Tablet PCs fly high

1time Airline says it will become the first airline in Africa and only the third airline in the world after Alaska Airlines and American Airlines, to introduce Apple’s iPad2 tablet PC into the pilots’ flight deck as an all-in-one Electronic Flight Bag (EFB).

Through this paperless application, 1time’s pilots will have electronic fingertip access to a variety of vital resources normally included in a pilot’s carry-on flight bag. This includes exchange/mail capacity, rostering, the latest weather updates, passenger information and loads, system and performance manuals, as well as  electronic weight and balance.

1time’s Chief Executive Officer, Rodney James, notes that the use of the iPad2 as an EFB will ensure that the airline’s pilots’ duties are simplified and more efficient.

“The EFB application for the iPad2 is truly unique, and will help our flight crews perform flight management tasks more easily, swiftly, and efficiently. It also results in the creation of a paper-less environment.”  

An EFB is an electronic information management device which supports hundreds of general aviation applications that simplify pre-flight planning and assist with in-flight operations. EFB devices can display a variety of aviation data or perform basic calculations, such as performance data, and fuel calculations.

The iPad2 has all the necessary technological features to do the job, and it is light and slim, making it easier to use than a laptop under the circumstances.

The iPad2 has also has been cleared by the American Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) as a device that doesn’t interfere with airplane electronics. The device has ten-hour rated battery life, resulting in pilots being able to use the device on long flights without needing to connect it to a power socket in the flight deck.

1time is working closely with aviation expert Jeppesen, the South African Civil Aviation Authority, and Apple, in order to ensure that the iPad2 is an efficient, effective and convenient all-in-one package.

Jeppesen is also set to provide airlines with tailored coverage, which will extend the iPad2 applications to include Enroute and Text, and thus provide a full route manual suite.

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