Last week, the FAA approved the use of the Apple iPad within aircraft cockpits across America. So long as the device is used as a secondary, backup resource to long-reliable paper options, pilots may choose to reference the iPad for various flight needs. Apps such as ForeFlight’s Mobile 3HD and Hilton Software’s WingX allow pilots to check weather conditions, plan flights and view aviation charts, among a host of other resources.
By utilizing more intuitive pinch-zoom and swiping gestures, pilots can more carefully hone in on specific details they’d like to check. By reducing their entire flight bag to a 9.5″ x 7.5″ screen, pilots have the option of clearing up what can be a cluttered cockpit consisting of large maps, charts, and binders of reference materials which are used every flight.
Additionally, pilots can choose to load Google Earth or other satellite-based apps to view terrain at an unfamiliar airport. While 2D paper references are reliable and trustworthy, the iPad’s ability to provide simulated 3D views may be the next greatest advancement in private jet charter safety.