Future Proofing your InfoPath Investment
At Qdabra, we are all about electronic forms. When Microsoft announced that they were discontinuing InfoPath in January of 2014, we made it our mission to look at other technologies that may be good alternates for our customers. We created a “migration matrix” and published our findings on a new Web site, which we named FormsQuo: http://formsquo.com/solution-matrix/. We also presented an “After InfoPath: …” webinar series which we recorded and uploaded to YouTube: http://www.qdabra.com/en/education/resource.aspx. Scroll down to 2014 to find links to the webinars prefixed with After InfoPath.
In the end, we concluded that InfoPath was still the best forms technology on the market today. I blogged this last year: http://formsquo.com/16099/evaluating-alternatives-to-infopath-six-criteria/
In January of 2015, Microsoft announced that they were cancelling the Forms On SharePoint List (FOSL) technology that they had announced with great fanfare in March of 2014 at the SharePoint conference. They said they were going to ship InfoPath Forms Services again in SharePoint 2016, and push back the end-of-support date to 2025. Now, given the rate of technological change in today’s society, when I look forward to the year 2025, I’m not so sure Microsoft will even exist in its present form, not to mention SharePoint. But, we will likely still have HTML, XML, JSON, and the other standards which are instrumental in formatting the Web that we experience today. So, we will still have XML forms.
Qdabra has spent tens of thousands of dollars developing an alternative XML forms technology called FormsViewer. This is meant to provide a backup option (insurance) to organizations worried about InfoPath going away. FormsViewer is open source and free. It’s an app that you install in SharePoint 2013 or Office 365 that parses InfoPath templates and allows you to view, edit, and submit existing InfoPath forms (but without InfoPath technology). We are very close to releasing version 1.1 of this tool. For more information, you can go here: http://formsquo.com/16099/evaluating-alternatives-to-infopath-six-criteria/ . Version 1.1 will include Web service data connections, and a limited number of qRules extension commands (mapping to SharePoint lists, insert/delete, generate GUID etc.)
Please let me know how we can serve you. While we still believe in InfoPath and are committed to the future of electronic forms, we are also technology-agnostic and have professionals certified in Microsoft Access, K2 Smart Forms, Nintex, Ardevia, PDF ShareForms, etc. We’re here to help you complete your business automation mission, regardless of which path you choose to take.