Garmin is introducing several new gadgets at EAA AirVenture 2015 aimed at easing the pilot's life. The first is an automated logbook feature that synchronizes with Garmin Pilot on iOS devices and integrates with flyGarmin. The second is a series of audio panels that use Bluetooth technology for wireless music, phone, and Garmin Pilot alerts.
New electronic logbook capabilities in the Garmin Pilot application for iPad/iPhone automatically keep records of commonly recorded data regarding each flight with Garmin Pilot. The feature sorts date, flight duration, number of takeoffs and landings, route, and other data and saves this information so it can be referenced across Garmin Pilot devices and within flyGarmin.
Pilots can take advantage of built-in redundancy, which automatically syncs and stores manual logbook entries entered via either the flyGarmin website or Garmin Pilot app. The logbook also is able to record endorsements, track flight currency, generate historical flight reports, and more. Garmin Pilot also incorporates Nearest navigation so pilots can quickly find the nearest airport, navigational aid, airspace, or facility.
The Bluetooth-enabled audio panels, the GMA 350c, GMA 35c, and GMA 350Hc for fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, use Bluetooth technology for wireless access to music, phone, and Garmin Pilot alerts. Additional features include Telligence Voice Command technology and 3D Audio processing, as well as enhanced auto squelch capability. These features are aimed at decreasing heads-down time and increasing situational awareness.
“Garmin continues to focus on simplifying the flying experience with the GMA 350c all-digital Bluetooth audio panel, so pilots can focus more readily on the task at hand—flying the aircraft,” said Carl Wolf, Garmin vice president of aviation sales and marketing, in a media release. “With the GMA 350c, it’s easier to complete important tasks such as opening a flight plan on the ground before departing an uncontrolled field. This, coupled with Telligence Voice Command and 3D audio, combine to make this the most-capable audio panel on the market.”
Pilots can connect a smartphone or tablet to the GMA 350c to make phone calls or stream audio entertainment. The GMA 350c series also can work with the Garmin Pilot app to transmit terrain, obstacle, or traffic alerts while in flight.
Pilots can also connect wirelessly to Garmin's VIRB XE high-definition video camera in place of a headset audio cable to record intercom audio and air traffic control communications along with the video. VIRB XE features gyro-based stabilization and can receive advanced attitude metrics from select Garmin products such as Flight Stream, while providing up to two hours of HD video recording on a single charge. Built-in GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi and ANT+ combine to provide pilots with added functionality and enhanced connectivity with a variety of Garmin products.
A $500 VIRB XE Aviation Bundle provides pilots with all a stereo headset audio cable so pilot-to-pilot communications and air traffic control transmissions may be embedded within the video. A slide-on neutral density filter slows shutter speed to combat propeller distortion created by the "rolling shutter" phenomenon.
Telligence Voice Command allows pilots to use spoken commands to activate certain audio panel functions. For example, Garmin notes that pilots may switch from approach to tower frequency simply by stating, “Com one.” 3D Audio technology differentiates the audio sources and their locations to enable pilots to distinguish them more easily. For example, sound from Com 1 comes from the left, while sound from Com 2 seems to come from the right.
In another announcement, ForeFlight Mobile now connects to the Flight Stream 210/110, Garmin’s Bluetooth wireless gateway, and displays the full suite of ADS-B weather and traffic information received via the GDL 88/84.