About a month ago, the FAA finally approved the use of electronic devices such as the iPad in the cockpit, to allow pilots to carry electronic charts, instead of having to carry pounds of charts and maps for every single flight. For instance, Jeppesen, a company that produces paper and electronic charts used by pilots for pre-flight planning and in-flight navigation, recently announced that private jet charters were finally allowed to use the Jeppesen Mobile TC iPad app, an ‘electronic flight bag’ apps, after completing a three-month in-flight evaluation. But the use of the iPad in the cockpit will soon not be limited to private planes only. According to Bloomberg, Delta Air Lines, one of the largest airlines in the world, as well as Alaska Airlines, are about to bring iPads to their planes’ cockpits, and plan to run pilot tests to check the usability of the device on large commercial airliners.
Given the success of the iPad – and other tablets – within the private airlines community, the FAA will likely grant commercial airlines the right to use the iPad as an aviation tool in some areas later this year. Meanwhile, iPad owners can already download the free Jeppesen Mobile TC app to see what electronic charts actually look like. [Pictures courtesy of Jeppesen]