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Alaska Airlines Instruction Manuals Replaced W/ iPads

Alaska Airlines is the first domestic airline to replace pilots’ heavy bags of printed flight reference materials with electronic copies via the iPad device. Alaska Airlines has just finished Winter and Spring trials of the iPad replacement program 100 of its instructor pilots. The airline ipads will contain a specialized application called GoodReader that is loaded with PDF versions of 41 flight, systems and performance manuals, reference cards, and other materials.

The electronic manuals have hyperlinks and color graphics allowing pilots to find information faster and easier. Pilots will easily be able to search for specific terms or model numbers and readily find what they are looking for, thus making everyone safer in emergencies. Although the cost of the iPad-switch hasn’t been made clear, the airline did want to mention that the initiative will save 2.4 million pieces of paper.

The question now becomes, will other airlines soon follow? These days, most American airlines nickel and dime you for every little thing, from peanuts to seat placement, they charge, charge, charge. Do you think these penny-pinching airlines will really switch to iPads for their instruction manuals or will this be more of a ‘select-few’ type of thing? Interesting questions indeed.

Photo Courtesy of dave
Photo Courtesy of jeffreyB