VEX Public Scouting App for Android

Hey there, everyone. I mentioned a week or so ago that we were creating an app to assist teams with scouting. The large number of teams at competitions as large as Worlds can be overwhelming for teams to track of. If you have multiple people out in the stands or pits looking around, information can get confused or muddled, and it can also be difficult to always communicate back to the drive team exactly who their opponents are.

That’s where our idea came in. Why not create a centralized location that a team could use to keep track of all their competitors? The scouts could input data into a database that would then be accessible by other members of their team. You wouldn’t need to keep lists on paper, you wouldn’t need to frantically call the scouts and hope they would answer their phones, and you could take everything back to the hotel rooms to analyze that night.

Here’s what we came up with

This app is fully compatible with all Android OS devices, as well as the BlueStacks emulator for Windows and Macintosh computers. You should have no problem putting it on any of these devices.

When you start the app for the first time, you will be presented with a login/sign-in screen. Each team chooses a personal login, which assigns them their own “database.” Every other member of your team would then sign in with that same username and password, thus giving you a private scouting list. No other team will be able to see your scouting information unless you give them the username and password to access your account.

The main screen is where the functionality of the app takes place. Both of the options open a separate feature, which are fairly self-explanatory. I’ll just break them down here.

Scout: Allows you to input information about a team. Type in their number and letter (127C, for example) on the screen above and you will be directed to the next page. 127C and 127c will direct you to the same entry, and if information for a team is already present, a message will appear informing you of this. You will be asked if you want to put new information in, or simply view their team info. Note that choosing to input new information will cause the previous entry to be erased.

This section has several areas available for entry. We put in sections for the information we were interested in when we were scouting teams at local competitions. You can list which side they have Autonomous modes available for, what their Autonomous mode does, and what they do at the beginning, middle and end of a match. Each of these areas simply allows you to type in whatever you want, so use whatever terminology your team has developed. Additionally, you can link up to five pictures to the database entry if you take the pictures after clicking the button “Picture” at the bottom of the page. However, these will not be shared across devices. Do not add more than five pictures to a single entry, or the app will crash. We’re working on it, but decided that we would do an initial release a couple weeks before Worlds.

Here, there are two options. I’ll break them down for you.

Search: Allows you to search for a specific team. Again, just type in 127C in the box at the top of the last image, and it will pull up the entry your team has made. If you do a search for a team with no entry, an error message will appear. If information does exist, though, it will appear on a page like this.

You can scroll through the entry, and the picture will be at the bottom if you personally added one.

List: Allows you to view all database entries in the form of a list. Clicking on a team will open their specific information. The list is organized by the time the entry was made, with the most recent entry on the bottom, and the first entry on the top.

That’s basically everything. We’ve tested this across three phones, two Android emulators and a Nexus tablet, and everything seems to be working. If you have any comments/concerns, please feel free to leave them here, or e-mail us at


Google Play Store:

BlueStacks (Android Emulator):

Direct link to the .apk:

im assuming that it stores the data in it self locally and sends information to a new device. and one thing that worlds doesnt allow wifi. im not sure about 3G and such but im assuming that isnt legal either.

Data is fine, since it is on a completely different frequency and very unlikely to cause interference in the matches.

About the app,

My first impressions of it were slightly weak, since the UI was bland and the initial registration required a wait after pressing the “Sign Up” button, yet there was no progress dialog to signal that the app was working. I recommend improving the interface a little and making it more attractive to use.

Afterwards, I started to begin using it. Since there aren’t very many teams to scout yet, it was hard to judge how stable and how well the app worked. Some things I noticed:

  • No multiline support on the entries. That should be useful
  • Cannot append to existing entries
  • Words are cut off when viewing entries on my phone (Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket)

If you can get some of these issues resolved, I will probably use this at worlds.


Do you think it could be possible for you guys to combine the function of both your apps into one? So you can view your matchlist, find all the teams you are playing with, highlight matches you are interested in watching. View rankings trsp and combine this input functionality with more fields than this? And how about the ability to share this scouting info with other teams in addition to the stuff you already collected?

Worlds allows the use of cellular data plans. If the judges or referees ask you to turn it off, obviously you should comply, but there shouldn’t be a conflict.

The Tournament Viewer App was someone else, actually. I have a vague idea of how this app works, but I have no idea how the other one does. I can bring it up to the guy who made this, but I don’t expect the two to be linked any time soon.

Android, everything you listed from the bland UI to the multi-line entry not displaying correctly is on on the list of things to fix. We thought that putting out an initial release before Worlds might be useful to people who were doing scrimmages still, and would provide people with a chance to do some more testing before it’s actually needed. After all, even 5-10 users trying it out will find more than the 6 of us on one account. Thanks for keeping track of the bugs, and keep posting anything you find.

As for sharing the information with other teams, just have them log onto your account. They’ll have access to everything you’ve done, and can make annotations, too.