US Air Force may buy 18,000 Apple iPads for cargo aircraft

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014


The U.S. Air Force's Air Mobility Command recently put out a notice that it plans to buy as many as 18,000 of Apple's iPad for use on cargo aircraft like the C-5 Galaxy and C-17 Globemaster.



The Air Mobility Command's planned purchase could prove to be the largest single federal order for iPad 2 units, according to Nextgov. The site spotted the AMC's plans in a Federal Business Opportunities posting, where it revealed it plans to buy a "minimum of 63 and a maximum of 18,000 iPad 2" units or "equal devices."



Though the iPad was the only tablet named specifically in the listing, Lt. Col. Glen Roberts, AMC public affairs director, said the command seeks "a tablet device" but "not necessarily an iPad."



The Air Force seeks proposals from tablet makers and seeks to obtain them at the lowest possible fixed price. A move to tablets, iPad or otherwise, would allow the AMC to adopt an electronic flight publication system to save time and money, as well as boost efficiency.



iPads have been taking to the skies ever since the Federal Aviation Admisitration signed off on the use of Apple's touchscreen tablet as an electronic flight bag last July. Previously, commercial and charter airlines relied on cumbersome 40-pound paper manuals.



That prompted major airlines, like American Airlines, to use the iPad as digital flight manual readers, replacing traditional paper charts. The move is expected to save the airline $1.2 million per year in fuel costs alone.



[ View article on AppleInsider ]

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 28
    Quote:

    "minimum of 63 and a maximum of 18,000 iPad 2"



    Is this where I make a joke along the lines of, "Ah, good old government number-crunching!"



    That's a non-partisan joke, isn't it? Neither side will be offended because everyone does that, right?
  • Reply 2 of 28
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    where it revealed it plans to buy a "minimum of 63 and a maximum of 18,000 iPad 2" units or "equal devices."



    Equal devices? There are none.



    If it had said inferior devices, we'd know that they were maybe considering Android tablets, but luckily, that is not the case.
  • Reply 3 of 28
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    Clearly no one told the brass that 'it's just a big iPhone'
  • Reply 4 of 28
    ko024ko024 Posts: 68member
    I am glad I invested in this company soon after the iPAD was released even though it was at a very "high price" of 300. You have no idea how many people told me it was too high, they cant go up, the iPAD is no good, blah blah blah.....



    One of the best decisions I have ever made....
  • Reply 5 of 28
    icoco3icoco3 Posts: 1,474member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post


    Equal devices? There are none.



    If it had said inferior devices, we'd know that they were maybe considering Android tablets, but luckily, that is not the case.



    They still have to put it out to bid just to be fair per gov procurement policy. Maybe when a new iPad comes out, the iPad 2 will be reduced to $299 for a 2nd tier model and save some tax payer $$$$.



    Tom
  • Reply 6 of 28
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,752member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ko024 View Post


    I am glad I invested in this company soon after the iPAD was released even though it was at a very "high price" of 300. You have no idea how many people told me it was too high, they cant go up, the iPAD is no good, blah blah blah.....



    One of the best decisions I have ever made....



    Well done! You know, $500 won't even be high when we look back in a few years.
  • Reply 7 of 28
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,557member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ko024 View Post


    I am glad I invested in this company soon after the iPAD was released even though it was at a very "high price" of 300. You have no idea how many people told me it was too high, they cant go up, the iPAD is no good, blah blah blah.....



    One of the best decisions I have ever made....



    Sad thing is the same people are still saying the same things. They really are obsessed with Apple's demise.
  • Reply 8 of 28
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Meanwhile in Australia a pilot is suing an Airline for NOT providing an iPad.



    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/new...-1226264136062



    A $500 purchase would have avoided a million dollar law suit.



    Price is in the eye of the beholder.
  • Reply 9 of 28
    Quote:

    The Air Force seeks proposals from tablet makers and seeks to obtain them at the lowest possible fixed price.



    What this means is they will waste a ton of money on shitty Coby tablets, realize their mistake, then spend their money on iPads like they should have in the first place.



    I'm surprised they're not obligated to purchase an American-made tablet like: http://www.duratabusa.com/
  • Reply 10 of 28
    jfanningjfanning Posts: 3,398member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hill60 View Post


    Meanwhile in Australia a pilot is suing an Airline for NOT providing an iPad.



    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/new...-1226264136062



    A $500 purchase would have avoided a million dollar law suit.



    Price is in the eye of the beholder.



    So he is sueing his employer, for not providing a device that wasn't available for sale?



    Date of injury, Dec 2009, iPad available in the US, April 2010, available in Aussie, May 28, 2010. I really hope that lawsuit works out for him....
  • Reply 11 of 28
    YEARS ago I bought it at $19 and change. WHY WHY WHY did I let me ex talk me into selling???





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ko024 View Post


    I am glad I invested in this company soon after the iPAD was released even though it was at a very "high price" of 300. You have no idea how many people told me it was too high, they cant go up, the iPAD is no good, blah blah blah.....



    One of the best decisions I have ever made....



  • Reply 12 of 28
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rothgarr View Post


    I'm surprised they're not obligated to purchase an American-made tablet like: http://www.duratabusa.com/



    I wonder where they get their components, before assembling these things in America?
  • Reply 13 of 28
    wigginwiggin Posts: 2,265member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post


    Equal devices? There are none.



    If it had said inferior devices, we'd know that they were maybe considering Android tablets, but luckily, that is not the case.



    I know you are being sarcastic, funny, whatever, but if you think about, if by "equal devices" they mean equal to the task at hand, you could easily argue that the iPad is overqualified.



    It's likely the device doesn't need most of the capabilities of an iPad. It won't need to be able to surf the web, make Skype calls, play games, or purchase songs from the iTunes Store. iCloud would be completely irrelevant. And the iPad's closed nature could be a big negative for this application.



    The iPad may still be the best device for the job, but if "equal" is viewed in terms of the requirements for the proposal, it may well not be the only device, nor the cheapest, which gets the job done.
  • Reply 14 of 28
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post


    I know you are being sarcastic, funny, whatever, but if you think about, if by "equal devices" they mean equal to the task at hand, you could easily argue that the iPad is overqualified.



    It's likely the device doesn't need most of the capabilities of an iPad. It won't need to be able to surf the web, make Skype calls, play games, or purchase songs from the iTunes Store. iCloud would be completely irrelevant. And the iPad's closed nature could be a big negative for this application.



    The iPad may still be the best device for the job, but if "equal" is viewed in terms of the requirements for the proposal, it may well not be the only device, nor the cheapest, which gets the job done.



    You're missing the point. The application involves flight information. Currently, the iPad is the only device with FAA approval.
  • Reply 15 of 28
    wigginwiggin Posts: 2,265member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    You're missing the point. The application involves flight information. Currently, the iPad is the only device with FAA approval.



    Except that really wasn't the point of the post I was replying to. That post's point was to slam non-iPad devices.



    Besides, there are a lot of things the Air Force flies with that aren't FAA approved.
  • Reply 16 of 28
    Apple gained nearly one Facebook ($100B) in value since Steve Jobs died







    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2012/02/...0-billion-run/
  • Reply 17 of 28
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ko024 View Post


    I am glad I invested in this company soon after the iPAD was released even though it was at a very "high price" of 300. You have no idea how many people told me it was too high, they cant go up, the iPAD is no good, blah blah blah.....



    One of the best decisions I have ever made....



    and I'm still sad I had to sell my 30 shares at $17 (before they split twice) so the (now ex) would get any.
  • Reply 18 of 28
    Wow. 18,000 sounds like a lot, considering that the Air Force only has about 400 "cargo" aircraft.



    http://www.planespotters.net/Airline...ates-Air-Force



    Maybe the pilots are unionized
  • Reply 19 of 28
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by adsapp View Post


    Wow. 18,000 sounds like a lot, considering that the Air Force only has about 400 "cargo" aircraft.



    http://www.planespotters.net/Airline...ates-Air-Force



    Maybe the pilots are unionized



    Maybe each plane has 45 staff?



    (no wonder they need to save weight by going digital)
  • Reply 20 of 28
    boeyc15boeyc15 Posts: 986member
    Don't be surprised if they go Android for tablets(perhaps even Microsoft win8), they did go android for phones. Paradoxically or maybe not, the same company that builds the c-17 has made a corporate decision to NOT deploy the iPhone at all and go with Android phones. But they will continue to 'explore' enterprise deployment of the iPad. Go figure. I think it is due to the defense dept decision to go with Android phones. They are waiting for the final defense dept decision on tablets. Bottom line IMO- defense dept doesnt like the closed Apple operating system. Microsoft is great at tweaking operating systems to enterprise needs. And Android can be tweaked to their needs. Apple... Take it or leave it. Generally great for Auntie Em user, but not corporate.
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