Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, June 24, 2014

ForeFlight Update


Aviation’s premier electronic flight bag gets even better


With its new 6.0 release, ForeFlight continues to make a great product even better. Since its launch in 2008, ForeFlight has changed the way we manage our flights, and has introduced a whole new way to plan and execute them. "Revolutionary" is certainly a word that applies to ForeFlight, and this new release adds enhanced capabilities to the mobile app, and even more exciting, sets the stage for future enhancements.

First, "refinement" was the guiding concept for the development of release 6.0. Throughout the app, visual enhancements abound, making the user's interface with the app more elegant. ForeFlight was never a clunky app, but this new release is filled with subtle color changes, better icons, clearer navigation and overall design features that make it more pleasing to the eye. Though the basic functionality wasn't changed, the "user experience" was enhanced throughout.

In addition to tweaking the GUI (graph­ical user interface), Release 6.0 brings scads of enhancements, including a new profile view for terrain clearance, significant additions to flight plan filing capabilities, enhancements to Stratus, new ForeFlight Airport Diagrams and more. The new update does require iOS 7.1 or higher.

One of the most useful improvements is the introduction of computer-generated airport diagrams. Exclusive to ForeFlight, these diagrams provide moving-map layouts for airports that wouldn't otherwise have maps available. ForeFlight has built their own airport database, since the FAA only provides diagrams for a limited number of airports and nearly doubled their airport diagram coverage. The georeferenced maps provide annotations for tracing taxi routes, runway proximity advisor alerts, automatic display of the diagram upon landing and the ability to overlay the diagram on the moving map. The new diagrams are delivered as part of the normal update process for current subscribers on version 6.0 and up, and appear in the procedure/plate selection list for that airport.

Though it's only available in the ForeFlight Pro version, the new Profile View is impressive. It not only gives you a side view of terrain and obstacles along your planned route, but also adds dynamic color alerting, so you'll know whether your selected altitude will keep you clear of terrain and obstacles. To enhance your flight planning, the Profile View displays three values along the profile box that you can interact with:

• Highest—The highest terrain or obstacle along your route
• Clearance—Your vertical clearance over the highest terrain/obstacle along the proposed route
• First Strike—Distance (in nautical miles) from your origin or current position where your first impact with terrain/obstacle based on your current planned altitude



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