Access on mobile devices

Mobile users can access REDCap on any iPhone, iPad or Android phone or tablet with an internet browser.

On most tablets, the default view is the same as a desktop computer.

On most phones, the default view is REDCap mobile. Not all features are available in this view, but you can switch to desktop view at any time to get the full use of REDCap.

Offline Data Capture

If you don’t have internet access, you cannot use online REDCap. In such a situation, there are three potential methods to collect data for use in REDCap later. Those three methods are described below.

The lack of internet coverage in remote areas could be a significant challenge to using REDCap. There are absolutely success stories in similar situations. We know of several studies operating REDCap in the field in South Africa and in rural areas of South America. But only you can determine which of the following options is feasible for your work.

  1. The REDCap mobile App can be downloaded to any mobile device (e.g. smart phones, tablets) and used for offline data collection. It’s available in both Android and Apple app stores. The App is a true data collection tool; it has REDCap’s primary functionality, just offline. (It’s therefore slightly more limited functionality to online REDCap.) The App can ‘sync’ your offline data back to your real REDCap project when you return to internet connectivity. The ‘sync’ is a mass import of all the data you collected while offline. The App can send that back to your online REDCap project.
  2. Data can certainly be stored in another format and then uploaded into REDCap when the internet connection is reliable. This can be another alternative – to temporarily store the data in another file type and then transfer into REDCap incrementally. Though not ideal, you use another program offline (or even have paper copies of the instruments) to collect data in areas of low internet coverage. You could then enter that data in REDCap when the connection is more stable and use REDCap for an electronic record and to prepare the data for analysis.
  3. Depending on your specific project, you might also be able to invest in purchasing a portable wireless router to act as an internet hotspot and enter data online in the field. This would allow you full use of the application from any low-coverage area. REDCap is accessible from any device having internet access, including the browsers of any smart phones or tablets (no mobile App needed here). By providing your own internet access, the data could be stored securely (and directly in REDCap) from the start and there’s no need to transfer it from hard copies later.

REDCap Mobile App

The REDCap Mobile App is an app that is installed on a tablet or mobile device so that data can be collected offline on that device. Data collected offline is later synced (i.e. uploaded) back to an online REDCap project.

Once a user is given ‘REDCap Mobile App’ privileges in a project, they can navigate to the Mobile App page on the left-hand menu and set up the project inside the app on their device. Once the project is set up on the device, the user can collect data (which is stored locally on the device). Users can later sync (i.e. upload) that data back to their project when they have a reliable internet connection.

The app is therefore most useful when data collection will be performed where there is unreliable or no internet service (e.g., no WiFi or cellular service).

Additional Documentation:

Download iOS app
Download Android app
About the REDCap Mobile App (PDF)
Security in the REDCap Mobile App (PDF)