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American Airlines approved to use iPads over paper charts

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Six months after receiving approval from the FAA to test of iPads as replacements for traditional paper flight charts, American Airlines is set to be the first major commercial carrier to use Apple's device in all phases of flight.

Citing an unnamed source, ZDNet reported on Tuesday that American Airlines (AA) will become the first major airline in the world to have FAA approval to use iPads as digital flight manual readers, and will begin replacing traditional paper charts on Friday.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration allowed AA to begin testing the so-called electronic flight bags in June, specifically approving the iPad to run an app that provides pilots with critical information during all phases of flight. It was the first time the FAA allowed an exception to its regulation prohibiting "class 1" electronic devices from being operated during takeoff and landing.

The Allied Pilots Association and AA collaborated with navigation and planning company Jeppesen to develop the iPad Electronic Flight Bag (EFB). The Boeing-owned company notes that its FliteDeck Pro Enroute application is the only FAA-approved digital replacement to paper counterparts, though AA has not stated whether it will use the program as its official EFB.

Pilots will use the iPad in place of existing 40-pound paper charts and manuals, enhancing efficiency and safety on the flight deck as well as saving an estimated $1.2 million in fuel costs.

Since testing began in June, AA pilots have flown thousands of hours with iPads in every stage of flight to evaluate the viability of the device as a flight tool. Previous reports indicated that flights between Los Angeles, Tokyo and Shanghai acted as the test routes for the experiment.

Screenshots of Jeppesen's FliteDeck Pro Enroute | Source: Jeppesen

Operations will begin on select routes using Boeing's 777 aircraft and plans call for iPad implementation across the entire AA fleet, though no time frame was given as to when the rollout will be completed.

Both the iPad and iPad 2 have been approved for use, and other airlines like United, Alaska and UPS are reviewing its potential. Delta has also indicated interest in replacing its traditional flight bags and started testing iPads in August.

Update: Apple-licensed aviation integration company Avionic and Systems Integration Group (ASIG) contacted AppleInsider on Wednesday to note that its partner, the Chicago-based carrier N-Jet, was the first commercial air carrier to achieve a paperless A061 FAA issued operational specification. That approval came in December of 2010.
post #2 of 34
"Pilots using AA-issued iPads will not be able to install Words With Friends."
post #3 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post

"Pilots using AA-issued iPads will not be able to install Words With Friends."

That is a good point. Is this a dedicated device? Has the FAA ban distracted flying?
post #4 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

...American Airlines (AA) will become the first airline in the world to have FAA approval to use iPads....

"FAA", "approval", and "world" are not words that go together well since the Federal Aviation Administration doesn't exist outside the U.S. Was it really necessary to exaggerate?
post #5 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualie View Post

"FAA", "approval", and "world" are not words that go together well since the Federal Aviation Administration doesn't exist outside the U.S. Was it really necessary to exaggerate?

I don't get your point. The statement you quoted was completely accurate. You do know that airlines based outside the US also have to fly into the US and need FAA approval for that, right?
post #6 of 34
Can the rest of us use our iPads throughout our flights on American Airlines too?

Oh that's right that imaginary threat of RF interference or something. Except apparently it's ok if they are in the cockpit?
post #7 of 34
Does that mean we can play Words with Friends without causing problems with the aircraft?
post #8 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

Can the rest of us use our iPads throughout our flights on American Airlines too?

Oh that's right that imaginary threat of RF interference or something. Except apparently it's ok if they are in the cockpit?

I too wonder if the Pilots will have to turn off their iPads the second the door closes until at least 15 minutes into the flight like the rest of us passengers. Those Pilot iPads are a lot closer to critical instruments than I am in coach. \
post #9 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ppartekim View Post

I too wonder if the Pilots will have to turn off their iPads the second the door closes until at least 15 minutes into the flight like the rest of us passengers. Those Pilot iPads are a lot closer to critical instruments than I am in coach. \

Mostly those precautions as just that, a precaution. Any commercial airplane will have all its instruments heavily shielded, but even with devices getting FCC approval you never really know what's out there.

Also, 250 people using iPads is a lot different than two people using iPads.

I think what the FAA and FCC want to do is introduce devices very gradually, and in a very controlled way.

This wikipedia article may be helpful: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_phones_on_aircraft
And this article regarding Alec Baldwin: http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/Threat+portable+electronics+planes+hazy+rules+clea r/5846459/story.html
post #10 of 34
Wow. It's too bad that iPads are just toys and overgrown iPod Touches. No one would ever have any serious use for them.
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Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #11 of 34
The reason you can't use your iPad during take off and landing isn't because of some radio interference. It's the same reason I can't lean my seat back an extra 1.75 inches or your tray needs to be up. They would like a little focus while they're getting something the size of a large house,that's packed to the gills with people and luggage, to actually fly. Take off and landing are dangerous but short and should something go wrong 200 iPads flying through the cabin would suck. If an emergency escape from the craft is needed more people will have a chance at getting out alive if nobodies seat is leaned back and none of the trays are down.
post #12 of 34
It has been rumored that Android tablets are also currently undergoing testing, but unfortunately things haven't been going too smoothly so far.

One pilot on a test flight was using an Android tablet to chart their course, but apparently the map was functioning so choppy and laggy on the tablet, that the flight, which was scheduled to land in New York, actually ended up landing in Boston instead.

And in other airline related news, Air Zimbabwe has placed an order for 50 Kindle Fires to use as navigation systems on their airline.
post #13 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ppartekim View Post

I too wonder if the Pilots will have to turn off their iPads the second the door closes until at least 15 minutes into the flight like the rest of us passengers. Those Pilot iPads are a lot closer to critical instruments than I am in coach. \

The third paragraph of the article clearly answers your question.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration allowed AA to begin testing the so-called electronic flight bags in June, specifically approving the iPad to run an app that provides pilots with critical information during all phases of flight. It was the first time the FAA allowed an exception to its regulation prohibiting "class 1" electronic devices from being operated during takeoff and landing.
post #14 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by addicted44 View Post

I don't get your point. The statement you quoted was completely accurate. You do know that airlines based outside the US also have to fly into the US and need FAA approval for that, right?


Only SOME airlines outside the U.S. "have to fly into the US." It's simply ridiculous to suggest otherwise. The original statement is completely inaccurate and a silly, needless exaggeration. The U.S. is obviously very important, but it's not the center of the universe. The FAA doesn't control what happens in every airline in every country. Try telling that to some in Europe, or Russia or China and you'll be laughed out of the room as a buffoon. Besides, if what you suggest is true, that the FAA dictates rules for the world's airlines, then it's even more of an exaggeration to include the word "world" because it would be ipso facto and therefor unnecessary to even point out, except to needlessly exaggerate.
post #15 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualie View Post

Only SOME airlines outside the U.S. "have to fly into the US." It's simply ridiculous to suggest otherwise. The original statement is completely inaccurate and a silly, needless exaggeration. The U.S. is obviously very important, but it's not the center of the universe. The FAA doesn't control what happens in every airline in every country. Try telling that to some in Europe, or Russia or China and you'll be laughed out of the room as a buffoon. Besides, if what you suggest is true, that the FAA dictates rules for the world's airlines, then it's even more of an exaggeration to include the word "world" because it would be ipso facto and therefor unnecessary to even point out, except to needlessly exaggerate.

You're only digging yourself deeper.

First of all, it is not AppleInsider which wrote that line which you are apparently whining about. And the statement is not an exaggeration at all, it is completely accurate.
post #16 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by muppetry View Post

The third paragraph of the article clearly answers your question.

You're forgetting something....he would've had to read the article before he posted a comment to know that.
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post #17 of 34
Now they can set the plane on autopilot and play Angry Birds HD. That's a fun job.

Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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post #18 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor David View Post

The reason you can't use your iPad during take off and landing isn't because of some radio interference. It's the same reason I can't lean my seat back an extra 1.75 inches or your tray needs to be up. They would like a little focus while they're getting something the size of a large house,that's packed to the gills with people and luggage, to actually fly. Take off and landing are dangerous but short and should something go wrong 200 iPads flying through the cabin would suck. If an emergency escape from the craft is needed more people will have a chance at getting out alive if nobodies seat is leaned back and none of the trays are down.

Nice!
post #19 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor David View Post

The reason you can't use your iPad during take off and landing isn't because of some radio interference. It's the same reason I can't lean my seat back an extra 1.75 inches or your tray needs to be up. They would like a little focus while they're getting something the size of a large house,that's packed to the gills with people and luggage, to actually fly. Take off and landing are dangerous but short and should something go wrong 200 iPads flying through the cabin would suck. If an emergency escape from the craft is needed more people will have a chance at getting out alive if nobodies seat is leaned back and none of the trays are down.

This is a web forum...

Logic and reason have no place here!
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post #20 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post

This is a web forum...

Logic and reason have no place here!

I can help with that: how do they know that the pilots are AA members?
post #21 of 34
Somewhere, Alec Baldwin is fuming. Not that he's any less of an idiot for not following instructions, but still.
post #22 of 34
Quote:
The Allied Pilots Association and AA collaborated with navigation and planning company Jeppesen to develop the iPad Electronic Flight Bag (EFB). The Boeing-owned company notes that its FliteDeck Pro Enroute application is the only FAA-approved digital replacement to paper counterparts, though AA has not stated whether it will use the program as its official EFB.

If "FliteDeck Pro Enroute application is the only FAA-approved digital replacement" and AA will begin replacing traditional paper charts on Friday then wouldn't they have to use FliteDeck Pro Enroute?
Or are they going to use unapproved software?
post #23 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor David View Post

Take off and landing are dangerous but short and should something go wrong 200 iPads flying through the cabin would suck.

Yet we're all allowed to read books, even large hardcovers, during takeoff and landing. So if your claim were correct those would be disallowed too. Sorry, but the original article specifically mentions the FAA and "class 1" devices. It's definitely the threat of EMI that has been prohibiting iPads et al. And with that threat now not only scientifically disproven but admitted to be non-existent by the FAA, the prohibition should go away forthwith. (It almost certainly won't, but it should.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor David View Post

If an emergency escape from the craft is needed more people will have a chance at getting out alive if nobodies seat is leaned back and none of the trays are down.

Which has squat to do with whether iPads should be allowed during takeoff and landing. You can certainly force trays and seats to be up while also allowing iPads, no?
post #24 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualie View Post

Only SOME airlines outside the U.S. "have to fly into the US." It's simply ridiculous to suggest otherwise. The original statement is completely inaccurate and a silly, needless exaggeration. The U.S. is obviously very important, but it's not the center of the universe. The FAA doesn't control what happens in every airline in every country. Try telling that to some in Europe, or Russia or China and you'll be laughed out of the room as a buffoon. Besides, if what you suggest is true, that the FAA dictates rules for the world's airlines, then it's even more of an exaggeration to include the word "world" because it would be ipso facto and therefor unnecessary to even point out, except to needlessly exaggerate.

Okay, let's look at the counter-argument. What if the article had said "American Airlines is the first airline in the USA to have been approved by the FAA to use an iPad...".

That would mean that it is possible that British Airways, which is not a US based airline could have already got approval from the FAA.

The statement was absolutely accurate. Its okay to make mistakes (I don't even want to count how many stupid comments I have made on AppleInsider itself) but doubling down on it just makes you look silly.
post #25 of 34
Muah ha ha ha not long before Siri/Skynet is plugged into having information on all flights all around the world, accelerating it's move towards self-awareness.
post #26 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor David View Post

Take off and landing are dangerous but short and should something go wrong 200 iPads flying through the cabin would suck.

As opposed to 200 hardbacks, paperbacks, in-flight magazines, SkyMall, and newspapers?
post #27 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualie View Post

Only SOME airlines outside the U.S. "have to fly into the US." It's simply ridiculous to suggest otherwise. The original statement is completely inaccurate and a silly, needless exaggeration. The U.S. is obviously very important, but it's not the center of the universe. The FAA doesn't control what happens in every airline in every country. Try telling that to some in Europe, or Russia or China and you'll be laughed out of the room as a buffoon. Besides, if what you suggest is true, that the FAA dictates rules for the world's airlines, then it's even more of an exaggeration to include the word "world" because it would be ipso facto and therefor unnecessary to even point out, except to needlessly exaggerate.

Does this change anything for any other airlines, which don't fly into the USA and therefore didn't need FAA approval in the first place?

No? Then you're right, the article is irrelevant to those airlines.

However, using a strict interpretation of the definitions of the words involved, answer this question: Did any other airline, anywhere in the world, have FAA approval to allow their pilots to use iPads during all phases of a commercial flight?

No? Then the article was, indeed, accurate. No matter how irrelevant it may be to some, the fact remains that it is still accurate.
post #28 of 34
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by cggr View Post

Does it matter any more??

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...7AS0T220111130

Hardly an elephant in the room.

Every major U.S. airline has filed for bankruptcy in the past 5 years. American simply held out longest. There is close to zero chance that AA will stop flying any time soon. In fact, if the experience of their competitors provides any clue, AA will emerge from bankruptcy stronger rather than weaker.
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post #30 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

In fact, if the experience of their competitors provides any clue, AA will emerge from bankruptcy stronger rather than weaker.

Sure. Going into bankruptcy in order to break the promises made to your employees, unions, and in order to avoid paying your bills is practically an "American" institution by now.
post #31 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktappe View Post

Yet we're all allowed to read books, even large hardcovers, during takeoff and landing. So if your claim were correct those would be disallowed too. Sorry, but the original article specifically mentions the FAA and "class 1" devices. It's definitely the threat of EMI that has been prohibiting iPads et al. And with that threat now not only scientifically disproven but admitted to be non-existent by the FAA, the prohibition should go away forthwith. (It almost certainly won't, but it should.)



Which has squat to do with whether iPads should be allowed during takeoff and landing. You can certainly force trays and seats to be up while also allowing iPads, no?

Setting aside the fact that I'd much rather have even War and Peace bounce off the cabin ceiling and hit me on the head than glass and aluminum...

You missed my over all point, and edited it out. It's not about fairness ie: they have a book why can't I have my ebook. It's just one more thing to worry about for the crew. I think I downplayed the concern about interference coming from electronic devices in my original post, I'm sure that's a part of it. But there has been no effort that I've heard of from the FAA to look into that (for passenger use)and I bet that will continue. My guess is the FAA is happy to claim there might be a technical problem with allowing their use so they don't get bogged down with what's fair. I think fair is very low on their list of concerns.

After I posted I followed a previous posters link to an article that quoted someone from the FAA that used the same word I did "focus". Yes, a book or magazine can distract people also, and that's not fair.

You say that since pilots got approval for their use the ban on everyone else using them should be removed forthwith. For all electronic devices? Just the approved ones? Are we going to have the crew verify that everyone's device is compliant? Or just trust all the passengers ? So there are some issues still to consider before forthwith comes into play and as I said earlier fairness is likely not high on the list.
post #32 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahmlco View Post

As opposed to 200 hardbacks, paperbacks, in-flight magazines, SkyMall, and newspapers?

Yes. Paper flying through the cabin worries me far less than glass and aluminum.
post #33 of 34
You have 1 device tested in one particular place and approved. It is impossible to test every possible electronic device in every possible seat in the aircraft. There are wires running all over the aircraft. What do you think makes more sense, having electronic devices all off for a short time, or risking interference at a critical time?
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post #34 of 34
Never mind! Rock on!
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