eBird Mobile for Android was released about a week ago. I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 on hand, so I downloaded it for a test run. First impression – looks superficially similar to the iOS app and gets the job done by allowing Android users to submit observations from the field, but is different in a few ways. The process for submitting a checklist is similar to that of BirdLog, but seems a bit more clunky than the iOS app, which is smooth and streamlined.
The app follows this workflow (be sure to click on the photos in the gallery for a blown up screenshot of each step):
- Start a checklist – easy and simple.
- Choose a location – choose from a recent location, location from a map, create a offline checklist, choose a new personal location, choose a nearby hotspot, search hotspots by place, or choose a nearby personal location.
- A cool feature of this app, which is faster than it is in the iOS app, is that you can easily switch between list and map view when choosing a nearby hotspot.
- Choose date and time of checklist – this is a bit more clunky than it is in the iOS app, but is easy enough.
- Tallying species is as easy as tapping the area left of the species name. Doing so will give a “one” count for each tap and increase with additional taps. When actually tapping on a species to add details or high numbers, I was a bit turned off. There is a line for number observed, a box for choose “X” (which no one should do ever), and a comments section. I’m not sure why, but this feature in the iOS app seems much simpler and more appealing to the eye. This could be due to differences in iOS and Android systems. Additionally, there are tabs for all species ever recorded and also a “checked” species tab.
- Review and submit – the normal info, including are you submitting a complete checklist, observation type, number of observers, duration, distance, and checklist comments. The only thing missing here is the list of “checked” species, which is on the same page in the iOS app. Also, there is no tab/button on the screen to go back to the list of species. You have to use the phone’s “back” function.
Overall, I am very happy with this app from Team eBird. I look forward to future updates that make the app less clunky and hopefully more similar to the iOS app.