Now using an app on your smartphone or tablet can help you become a better pilot. If you started flying before the iPad in 2010 you might remember aviation-specific portable-flight-bag tablets. They were big, heavy, and a general pain. With smartphones and tablets, and the apps that created for them, it quickly eliminated the heavy lifting and hours spent planning for cross-country flights. In this article, we’ll look at some new aviation apps that can help you become a better pilot and make flying and the process much more enjoyable.
Evaluating the accuracy of flights is not just for aviators training for a private, instrument, or commercial ticket. There’s always something new to learn every time you hit the skies. It’s a great use of time to assess how a flight went to gauge your proficiency and improve. CloudAhoy makes this process fun and effortless by letting you watch yourself fly and see where you made any mistakes. Did you keep your speed where it should be during the climb, cruise, descent, and approach? CloudAhoy can answer all of these questions and more.
Is frustrating when you hear pilots with poor communication skills on the frequency? Don’t be that pilot. LiveATC lets you listen in on the communications exchanges between air traffic controllers and pilots so you can better learn to mimic the most professional verbiage during each stage of flight. You can even select a specific airport from one of many lists categorized by country and state.
Not too long ago the only way to get aviation weather was to call 800-WX-BRIEF. Today, the number of resources to help determine the conditions for your flight route are abundant. One great app that breaks weather into components that are easy to understand is WatherSpork. The app offers a highly detailed Meteogram that shows weather information in a graphical format, with forecast periods ranging from 12 hours to three days.
4. FlyQ Insight
FlyQ Insight’s creator calls it “aviation’s first augmented-reality app.” The app shows the pilot where the airport is in relation to reference points outside. After calibrating the app, it will show airports that are in front of the viewfinder on the camera portion of the tablet and display them on the outside image. You can choose which airports it will show including private airports, heliports, seaplane bases, and airports with runways shorter than 2,500 feet.
Radar imagery is critical on bad weather days. MyRadar provides a clear and current radar image of the area immediately around your current location. Additionally, the app provides current, high and low temperatures, winds, the likelihood of precipitation; and cloud coverage. The paid version of the app allows you to superimpose weather imagery over VFR sectionals and low-and high-IFR charts.