Avidyne will couple its satellite datalink receivers with electronic flightbag displays made by Advanced Data Research Florida to provide graphical weather and text messaging worldwide. The data is distributed through the Avidyne Network Operations Center using the 66-satellite Iridium constellation.
The Avidyne MLX770 datalink receiver sells for $9,990 and includes the antenna plus two years of free weather data service. Weather service starts with the Basic level for $50 per month including 10 hours of flying. Graphical radar is offered at the premium level of service for $115 per month that includes 10 hours of flying. Text messages include service to SMS-capable mobile telephones and e-mail. The MLX770 can be upgraded to the MLX780 when it is available later in 2009 for those wanting to add telephone service.
The MLX780 will be available in the fourth quarter of 2009. Upgrades from the MLX770 will cost $2,000. Those purchasing the MLX770 now may have the wiring for the MLX780 installed at the same time. Worldwide Iridium telephone calls on the MLX780 will cost between $1 and $1.50 per hour.