Mobile Data Collection Apps for QGIS Projects

QField: Developed by a Swiss company OpenGIS, QField is an Android app that combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to get data from the field to the office comfortably and easily. Datasets can be locally stored or accessed remotely and synchronized using a sync plugin via WiFi, USB cable, or mobile network.

Input: Input has been developed by UK-based Lutra Consulting. This intuitive app uses a plugin called Mergin for data synchronization. A free Mergin account, which gives you 100MB of storage space, needs to be set up first. Input is available for both Android and iOS devices.

Both Input and QField allow the collection of points, lines, or polygons, and there are several attribute forms and widgets available within QGIS that would empower you to customize the data collection process. Suppose you set up a column called date and time. You can add the default ‘now,’ and it would auto-populate that column with the current date and time.

The apps support Display Tags and Map Themes that can be used to create an online and offline version of a map. “At the preparation stage, it’s common to use GeoPackage to format vector layers and set up a folder for MB tiles,”  “All of the data and the QGIS project file are transferred to your mobile device, so when you open up QField or Input, it looks exactly as it does in the desktop version of QGIS.”

Both apps also allow for visual attributions, which means you can take a picture and add a comment to it. And since the apps are undergoing rapid development, expect to see more features (such as snapping) getting added soon.

Post Originally Posted from: GeoAwesome

About the Author


Kumbirai is a 4th year Surveying & Geomatics students at the Midlands State University in Zimbabwe. He is also the Founder and Team Lead at African Surveyors Connect. He enjoys spending time writing web-applications and is more of a GIS enthusiast who mainly focuses and grew interests in Health and Land Administrative Applications of Geographic Systems.

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