or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPad › FAA plans to expand use of Apple's iPad & create its own app store
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

FAA plans to expand use of Apple's iPad & create its own app store

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has found that use of the iPad has improved efficiency and lowered costs, prompting the authority to expand use of Apple's touchscreen tablet, and even create its own application storefront with aviation-specific software.

About 1,100 FAA employees are currently using iPads, but that will "broadly expand" in the near future, according to AVweb (via TUAW). That's because the FAA has found that tablets are "particularly useful" for employees like mechanics and lawyers at the administration.

"The FAA currently allows employees to use iPads to read and send e-mail or documents, and does not allow the devices to be used to access FAA networks. But that is scheduled to change," the report said.

"The FAA's manager of Architecture and Applied Technology said that by 2014, the FAA plans to allow workers the choice to replace laptops with iPads."

Because the FAA's employees have found the iPad to be an invaluable tool in daily work, the administration hopes to build more specific applications to suit their needs. In addition to creating its own application store, the FAA also reportedly hopes to expand use of the iPad to trainers and students.

Last July, the FAA approved use of the iPad as an electronic flight bag for pilots. The change allows airlines to replace cumbersome 40-pound paper manuals with just Apple's touchscreen tablet.




And in December, American Airlines became the first major commercial carrier to use Apple's iPad in all phases of flight. The iPad has been used on American Airlines flights in replace of traditional paper charts.

While the FAA has approved use of the iPad among pilots and plans to expand use among its own employees, the administration is also considering relaxing rules that prohibit use of the device among passengers. Last month, the administration said it was taking a "fresh look" at the use of portable electronics on airplanes, which could potentially lead to the iPad being approved for use during takeoff and landing.

[ View article on AppleInsider ]
post #2 of 23
This is exactly what all the nay-sayers were denying from the start. Remember all the 'it's just a toy' or 'it's just a big iPod Touch' arguments when the iPad came out?

The iPad is truly a game-changer. Possible close to the same level as the introduction of the personal computer.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #3 of 23
If they allow the iPad to be used during takeoff and landing, then it sounds like they are not a threat to operate amongst the passengers? If not, then maybe it is the cellular connection that poses a threat. I am sure there are going to be a lot of angry passengers from using their iPads if they can't use them too.

But I guess it poses a threat in case of turbulence as the device might get thrown around during take off and landing since they aren't secured in a safe place.
post #4 of 23
Well, until you play around with one, it is hard to describe the positives. While it has more time to develop, it is still great to use, it just needs a decent sized screen. I think anything less than the current size is too small for me. I would personally like a bigger model, but it would be heavier due to having a larger battery.
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

If they allow the iPad to be used during takeoff and landing, then it sounds like they are not a threat to operate amongst the passengers? If not, then maybe it is the cellular connection that poses a threat. I am sure there are going to be a lot of angry passengers from using their iPads if they can't use them too.

But I guess it poses a threat in case of turbulence as the device might get thrown around during take off and landing since they aren't secured in a safe place.

A large part of the problem is the distraction issue. In the event of an emergency, passengers must drop what they're doing and pay 100% of their attention to the flight attendants. Electronic devices interfere with that.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #6 of 23
iPads are "particularly useful"? That's strange. I always thought the iHaters claimed that iPads were "useless toys". I thought that only Windows tablets could be used for anything "useful" when it comes to business. It appears the F.A.A. thinks otherwise. I sure hope more companies think this way and iPad sales growth continues for years.
post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

A large part of the problem is the distraction issue. In the event of an emergency, passengers must drop what they're doing and pay 100% of their attention to the flight attendants. Electronic devices interfere with that.

I find that very hard to believe -- much more inclined to believe the possible RF interference with nav and comm equipment since it is electronic and all electronic devices have some RF signature. Perhaps there will be a new rating available e.g. 'approved for use in commercial aircraft unless otherwise noted or instructed by flight crew' or some such verbiage.

If it were the distraction issue wouldn't they have to have everyone put away all newspapers, magazines and books as well as any toy or gadget (electronic or otherwise).
post #8 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

I find that very hard to believe -- much more inclined to believe the possible RF interference with nav and comm equipment since it is electronic and all electronic devices have some RF signature. Perhaps there will be a new rating available e.g. 'approved for use in commercial aircraft unless otherwise noted or instructed by flight crew' or some such verbiage.

If it were the distraction issue wouldn't they have to have everyone put away all newspapers, magazines and books as well as any toy or gadget (electronic or otherwise).

There is ABSOLUTELY no evidence that these devices interfere with nav or comm equipment. The rationale was that since the FAA didn't know, they didn't want to take a chance. Yep, sounds scientific and engineering practice.
post #9 of 23
It is too bad the pdf maps and approach plates the FAA provides take longer to download than it takes to fly the route. The files are massive- we are talking gigabytes to download the maps required for a transcontinental flight. Legally, this data must be downloaded monthly to keep current with the latest changes.

The FAA uses outdated GIS software that converts simple text strings into massive quantities of short line vectors that take up megabytes of storage and render slowly on most browsers. The majority of text on these maps uses the Futura and Helvetica fonts which are built into every iPad. Why convert each character into line vectors when you can simply call out the built in Futura font? If the FAA could figure it out, the data they provide could be 1/10 the size of the files they provide today.

The FAA is in the process of raising fees for accessing these files. Perhaps they could use some of this money to improve the quality of the files. Smaller files would download faster, take up less room in the memory of the iPad, draw more quickly on the iPad and use less battery power to display. Faster downloads would reduce the IT requirements for the FAA and would allow pilots to spend their time flying rather than waiting to download this month's updates.
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

If they allow the iPad to be used during takeoff and landing, then it sounds like they are not a threat to operate amongst the passengers? If not, then maybe it is the cellular connection that poses a threat. I am sure there are going to be a lot of angry passengers from using their iPads if they can't use them too.

There have been real cases where emissions from passenger devices has caused issues with plane electronics. You can't make a simple statement implying that if the pilots can do it we should be able to do it also. It is a very complex issue. You have to remember that electronics are distributed throughout a plane, a device with zero impact in one seat might totally scramble navigation equipment in another.

As a recent Navy plane crash has shown if something goes wrong with your take off or landing you have but minutes, seconds really to recover if at all possible. So I have to question the mental capacity of anyone that can't wait 20 minutes to whip out his I device. In fact it is probably a better use of a do not fly list than current uses for that list.
Quote:

But I guess it poses a threat in case of turbulence as the device might get thrown around during take off and landing since they aren't secured in a safe place.

That is a big issue and is why passengers are asked to store all of their stuff during landings and take offs. If something goes wrong you want to minimize the number of missiles in the air.
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

iPads are "particularly useful"? That's strange. I always thought the iHaters claimed that iPads were "useless toys". I thought that only Windows tablets could be used for anything "useful" when it comes to business. It appears the F.A.A. thinks otherwise. I sure hope more companies think this way and iPad sales growth continues for years.

My jump from an iPad one to an iPad 3 has been very enlightening. The much faster GPU is perhaps the most important feature of the device behind the new screen. The new machine is far more useful.

It is interesting that they indicated that the iPad is very useful for mechanics. I find that the new hardware goes a long way to being able to improve the ability to view drawings that I work with in automation. This is very much a consumptive mode thing too, I really don't want to look at make an engineering drawing on an iPad, at least not yet, but being able to read them when out in the field is a huge benefit, especially if I can replace 10" of engineering drawings with one iPad. It is really good here that Apple concentrated on GPU performance to make iPads usable in this regard.

The interesting thing here is that yes many companies are looking at the iPad in a positive manner. Including companies that have neve looked beyond Windows hardware, so your hopes and dreams are becoming real.
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbtinc View Post

There is ABSOLUTELY no evidence that these devices interfere with nav or comm equipment. The rationale was that since the FAA didn't know, they didn't want to take a chance. Yep, sounds scientific and engineering practice.

There have been a number of cases where equipment issues on a plane where corrected after pilots asked passenger to turn off their electronics. This isn't a case of someone imagination going wild. The problem for the FAA is that it has to consider the needs of the entire fleet of passenger planes. Even amongst planes of the same model you will have different generations of flight equipment as these planes are built for years or even decades. The only way the FAA could be certain about cabin electronics is to test each and every plane with every iteration of electronics it has on board.

You also have to realize that some of the push to keep the electronics turned off comes from the ground up so to speak. Pilots really don't want yet another thing to worry about during landings and take off. Even if the FAA started to lean in this direction there is no assurance that pilots would except the move.
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

There have been real cases where emissions from passenger devices has caused issues with plane electronics.

No. There hasn't. Not in an airline setting in any case.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

... might totally scramble navigation equipment in another.

No. That's not how it works.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

As a recent Navy plane crash has shown if something goes wrong with your take off or landing you have but minutes, seconds really to recover if at all possible.

That crash (and any other like it) had nothing to do with electronic interference. An electronic failure (or interference like you suggest) would NOT create a situation even vaguely like that of the F-18 crash to which you refer.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

That is a big issue and is why passengers are asked to store all of their stuff during landings and take offs. If something goes wrong you want to minimize the number of missiles in the air.

Again... just because it SOUNDS reasonable doesn't mean that's the reason. (Those devices don't have to be stowed... just turned off... you can still hold them in your lap to become potential "missiles" )
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #14 of 23
This is why the Utrabook will fail as well
Quote:
"The FAA's manager of Architecture and Applied Technology said that by 2014, the FAA plans to allow workers the choice to replace laptops with iPads."

People are beginning to choose a ipad over getting a laptop or replacing a desktop computer. I believe we will continue to see a decline in the PC market place as more and more people more to a tablet over a standard computer. The rest of the industry if failing to realize that Steve created the better mouse trap and people are moving away from that they were use to.

it is really pathetic when our government realizes it before the rest of the industry. Governments always lag behind.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebmooney View Post

It is too bad the pdf maps and approach plates the FAA provides take longer to download than it takes to fly the route. The files are massive- we are talking gigabytes to download the maps required for a transcontinental flight. Legally, this data must be downloaded monthly to keep current with the latest changes.

So? It can be done overnight while the device is charging. Just not that big a deal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

There have been a number of cases where equipment issues on a plane where corrected after pilots asked passenger to turn off their electronics. This isn't a case of someone imagination going wild.

Then feel free to cite some examples.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

There have been a number of cases where equipment issues on a plane where corrected after pilots asked passenger to turn off their electronics. This isn't a case of someone imagination going wild.

Source please. I've been unable to locate such evidence... even with access to industry sites and databases.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Pilots really don't want yet another thing to worry about during landings and take off. Even if the FAA started to lean in this direction there is no assurance that pilots would except the move.

You are so full of crap on that one. I can absolutely guarantee that pilots don't think about that AT ALL during ANY phase of flight (but certainly not during take-off and landing.) We KNOW that the devices are on all the time anyhow, regardless of what passengers are told to do, and frankly, nobody really cares.
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #17 of 23
The thing that strikes me is how many different industries appear to be standardizing on the iPad. This uptake is happening much more quickly than previous new platforms. I get the impression that Apple has demonstrated how well suited a tablet is for a multitude of applications, while at the same time being the only one offering the stability, support, road map and ecosystem to be worth bothering with. They invent the market, they define the market, they set the bar for the market.

Amazon can pad the "Android" tablet numbers all they want, but the real action, ironically, is where people want to do "real work." Apple is building PC like domination for tablets in the workplace, so this time around it's like they're getting to play the role of both Microsoft and themselves-- consumer and office at once.

I don't know if we've reached that critical mass point or not-- if there's still time for Android to get its tablet act together, or for Win8 to iron out its bugs and get some traction. But I can't imagine that they have more than a year to demonstrate a reason to choose them over Apple, before it's pretty much a done deal.
They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
Reply
They spoke of the sayings and doings of their commander, the grand duke, and told stories of his kindness and irascibility.
Reply
post #18 of 23
Am I not looking hard enough? How come there seem to be no headlines about Android being deployed in the corporate enterprise? In United States, at least.
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbtinc View Post

There is ABSOLUTELY no evidence that these devices interfere with nav or comm equipment. The rationale was that since the FAA didn't know, they didn't want to take a chance. Yep, sounds scientific and engineering practice.

There's tons of evidence. I used to work for an interconnect company's specializing in aviation. We used filters to deal with interference and the technology is not iron clad. The old fleets are full of this stuff and it's not foolproof.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eye Forget View Post

There's tons of evidence...

Then provide some. Sources. (and, no, anecdotal evidence from a friend of an acquaintance is not a valid source )
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

A large part of the problem is the distraction issue. In the event of an emergency, passengers must drop what they're doing and pay 100% of their attention to the flight attendants. Electronic devices interfere with that.

Seriously, how frequent are emergencies during commercial flights? Guessing 1 in a 10,000,000? (There are roughly 10,000,000 flights annually in the U.S. Every several years one crashes. And maybe for every one that crashes, a couple others have a true emergency).

And during those outrageously rare emergencies, what is the chance that passengers having iPads in use is going to drastically affect the outcome? I think the sensation of the plane in free fall would get most to stop the Angry Birds. And most people in a true emergency cannot function, stewardess instructions or not.
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by uguysrnuts View Post

Am I not looking hard enough? How come there seem to be no headlines about Android being deployed in the corporate enterprise? In United States, at least.

I think they had a pilot program to deploy the Kindle Fire instead, since it was supposed to take over the tablet market. But then they decided they should wait instead for the Windows tablets to save the day.
post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by commoncents View Post

... I think the sensation of the plane in free fall would get most to stop the Angry Birds...

HaHaHa ... spoken like someone with no understanding of the situation at all.
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: iPad
  • FAA plans to expand use of Apple's iPad & create its own app store
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPad › FAA plans to expand use of Apple's iPad & create its own app store