeijing.maps.arcgis.com/home/item.html?id=5b9a674043ca4ec783b7eb85037aefa8

I may not understand your workflow. It would be great if you can provide us details or share your app.

Thanks,

Jianxia

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FrankPisani
New Contributor

Jianxia,

I have found this workaround to be successful today. Under this workflow is it possible to share this item via a public gallery?

.

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Jianxia
Esri Regular Contributor

Frank,

As public gallery only contains Esri Featured Content and the app created by Web AppBuilder belongs to an org, It is not available in the public gallery.

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WayneHa
New Contributor

Actually I share the same experience with Rene.

I'm experiencing different results in app sharability when publishing via different templates:

If I were to publish a Feature Layer (containing restrictive content) via WebApp Builder with everything made public, my audience reports seeing unsuccessful launches.

But instead publishing via stock template (such as Basic View), all restrictions seems to be lifted and the app is viewable by all external audiences.

Any ideas why?

Happy to share the example with an Esri CM.