Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Learn to Fly: A Practical Guide

Today, it’s easier than ever to fulfill your dream of flying

iPad Essentials: Changing How We Fly

This article couldn't have been written even five years ago. The ingenious tablet device that Steve Jobs and Apple Corp. conceived as the "iPad" in 2010 (and that now seems to be everywhere) has changed how we function in the cockpit. Though the idea of using an iPad in the cockpit is only a few years old, it holds special significance for the student pilot. In fact, the iPad might be the most valuable student pilot tool out there.

Practicality, ease and safety are the main motives for using an iPad during flight training. It replaces pounds and pounds of paper, books, manuals, checklists and charts. Second, it provides a convenient way to access a wide variety of flight planning resources. It allows students to check weather from many sources, access graphical tools and use up-to-the-minute resources that can include the latest airport facilities and flight plans. Last, it provides unmatched navigation possibilities, a backup to paper charts and a way to review material both in the air and on the ground. The iPad can even be used as the main tool for ground school courses such as those from Sporty's and King Schools and ASA.

Having used an iPad for all facets of my instrument rating, I can attest to its usefulness in aviation. I found it an indispensable tool in the cockpit. Though there are any number of blogs, forums and websites dedicated to using iPads for aviation, the number of differing opinions makes choosing the right apps to load onto it difficult. With the student pilot in mind, here's a list of the most useful apps I've found for the iPad.


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