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Apple or Android tablet?

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Apple or Android tablet?

Old 6th Dec 2017, 13:19
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Iceland
Posts: 475
Apple or Android tablet?

Im in a dilemma trying to decide which path to take
For a cockpit use in a small helicopter (407) not EFB operation yet but hopefully soon. Would need to do planning, w&b, and post flight task with exel and google related programs and store some pdf copies of manuals

Which system/tablet would you rather use and why?
rotorrookie is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2017, 13:32
  #2 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Home
Posts: 788
No fruity hardware in my house!
GoodGrief is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2017, 13:54
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2008
Location: East of Africa
Age: 45
Posts: 929

Using a Huawei Mediapad M3, and it has almost replaced my Laptop as well.....

Using Airnavpro and Gironimo...

Any advice on e6b/w&b apps welcome..
hueyracer is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2017, 17:49
  #4 (permalink)  

Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: White Waltham, Prestwick & Calgary
Age: 69
Posts: 3,902
W & B apps can be obtained from gyronimo systems.

There is an app for the jeppesen CR-3 for Android.

have found that the apple version of a particular bit of software works better
paco is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2017, 18:51
  #5 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 309
I use a Samsung S2 8.0 with FlightPlan go, perfect size for a helicopter and it doesn't cost an arm and a leg to buy. It's actually more like a toy than anything else, not really needed since Companies have gps's in their aircrafts and it's plenty enough for me.

Note, No need to have the cell phone capability since GPS is included in the Samsung tablets, not in the Apple though.
fijdor is offline  
Old 6th Dec 2017, 22:47
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 773
Can't speak to flying in Iceland, but, FWIW...

In the US pretty much the top of the heap is either:

a) Foreflight or Garmin Pilot on iOS


b) Garmin Pilot on Android.

I have some religious objections to iOS--er--more seriously I use my tablet for a LOT more than flying and prefer the Android ecosystem to iOS, so I have chosen Garmin Pilot on Android. However, to be completely objective, Garmin develops for iOS first and iOS users get the best stuff first, period. If the only thing you are going to use your tablet for is flying (in the US), iOS is the way to go.

The primary discriminant between Foreflight and Garmin Pilot is whether you live in a Garmin-centric cockpit environment or not. If you have non-Garmin sources of ADS-B traffic and weather, you pretty much have to go with Foreflight, as Garmin only supports Garmin.

Since I control my cockpit environment, I selected a GTX345 to fulfill my ADS-B requirements. I will say that it is the cat's meow to have traffic and weather (TAFs and METARs, not radar--I'm VFR only ) on my tablet with Garmin Pilot.

aa777888 is online now  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 05:36
  #7 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 290
Don't let yourself be pulled in the "I hate ..... products" discussion. It really depends on what you want to do. I for example, as a professional developer, I really do like Linux servers (Android is a kind of Linux) but on the desktop side I prefer Mac with - if needed - Windows in a virtual machine or boot camp and many of my colleagues do the same. While a Linux desktop is a good machine, I just hate the looks of it.
Android is very mature, as is iOS. The price advantage of Android devices disappears with higher quality of the screen and the hardware. Some really good Android tablets are even more expensive, than the latest iPad. You need a high end tablet with all the graphics you will use.
A disadvantage of Android devices is, that many companies do not support them very long. After a year or so, they often get an update only rarely or not at all. Most devices out there are not on the latest Android version (something that drives Google nuts).
If you use it in a corporate environment, the admins will frown upon this. Apple supports its hardware much longer.

My experience is, that iPads are almost unbreakable. They just work.
The advantage of Android is more flexibility. On the other hand, some android tablet manufactures add their own software which is often just "crapware".

One of the often overseen aspects is, what are you comfortable with. If you have an Android phone, a high end Android tablet is a huge advantage, because you know better where to find stuff in a stressful environment.

Microsoft surface is also a possibility, if your software of choice does support it. I find Windows 10 a rather refreshing sight and many Mac users give it a try and are delighted - except for the crapware you have to uninstall after every update (or is that fixed?).

My experience is, that whenever I have to buy a new machine with the performance level that is need for my usage pattern, the prices do not differ a lot. Just don't by cheap. It really comes down to preference, environment and availability of software.
Rotorbee is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 06:44
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: EGDC
Posts: 8,605
Are we at risk of turning aviators into the type of person who walks into traffic because they are head-down, immersed in their phone/tablet and unaware of what is going on around them?

Just how many TAFs and METARs do you need for general VFR flying?

How about carrying and using a map?

Having ADS-B on your device is great but does it give you an audio warning or do you have to be looking in at the screen all the time?
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 07:06
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 893
Well, some point not mentioned yet
IPads tested for electromatic disturbance are allowed to be used in GA.
No iPad we use in the squadron ever failed.
You might think, its a minor point- but if Ann Android tablet makes trouble in the Air you might rethink...
Also, to the mentioned points about support/ development of Apps you get accessories like holder an so on for ipads, even from the manufactur of the bird - Not for Android tablets, which tells you also a story about what is prefered...
Flying Bull is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 07:57
  #10 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 290
Crab, good point, that is the same problem for pedestrians, drivers and pilots. Only, you can not turn the clock back. I like maps and I am still able to read them, but when you see how many people rely on satnav (and still get lost), we must realize, it's over.
Just life with it.
Rotorbee is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 08:05
  #11 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: EGDC
Posts: 8,605
Rotorbee, I don't have a problem with things like GPS or moving maps but unless pilots are trained to manage the cockpit environment with a proper cycle of activity, we will see constant heads-in causing problems - just like it does with satnav in cars with people as slaves to the magenta line without thinking or looking.
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 10:04
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 290
Crab, exactly. And with the highway in the sky they can't tell the difference between the XBox and cockpit. Just fly through the boxes. Won't get any points for the number of boxes, though.
I just think, that unless you mandate that the moving map goes black every 30 minutes for 3 minutes to watch the scenery outside, that is not going to change.
Well, in IMC safety is enhanced, in VFR, I am not so sure.
Rotorbee is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 11:21
  #13 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 773
Holy crap, at first I thought it was trolling, but you guys are serious.

I'm not the most experienced pilot, but I had my fixed wing private license before a tablet was even a gleam in anyone's eye. I've flown with paper maps and, while manageable in a fixed wing cockpit, in a helicopter cockpit they are a PITA.

I will carbon date myself a little bit, and agree with you Luddites to a certain extent, in that I find myself uncomfortable with the so called vector or Jepp VFR charts. I feel a bit lost without the detail of a Sectional. I chose software (Garmin Pilot) that displays Sectional charts.

But, more importantly, and more to the point, if a tablet is not improving your head up/out time, then you are not using it correctly. Forget convenience or gimmicks, they just make you faster at everything. Or should. Choosing and finding landmarks for navigational crosschecks (you don't trust the tablet, do you?) is much faster because you know precisely where you are and the map is always oriented properly. And, if you find there is a discrepancy, rectifying it is no worse than with a paper map. Reading is faster, no squinting at things, you can zoom things in. HSI type info is right there in the same place and taken in at glance. No folding or manipulation, your hands stay on the controls where they belong. The ADS-B info is put right on top of the chart, no need for a separate display or a separate place to look. With a little practice, I am now finding traffic well before I would normally, and the stuff that doesn't show up on ADS-B I find faster because I'm spending more time head up/out.

I'll throw another bone the Luddites way: it can make you lazy at organizing information for your flight ahead of time. Instead of making a cheat sheet with all the necessary runway, frequency, altitude, etc. info. you do tend to just punch the buttons on the tablet to get that in flight. That does create some easily avoidable head down time, however that's a fault of discipline, not the tool. I'll throw myself under that bus, by the way.

I suppose if you are hopelessly fascinated by shiny things you will be the sort to stare continuously at the tablet. But that's obviously the wrong way to use the tool, and a fault of the user, not the tool. It needs to have a proper place in the scan and not be the entire scan.

BTW, if you do get a shiny new tablet and put some shiny new aviation software on it, a couple of really great ways to get used to it is to play with it while being a passenger in a car or, even better, a airliner. I learned to use my tablet sitting way in the back of a lot of Southwest 737s

P.S. my phone backs up my tablet, and the up to date paper chart sits in the little chart/checklist slot, waiting to back that up, too.
aa777888 is online now  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 17:04
  #14 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Somewhere, Over the Rainbow
Posts: 194
Been using an Android EFB for the better part of 7 years now. Ended up with a Samsung Tab Pro and an awesome program called Naviator. Checklists and performance charts on PDF, W&B programs in Excel. No problems at all, and any time I came across a roadblock in software or hardware, the Android community out there always had a solution. Great setup, at least for flying in the US.

A lot of the guys and gals I fly with using Foreflight spend tons of time heads-down, there is just so much info in that program. They also are jealous of the quality of my lunch, as they spent most all of their lunch money on their iPads and the annual software fees.


TwinHueyMan is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 17:49
  #15 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 773
Originally Posted by TwinHueyMan View Post
A lot of the guys and gals I fly with using Foreflight spend tons of time heads-down, there is just so much info in that program.
Can't see how Naviator is any more or less distracting than Foreflight or Garmin Pilot. It's quite a capable program for the price.
aa777888 is online now  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 18:04
  #16 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: EGDC
Posts: 8,605
suppose if you are hopelessly fascinated by shiny things you will be the sort to stare continuously at the tablet. But that's obviously the wrong way to use the tool, and a fault of the user, not the tool. It needs to have a proper place in the scan and not be the entire scan.
exactly right and we come back to training to use the extensive information available in the cockpit.

It is there to enhance your aviation work cycle ( lookout, attitude. instruments) not replace it
crab@SAAvn.co.uk is offline  
Old 7th Dec 2017, 19:51
  #17 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Germany
Age: 50
Posts: 667
I‘m hapy with my iPad Air. For W&B and performance planning I use the Gyronimo Apps, for wx and Notams I just download the information from the official webpages.
Sky-Map is helping me to get from A to B and if needed you can add „real time“ overlays (radar, wind etc).
I think a tablet is a big contribution to safety. Instead of staring at the old fashioned paper chart for hours trying to figure out where the last known position of my finger was, a glance on the helicopter symbol on the tablet is sufficient to know exactly where I‘m at.
Consequently, more time to look outside.👍
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