Formatted text is supported on Web Apps and and CommCare for Android (not on CommCare for Feature Phones). Formatting is done by using special markup symbols in labels in the form builder.

Our formatting is based on a text format standard called Markdown.

Formatting Text in the Form Builder

When editing a form's label or help text CommCare HQ will detect if you are formatting text in the text area. If you are, then a small preview will open to show what the form will look like on your phone.

If you do not want to include text formatting in your form you may click on "Turn Off Text Formatting". This will disable text formatting for this question and hide the preview. 

You may want to turn off text formatting if you want to write text that explicitly includes the symbols used in formatting. For example, if you want users to see *note* and not note then you should turn off formatting.

Supported Formatting Options


***bold italics***bold italics
This is an [example link]( is an example link.

# Header 1

## Header 2


###### Header 6 

Header 1

Header 2


Header 6

1. One

2. Two

3. Three

  1.  One
  2. Two
  3. Three

* Unordered

* Unordered

* Unordered

  • Unordered
  • Unordered
  • Unordered

| Column1 | Column2 |
| ----------- | ----------- |
| 100 | 200 |
| 110 | 215 |


| Column1 | Column2 |
| 100 | 200 |
| 110 | 215 |

Tables are only available in CommCare 2.50 and above.



Additional Notes


Clickable Phone Number

You can make a phone number in display text clickable using the following syntax: "[NUMBER](tel:NUMBER)" (i.e. "[+1-800-888-8888](tel:+1-800-888-8888)")

Other Considerations

  • Formatted label text will only work on CommCare mobile 2.20 or above. Older versions of CommCare will show the text with the markup
  • Old apps will, by default, not use rich formatting until you go in and manually update the label text
  • At the moment we do not support doubly nested lists
  • To turn off Text Formatting for the entire form:
    • Click "Tools" -> "Form Properties"
    • Click the checkbox for "Disable Text Formatting"
  • This feature is not available on hint texts

Case Details

It is also possible to use these text formatting options on the case detail screen. Doing so can add more visual queues for mobile workers when reviewing cases.

1 Comment

  1. Love all these options for formatting - seriously amazing! One quick thing - would it be possible to make hanging indents for bulleted lists (subsequent lines are indented as much as initial)? Would look so pretty! (smile)