Sporty’s, the company that has made its name for more than 50 years with an ever-increasing number of ever more technologically advanced training products, has spent the last year-plus overhauling its most popular courses by updating the video to 4K, so it’s even better quality than many of us can even display right now (the operative words being “right now”). There are 32 new video segments, including all of the step-by-step guides to flying the required maneuvers for the flight test. In fact, Sporty’s overhauled much of the content to make it even fresher, more graphically appealing and engaging.
I recently went through a couple of the company’s new offerings—its ForeFlight training guide and its Instrument Pilot course—and came away impressed by the work. I’ve been an instrument pilot for a while now, but I still appreciated the refresher, and I’ll admit that there were more than few points I was fuzzy about before the review.
Likewise with the ForeFlight course. I use this app on a regular basis, but after going through Sporty’s how-to course, I learned about a few nooks and crannies I’d been unaware of before, and I learned how to do familiar things faster and easier. Again, both courses seem like great avenues for pilots new to the subject and for those, like me, in need of a refresher.
But Sporty’s overhaul wasn’t a course-by-course effort. It dug into the bone of the products and did something that will make every customer happier and make the learning that much more effective and efficient. Here’s how.
If you’re like me, and most pilots clearly are, you have more than one gadget that you use to go online or to make a voice call or to watch video content or to send instant messages or to check the weather or…you get the idea. And depending on where you are or what else you’re doing, one of those gadgets might be more convenient than the next. With most products, that means figuring where you left off on the last device, navigating to that section and then starting over again. And that leaves off the complications of your progress, not to mention your quiz scores.
Sporty’s has your back, though. The new courses sync it all together, so you can do your studying with an iPad or iPhone, or even the latest-gen Apple TV (which I do not yet have but plan to get soon), and it automatically syncs across whatever devices you’re working on, so when you pick up the iPhone instead of the iPad, it knows right where you are and where you’ve been.
The new app—available in the Apple App Store—has all the same features on your iPhone or your iPad, and it allows you to download videos for offline use. I downloaded a few just to check it out, but I’d prefer to stream them when I’m in wifi coverage to avoid filling up the storage on my iPhone (which is already loaded with airplane photos and videos to begin with).
To get started, go to the Apple App Store and download Sporty’s Pilot Training (the download is free). From there you can get the Instrument Rating Course ($199), the Learn to Fly Course ($199) and the Flying with ForeFlight course ($29).
Learn more at Sporty's Pilot Shop.