CommCare November Updates

Hi all,
We’ve been working hard the past few months to improve CommCare.  Here is a summary of some new CommCare mobile and web (HQ) features.
As always, please email the commcare-users google group if you have any questions or feedback.
CommCare Mobile


We just released CommCare 2.2!  Your Android phones will automatically update to version 2.2.  For Nokia and other J2ME phones, version 2.2 is now an option in the CommCareHQ app builder.  We have been releasing a new mobile version of CommCare every month, and plan to continue monthly releases for the foreseeable future.
CommCare 2.2 has several bug fixes to improve stability.  It also has some new features:
Nokia phones (J2ME)

  • Question audio stops playing automatically when you move to the next question
  • Moved common superuser tools (Network test, check for updates, etc) to a tools menu accessible from the login screen.  These tools used to be accessible only to admin users.
  • Revised OTA Restore/Sync screens: we reworked this screen to give you a better indication of what the restore is doing
  • Major speed improvements to handling fixture fetches and itemsets inside of forms

Android phones (CommCare ODK)

  • Improved style and readability for the case details screen: we reformatted the case list and details screen to display information more clearly and cleanly
  • Login screen now remembers last logged in username, so the user only has to type in their username the first time they log into that phone.
  • Improved resume: If you navigate out of the CommCare application, CommCare now is much better at restoring your place in the app when you return to the application during the same session
  • Removed “Sync with Server” checkbox from home screen: Auto-syncing is now handled more robustly, and the offline login process works more consistently.
  • Improved loading of long case lists: For longer case lists, the case list screen loads initially with a loading icon in the list area.  This allows you to press back, type a search, etc without having to wait for the case list to load first.





It has been a while since we last updated you on the new CommCareHQ features.  Going forward, we plan to give you a feature update every month.
Here are the main new features you may have noticed recently on CommCareHQ:

  • Saved reports: You can now save certain reports that you view frequently as “favorites”.  HQ will remember the report as well as the filters you set up, and set up an easy to access link to this report from CommCareHQ’s main Reports page.
  • Email reports improvements: you can now configure email reports from most of your saved reports.  New advantages:
  • ability to configure emailed reports filtered by mobile user group
  • greater flexibility with email report date ranges
  • ability to configure email reports to be sent to other web users, not just yourself
  • Form Designer Redesign: redesigned the layout of our form designer (vellum) to take better advantage of available screen space
  • Application Summary button:  Now on the application page there is an “application summary” button that outlines the question content in your application.
  • Export form contents improvements: You can export an excel specification of the form by going to “advanced” in the form designer.  We’ve often found this useful when communicating application content to team members who may not be familiar with CommCare.  We have made this specification more comprehensive and user friendly.
  • Usernames on build comments:  Now when you make a new build in the release manager, it is tagged with your web user name.
  • Reports filters redesign: Now your worker monitoring/data inspection reports load with no data initially.  You choose your desired filter  and then hit “apply”.  We did this so that if you have a lot of users submitting data, you don’t have to wait for the whole report to load before choosing the filter you are interested in.
  • Pending web user invitations:  After you invite a web user to HQ, we show them as “pending” until they accept.
  • Itemset support: Our form designer Vellum now supports hand-writing xml itemsets into your form.  This means Vellum now recognizes the question that allows a user to assign a case to one of the many groups they’re in.  (This is useful for the “supervisor” use case where your supervisor also creates cases!).  You still have to insert this question by hand, though.  See documentation here:
  • Case list display format additions: the case list/detail configuration now includes the display format “time since date”.  You can configure a date in your case list or detail screen to show up as however many days, weeks, months, or years ago the date was from today.
  • SMS install for CCODK: You can now install via SMS on CommCareODK!  (Under the same menu for install on J2ME).  This only works for builds you made recently, and may not work in some countries.
  • completion vs submission time report:  We have a new report that compares the submission time to completion time to help you evaluate any delay between  form completion and submission.
  • Bulk form/custom export: You can now download multiple form submission or multiple custom exports at once rather than one at a time
  • Sort case list by date on the phone: We added a feature on HQ that will ensure you can sort your case list by date correctly on the mobile phone
Happy November,



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