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Top Aviation Apps for Pilots

With the passing of Apple founder Steve Jobs, who was instrumental in creating the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices, we take a look at some of the top applications designed specifically for non-commercial pilots. Many pilots are great fans of the iPad and use apps for navigation, checking weather, airspeed and other flight tools.

Keep in mind that the iPad is not FAA certified, quality and reliability varies, and apps should be used in conjunction with, not instead of, a GPS. That said, here are some highly rated apps you may want to consider adding to your electronic flight book (EFB).

  • Aero WeatherAeroWeather. This free app gives you current and accurate weather conditions (METAR), weather forecasts (TAF) for flight preparations, plus worldwide airport weather stations from a built-in database by either name or ICAO code. Data is shown in its original format or fully decoded into easy understandable texts.

  • FltPlan.com. When you access FltPlan on your iPhone using Safari, you can view Airport/FBO information on your PDA without being connected to the Internet. Create and file IFR flight plans, get weather briefings which meet 14 CFR 91.103 requirements, file IFR flight plans quickly, get access to radar summary and weather depiction charts, NEXRAD for an airport or a route, winds aloft, PIREPs and more.

  • FoureFlight Mobile HDForeFlight Mobile HD. Recently named the "Best App" in Aviation Consumer Magazine's Gear of the Year wrap-up, ForeFlight Mobile HD is lauded as a general, easy-to-use flight planner, chart manager and weather checker. Version 4 offers an all new navlog, plates organizer, integrated FAA "green book" A/FD, personal waypoints, airspaces and more.

  • Jeppesen Mobile TC. With the Jeppesen Mobile TC aviation iPad app and electronic charting subscription, you can access your instrument charts and airport diagrams directly on your iPad. View approach plate charts, terminal procedures and airport diagrams. The FAA recently cited Jeppesen Mobile TC as an example of a process established to authorize iPad as an EFB with an operator.

  • Garmin Pilot My-CastGarmin Pilot My-Cast. Designed specifically for general aviation, corporate and commercial pilots, Pilot My-Cast is a subscription service that lets pilots view comprehensive weather information for a route or airport. With Pilot My-Cast, see how the weather will impact your flight by overlaying numerous real-time data, including radar, visible and infrared clouds, AIRMETs, SIGMETs and lightning on a map with your flight displayed. Pilot My-Cast also features the AOPA Airport Directory along with the ability to file a flight plan and much more.

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