FAA Approves iPads in American Airlines Cockpit



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.

  • Srose428

    The phrase “Crushing demand” is going to have to be reworded.  Seems like a no brainier for the entire industry to switch to the electronic flight bag system, fuel savings are just the beginning.

  • Steve

    Now what is alec baldwin going to yell and kick doors about on a flight

  • mikemcl

    How many pilots are going to thrown off planes for using their iPad during landing and takeoff?

  • Joey Hornick

    Should they be buying iPads if they are in Bankruptcy proceedings?

  • MacRat

    I guess you think the existing printed documents are free and free to replace?

  • John Branham

    I can’t imagine it’s saving that much money from the WEIGHT difference…? do you mean like the price of the paper??? but that’s not fuel obviously…..

  • RyanTV

    “For a 1.5 iPad.” Do you ever actually read anything that you write back to yourself?

    For someone who claims to be a “veteran technology journalist”, you have a poor sense of editing.

  • Mojo66

    “Today’s FAA approval finishes a reported six-month trial period for the airline.”
    So it took 6 months to confirm that ‘Airplane Mode’ actually does what is says?

  • Aj Tk427

    actually it’s the difference in weight of charts, which are huge.

  • Shanny Becerra

    I can hear it now…

    *Epic Angrybirds Battle going on in the background*

    “Aaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh folks this is your captain speaking. It looks
    like we’ve hit some unexpected turbulence *waaaaaahoooo…crash..crunch..oink* and I’m going to turn on that seatbelt sign “DIIIIIING.” Flight attenands please return to your
    seats. As soon as it smoothes out, we’ll continue our service.”

  • DCRealist

    heh. it’s a dumb rule that is routinely flaunted with no ill effects (cue all the “just you wait, you selfish prig comments). *sigh* but the chance of seeing the ban on electronics lifted even as the pilots FOR EVERYONE’S SAFETY use the bloody things? zero.

  • bobSquared

    So how do they even get the app?  Do they have to put it in the app store?  Does that mean we or delta can buy it?