Skip to main content

ArcGIS Online July Update: What's New - Part 1

Updates to ArcGIS Online are coming in the second week of July. In the first installment of this two-part series, you'll find technical details on what's being introduced to ArcGIS Online, including formal metadata, additional group capabilities for updating items, bulk group assignment and more.

Esri has planned updates to ArcGIS Online for the second week of July. In this update, you'll find many new enhancements and new functionalities, including the introduction of formal metadata, group capabilities for updating items, using custom print layouts from ArcGIS for Server and bulk assignment of users to groups. The update will also include enhancements to the map viewer, making organization administration easier and improvements to make your workflows more efficient. Let's take a closer look at the updates and their benefits to you.

Formal Metadata

Organizations will be able to make formal metadata available for their content. Formal metadata will allow content authors to provide more information about an item than what is available on the details page. It will also apply a style to support a metadata standard, such as ISO 19139 and the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC). For organizations that enable metadata, a metadata button will appear on details pages for all their item types. The button opens the built-in metadata editor and allows authors to create and edit metadata. It also allows anyone who has access to the item—including those items accessed from open data sites—to view and download the metadata.

Additional Group Capabilities for Updating Items

Administrators will be able to create groups that allow members of the group to update items shared with that group. These groups are useful for shift workers in operations centers who need to update maps underlying their apps and dashboards and other situations where multiple people need to update the same item. Updates to an item can include changes to the item details, tags, metadata and content. When you share an item with such a group, you remain the owner of the item and other group members can update the item. This will allow members, for example, to save a map after adding layers to it (resulting in an update to the map item's content). While all members of this group will be able to update the item, only the owner of the item can delete or share it. 

Bulk Group Assignment

Administrators will be able to assign new members in bulk to multiple groups as part of the invitation workflow for pre-established and automatically added accounts. In addition, administrators will be able to add existing members in bulk to multiple groups as part of a Groups configuration setting for the organization.

Custom Print Templates

Organizations will have the ability to use their own custom templates to print maps from ArcGIS for Server.

Map Viewer

  • You'll be able to search with all available resources or choose a single resource. The resources could be geocoders configured in the organization's utility services or searchable layers within the map.
  • You'll be able to add search results to a map notes layer. When you perform multiple searches, you'll have the option to add each location to the same layer or create a new layer for each result.
  • Access to layer options will be streamlined. Buttons for common actions, such as change style and show table, will appear directly under the layer name along with a button to open the full set of actions for the layer.
  • The sign-in experience will be enhanced so you can stay in the map viewer to sign in.
  • The New Map button will include a drop-down list of your recently viewed maps.


  • A new Analysis button will be added to the top of the map viewer to make it easier to find. The original "perform analysis" option will still be available from the layer menu.
  • It will be easier to discover and add specific Living Atlas layers optimized for analysis to your analysis workflow.
  • You'll be able to specify the starting points interactively for Create Viewshed, Create Watershed and Trace Downstream tools.
  • Find Hot Spots will be redesigned to be easier to use.

Hosted Feature Layers

  • A new set of data collection templates will be available for creating hosted feature layers to use with Collector for ArcGIS.
  • You'll be able to overwrite features in hosted feature layers published from CSV files with latitude and longitude (in addition to file geodatabase, Shapefile and GeoJSON files).

Organization Administration

  • Usage reports for subscriber content will be expanded to include landscape, imagery and historical maps.
  • Service credit reports for hosted feature layers will be enhanced to show usage from hosted feature and tile layers.
  • Organizations will be able to configure custom travel modes to use with directions and transportation-related analysis tools.
  • Organizations that use enterprise logins will be able to configure sign-in options for the organization's sign-in page to show only the enterprise login option or both the enterprise login and ArcGIS account sign-in options.
  • The Open Data setting will be enhanced to include more of the configuration workflow.

Scene Viewer

  • You'll be able to share scenes in the scene viewer by embedding a scene in a Web site or sharing it by email or through social media.
  • You'll be able to modify the appearance of your 2D or 3D polygons by extruding them up or down based on a value you give it in meters.
  • You'll be able to adjust and store sun setting when you create slides or when you save a scene. You'll be able to adjust the sun settings from the Environment button, create a slide and keep the sun setting and shadows you applied. When you want to save a scene, your environment settings will be stored and available to you when you open the scene again.
  • The scene viewer will be able to use the ArcGIS Pro navigation.
  • Enhancements to the Add Layers menu will make it easier to add and remove layers from your scenes.
  • The OpenStreetMap basemap will be supported for use in scenes.
  • The scene viewer will be available in Arabic and Hebrew.

The latest updates to ArcGIS Online will allow you to share Web scenes like the one above through the scene viewer by embedding a scene in a Web site or sharing it by email or through social media.

Workflow and Design

  • You'll be able to create Web apps from the map viewer using maps that have not been shared.
  • The Save button will appear in the map viewer when you're not signed in. When you click 'Save', you will be prompted to sign in, and the map viewer will check that you have privileges to create content before allowing you to save the map.
  • You'll be able to use a gallery to create hosted tile layers from existing hosted feature layers and create new, empty hosted feature layers.
  • The item details page of feature layers will have a new Tables section for listing any tables included in the layer.
  • The privilege to assign members to groups will allow you to remove members from a group.
  • The performance of My Content will be improved for managing a large number of items.
  • The workflow for changing your password will be enhanced and user names for ArcGIS accounts will be able to have up to 128 characters.
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan) and Traditional Chinese (Hong Kong) will be available as languages.
  • The name for simplified Chinese on the language drop-down menu will change from Chinese (Simplified Han) to Simplified Chinese.
  • Microsoft is ending support for older versions of Internet Explorer on certain operating systems on January 12, 2016. Because of this change in support, beginning with the December 2015 update, ArcGIS Online will no longer fix bugs specific to Internet Explorer 7 or 8, test those versions, or list limitations in help content. This includes the configurable app templates and the map viewer.

Check out the What's New section on the ArcGIS Online Help Web site for more information. Stay tuned for Part 2 in this series where we will explore updates related to ready-to-use apps available through ArcGIS Online.

This post was updated on July 23, 2015.