New colors for increased contrast

After updating the colors on our generic product (XForms Mobile), we’ve now updated the XForms Cx mobile app with a similar color scheme. One that matches the XForms color palette, and which make the app easier to see in bright sunlight.  So instead of maintaining the light blue colors the app used before, we are now using orange, black, and grey, with some purples and greens too.  Here’s what that looks like in light mode:

Automatic dark mode switching

This new version of the mobile app also includes a dark mode that follows your OS dark mode settings.  The colors are similar to light mode, with different contrast.  Take a look.

How to enable dark mode

To enable dark mode, you need to go to your device’s settings, search for “dark mode”, and set your options there.  Default settings for dark mode are usually to turn it on at sunset and turn it off at sunrise, but you can set it to whatever you want, or manually switch from one mode to another.  You can even do this on laptops.

On an iPhone, go to Settings > Appearance (Display & Brightness) and then make your settings changes there:

Why these color changes matter

It feels weird to say this, but most software development teams don’t have real-world field experience.  They’ve rarely if ever been on a jobsite on a ridiculously hot and sunny day in Texas with 113°F temperatures that make it feel like you are inside an oven, trying to get shit done while simultaneously trying to enter information into a tiny phone screen.  The reflection from the sun on the phone’s glass makes it even more difficult to view that screen, and if you leave it out too long in direct sunlight, the LCD screen darkens due to overheating.  Try entering motor megger information into screens you can barely see because the color contrast isn’t sharp enough, and you will thank the developers that thought about color contrast when designing the system.  So yea, this stuff matters.  Sometimes its the little things…

…reminds me of why driving a Tesla is so pleasurable…the user experience is amazing.  Like did you ever think of why they put the charging port on the back drivers side of the car?  IAmong other reasons, it’s so that you back into the charging station…so that you have something to look at instead of a wall of chargers.

Likewise, we are trying to make the field crews’ experience entering commissioning data into mobile devices an amazing experience, not a shitty one.  Hence why the color change and sticking with a minimalistic UI even as the app features improve.

View and share PDF of submitted form

We’ve also added the ability to view and share the PDF version of a submitted form directly from the mobile app.  To access, navigate to any submitted form, tap on it to load the PDF.  Once it loads, you can share it in all the ways your smartphone provides: by text message, email, copy/paste, or by app.

Date picker via calendar

The date picker is different now.  It will default to TODAY and display a calendar instead of a scroll wheel.

Improved offline mode

Updates have been made to the offline mode feature of the mobile app.  These include some bug fixes and improvements in the behavior of cached files.  A new “download all” switch has also been added to the “sync offline data” screen.

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