Does anyone have tablet recommendations for using Collector offline? I am interested in GPS Accuracy, and tablet reliability. Also, any other "lessons learned" with the use of Collector with a tablet.
We currently do not map this way here at the city, but here's a little advice, definitely get yourself a R1 Bluetooth receiver. A standalone tablet will not be accurate enough for sufficient mapping.
Maybe contact Erin Fashoway at the Montana State Library, when she worked at MDT, she dealt a lot with the different tablets and could tell you lessons learned from the road inventory collection projects.
I am using a cheap Verizon tablet, and have had trouble with GPS. The location icon freezes, and I have to open another map in order to get it to work. Not sure if its the app or the tablet.
This summer I purchased a Mesa 2 tablet from Juniper Systems and have been pleased with it. The battery life will last all day, plus the ability to 'hot swap' the battery during very long days is certainly a plus as well. The screen is one of the easiest to see in bright sunlight of the tablets I have used. It can be used with fingertips as well as a stylus. It is 'ruggedized' so is waterproof, shockproof, etc. It has a 'rain mode' which I have not tested but seems like it could be a useful feature. We have been satisfied with the accuracy of the internal GPS, but we are also purchasing an external bluetooth to increase the reliability of that accuracy. Check out the specs on the web. We're very happy with it . ..
I would stay away from tablets from Mobile Demand or ruggedtabletpc.com. We got a semi-rugged one and neither Collector or Avenza see the GPS. Their support staff gave us software to test GPS functionality and it works, they refuse to troubleshoot it anymore as they blame the software we are trying to use. We are buying a Mesa 2 (as Phil mentioned) soon for another project. I have used Collector fairly regularly and the only problem I had required every AGOL map that I used Collector with to be recreated, still no clue what happened and Esri was not of any help there either. I have heard of others having trouble with it failing to sync with lots of attachments, so if possible sync regularly although I have not experienced this. The GPS accuracy (stated by Juniper) is 2-5m which is sufficient for most things but could be made much more accurate (submeter) with the purchase of a Trimble R1.
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