Alaska Airlines Push for iPads As in-Cockpit Flight Aids

Apple’s iPad won approval from US regulators to display navigational charts for some charter pilots, a step that may speed the end of the decades-old tradition of paper maps in the cockpit.

Last month, the Federal Aviation Administration put its stamp of approval on Apple’s iPad for in-cockpit use by pilots with the charter airline service Executive Jet Management. It is a significant step, offering pilots the option of using the tablet’s touchscreen interface for pre- and in-flight course charting, a task that has relied upon paper maps since the dawn of air travel.

The Executive Jet Management approval now opens the door for larger commercial airlines to pursue putting the iPad into cockpits, an FAA spokesman told Bloomberg. Such a shift in the air carrier industry would fall in line with Apple’s larger plans for the device, positioning it as a tool for business as well as consumers.

For now, most of the proud owners are using the iPad as a personal device but with developments like these, Apple will eventually be able to hit the commercial buyers which may help Apple raise the sales by 50 percent.

There are advantages of using iPads over traditional charts like they can provide better luminosity but at the end of the day paper never malfunctions or runs out of battery.

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