CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again


US pilots get approval to play with iPads during flight

It's not just us playing with our iPads when we should be working -- US pilots have been given the go ahead to use the tablets in mid-air.

Many's the time we've been told off for playing on our iPad when we should be working -- but we're not controlling hundreds of tonnes of metal. Pilots in the US, however, are now officially allowed to use them while flying their planes.

The US Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has approved the gadget for use by American Airlines pilots while a mile high from Friday, our sister site ZDNet reports. And other airlines are looking into introducing them to their cockpits too, so soon European flights could be equipped with Apple kit.

Apple's tablet will replace bulky flight bags, saving fuel and meaning pilots have less weight to carry, as well as less paper to be strewn around the cockpit and possibly cause injury. Though we suspect they just said all this as an excuse to play Angry Birds. They'll also be able to download important updates immediately, rather than waiting for paper versions. And play Flick Kick Soccer.

The original iPad is also approved for use mid-flight. The other airlines looking into doing the same include UPS, Alaska and United -- all American, but if it catches on we could see Virgin Atlantic and British Airways taking up the baton.

BA's air stewards already use iPads for seating plans and tracking passengers, and they may eventually dole them out to first-class passengers as part of the inflight entertainment. Though we're guessing you'd have to give them back them after.

American Airlines has been trialling iPads in the cockpits for six months prior to the FAA granting permission. The reduced weight of iPads over flight bags should also save money in fuel over the course of a year.

Would you want your pilot equipped with an iPad? Or do you think they might spend all their time playing Tiny Wings and get some ideas? Let us know below or on our Facebook page.

Image credit: 9to5 Mac