American Airlines’ pilots will soon be able to exchange 35 pounds of charts and manuals for a 1.5 iPad. The airline becomes the world’s first to use the Apple tablet in the cockpit and throughout the flight, saving an estimated $1.2 million in fuel annually.
A Friday flight by an American Airlines B-777 will be the maiden voyage for the iPad, according to Seattle PI. The iPad will be used to display navigation charts and cockpit digital flight information. Although a number of airlines have been approved to use the iPad in some areas, American Airlines will be the first to employ the tablet throughout a flight.
In June, the Allied Pilots Association announced American Airlines held the first tests of iPads in flight. After receiving initial FAA approval, the airline reportedly asked government regulators to approve using the iPad in all phases of a flight. Today’s FAA approval finishes a reported six-month trial period for the airline.