December 11, 2013
By Benét J. Wilson
As the year winds down, I thought now would be a great time to offer up another five apps recommended by AOPA members. The apps below do everything from help with flight planning to recording audio in the cockpit. These are not endorsements of any app.
iFlightPlanner (free in iTunes)—Evgeny Brusilovsky highly recommends this “free and easy” iPhone/iPad app that allows users to plan and explore flight routes with seamless IFR/VFR aviation charts and true route rubberbanding on a Google Maps interface; view en route aviation weather, including animated radar, color-coded, translated METARs and TAFs, temporary flight restrictions, and graphical airmets and sigmets; perform weight-and-balance calculations; and file and close FAA flight plans.
Who Owns that Plane ($9.99 in iTunes)—Wes Watkins says this is a great iPhone/iPad app “to see who is on the ramp” by typing in an aircraft N number. The information comes from the FAA database and is updated in real time.
Flight Winds (free in iTunes and Google Play)—This app, optimized for smartphones and recommended by Dan Reiland, calculates crosswind, tailwind, and headwind components for takeoff and landing, and displays them in a user-friendly way.
FlightLink (free in iTunes)—Luke Weintz recommends this in-flight cockpit voice recorder app which is optimized for the iPhone 5. “I love being able to record the audio from my flights and merge it with video from my POV camera,” he wrote.
Takeoff—Aviation Weather ($5.99 in iTunes and Google Play)—Bob Griffith says this app, optimized for smartphones, gives users a visual of all local reporting airports’ METARs. It also allows users to program in limits for wind, crosswind, ceiling, and visibility, and gives back either a green, yellow, or red icon for all of those conditions in all the nearby airports.
Speaking of great apps, it is not too late to help choose the top 10 apps for 2013. The current top five are ForeFlight, FlightAware, LiveATC, SocialFlight, and FltPlan. Help choose the best by voting for between one and 10 of your favorite apps here. Voting closes on Monday, Dec. 16. The winners will be announced on Wednesday, Dec. 18. Meanwhile, see the complete list of apps already reviewed here.
AOPA eNewsletter and Social Media Editor Benét J. Wilson joined AOPA in 2011. She is working on her private pilot certificate.
Takeoffs and Landings,
Changes to departure and arrival procedures in Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport airspace will take effect Sept. 18, and AOPA is cautioning pilots to plan ahead for the new procedures.
A VFR pilot enters instrument conditions shortly after takeoff. Air traffic control gets an instructor on the ground involved to help talk the pilot through the serious situation to narrowly avert tragedy.
California pilot Christopher Braun has created a revamped version of the cleco plier that is said to be lighter and more ergonomic.
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