Fulcrum is a hosted mobile forms platform that enables you to build your own app for capturing information from the field
Price: from $18/month (30 days of trial)
Language: English / Spanish / French / Portuguese / Arabic / Turkish (the web interface is only in English)
Runs offline: yes
Last update: Android 25/01/2017 (v. 2.22.2) – iOS 26/01/2017 (v. 2.12.3)
Website of the developer: Fulcrum Mobile Solutions, LLC
Notes: article updated on 12/02/2017
Fulcrum is an application for field data collection that has as main features the ability to design your own app based on the information you need to monitor or the possibility to display the collected material in real-time (Standard and Professional plans). It also has option to work offline (it’s later synchronized) and highlights for its integration with other utilities such as CartoDB, Zapier or ArcGIS Online (see features according to payment plans. They also have open source API libraries available to developers).
The design of the application or, it would be better to say, form, is made from the web interface, opening previously a user account. Once this step is done, the application displays a scheme in which the main sections are listed. The creation of the application (“Create an app”) is done by dragging the blocks or fields that interests you to control up to the “Field settings” section, although you may select any of the pre-existing applications (these apps are in English, so if you want to use them as a starting point, you must edit them). Once you save the form, it is only necessary to synchronize the application to show it on the mobile device that will be used in data collection. It is worth mentioning that you can also enter data from the web application.
The designed forms can be edited even when are in use (be careful because if you change or delete any field initially defined, the data within are deleted). The web version, depending on the payment plan selected, also allows you to import and export different types of files (* .shp, * .xls, * .kml, etc.).
You can also add new members to a specific team or project , defining its role (owner, manager or standard user) and permissions.
Interestingly also the “webhooks” option that integrates application because it sends you push notifications warning you of changes in the data collected.
Images: Screenshots 14/03/2016 © Fulcrum Mobile Solutions, LLC
Data collection through specific apps has become a functionality that streamlines surveillance tasks, improving the procedures and saving paper. This is an option increasingly accepted by companies, as demonstrated by the success stories collected in the Fulcrum’s website. Currently, there are numerous options in the market, some of them already analyzed by this website such as myObservatory or even, CERES.
The Fulcrum app stands out for its intuitive interface to create forms and some of the options offered by higher payment plans (real-time display of information gathered, sharing data via URL, etc.), even though the services offered can be a bit expensive, because the minimum price indicated in the section “useful Information” is for a single user.