The best way to understand the different question types is to open up the Sample Form which has a question of each type

Text

A text field. Allows you to enter free text as the data input.

The mobile and web client will allow you to enter as much text as you want, and it will get saved to the database. However, you will not be able to process responses greater than 255 characters (i.e. you will see the red warning for unprocessed data and you will not be able to see your responses in the Dashboard). See Known Issues for further information.

Number

Accepts integers or whole numbers – so 1235 is valid but 12.23 is not. Negative numbers are accepted. Only ne

There is a limit to the size of integer accepted that is documented here as with Text a number longer than 10 digits will be accepted and saved, it just can’t be exported by default.

Decimal

Accepts numbers including numbers with decimals like 123.345

Date

Accepts a date.

On the mobile client, a prompt with a Select Day option will be available that takes the user to a calendar, the exact format depends on your phones settings
On the web form, a pop-up calendar will appear

The display and submit Date Format can be changed through the Admin Console -> Settings

Time

Accepts a time.

On the mobile client the format is HH:MM or HH:MM AA (where AA = am or pm) – depending on your phone settings
On the web form the format is HH:MM:SS AA

The display and submit Time Format can be changed through the Admin Console -> Settings

Date and Time

Both Date and Time must be recorded for one question answer

Boolean

Yes / No – user must select one or the other. Using this is the same as creating a Single Select question with two options "Yes" and "No." It is a useful shortcut for english forms, but as the Yes and No are not editable it is not useful for non-English forms.

Single Select

Add a series of options to this question type and the user can only pick one.

On the mobile phone it is presented as a list with a "radio" button
On the web form it is presented as a dropdown box

Multiple Select

Add a series of options to this question type and the user can pick as many as they want

Repeat

A repeat question contains a group of questions that can be repeated multiple times. Clicking Add Child will add a new question. In a web form, repeats are shown by default as rows of a table where new rows can be added
On the mobile client, the option New is available which takes the user into a new list of questions, this can be repeated as many times as necessary

Tip: it is possible to validate the "length" of a repeat question to see how many rows or sets of answers you have – see the sample form for an example.

Picture

Image question

On the mobile phone this accesses the phones camera funcitonality
On the web capture, this allows the upload of a picture

Video

Video question – video format must be 3gp

On the mobile phone this accesses the phones camera in movie mode
On the web capture, this allows upload of a file – it does not check on upload whether the file is the correct format or not.

Audio

Audio question – audio format must be 3gp

On the mobile phone this accesses the phones microphone
On the web capture, this allows upload of a file – it does not check on upload whether the file is the correct format or not.

Single Select Dynamic

Single Select Dynamic questions present a shortlist of a longer list of options, based on answers to previous questions. Single select dynamic questions require a Single Select Question to be present before they can be used.

A simple example is to narrow down a list of countries by first selecting a continent. The continent question would be a standard single select question. The country question would be a Single Select Dynamic question. You add all the countries of the world, but you map them to a continent. Once the user has selected a continent, only countries in that continent are displayed.

Single Select Dynamic questions appear like Single Select Questions

There is no limit to the nesting of Single Select Dynamic questions
e.g. to narrow down all the pupils in school in the entire world:
Continent -> Country -> District -> Village -> School -> Teacher -> Pupil

GPS

Get or enter the GPS co-ordinates (longitude, latitude, altitude) for a place

On the mobile phone, if GPS functionality is available it will launch the GPS to get the current location. If GPS functionality is not available it will present three windows to enter the data

On the web form, a single text box is presented which doesn’t validate that the input is a valid GPS co-ordinate.

Barcode

Not implemented in 1.16, but available in ~1.18 onwards

On the web form it just presents a free text box.

On the mobile client, if you have the -barcode midlet which includes a barcode reader, the barcode reader is launched which then uses mobile phone’s camera to take an image and process the barcode.