If you’re looking for the best app out there to make the most of your flying, we have compiled a list of what we think are the top seven apps out there for pilots. Although most of them are subscription based, many offer trial periods or “lite” versions of the applications so that you can try them out before purchasing. Nonetheless, most are well worth the investment and contribute tremendously to your flying experiences.
ForeFlight is probably one of the most popular apps out there. The application offers full VFR and IFR sectionals, interactive flight planning tools as well as up to date IFR approach and procedure plates. On top of this there are tons of small features such as an electronic logbook, flight tracking and debriefing, weight and balance calculators, synthetic vision while in flight etc. They offer both a standard and “pro” subscription. The standard subscription is currently $99/year while the pro subscription runs at $199/year.
ForeFlight is great for both VFR and IFR rated pilots. The software makes flight planning a breeze, and users have the option to save aircraft date for future flight planning needs. The app also allows users to log onto DUATS to file flight plans as well as obtain weather briefings right on the application. You can find out more using the link below or search for the product on the App store. ForeFlight is currently only available on Apple products.
For those Android users out there, or someone looking for an alternative to ForeFlight, Garmin Pilot offers many of the same features as ForeFlight. Many pilots try both out as essentially they perform the same functions, however it is up to each individual to decide which software works best for them. Garmin Pilot has a different user interface in terms of using the application, and many pilots who are familiar with their products including their G650 and G1000 units, will find this to be an extremely user friendly application to use. Sectionals, Approach plates, flight planning tools, synthetic vision, Garmin Pilot offers all you need for a richer flying experience.
The standard subscription price for Garmin pilot is currently priced at $74.99/year. You can find out more using the link below.
For pilots looking for an electronic logbook, Logten Pro offers a great product. Besides from the standard electronic logbook feature used to log and track flights, Logten pro offers a whole lot more. Pilots are able to easily check total times, route histories and even verify they have met requirements for a certificate using the application. All flights are arranged and sorted in easy to use tables and graphs so that reading and extracting data off the software is simple and efficient. For professional pilots, the application offers easy transfer of logbook data over onto your airline applications as well as pre fills form 8710 for you! The application is FREE for student pilots up to 250 hours and then will be $79/year going forward. There are various subscription bases, read more about them all at the link below.
Live ATC is great for pilots or fellow plane spotters alike. The application allows pilots to listen to live ATC feeds throughout the U.S and select international airports. The app is useful for student pilots especially or any pilot not used to operating in a controlled airport environment, pilots can listen in on frequencies to get more familiar with ATC terms or calls. There is also a web based application you can listen to using a PC browser, however an application for a one-time fee of $4.99 is available on the app store.
Dubbed “The Facebook of Aviation” by Wall Street Journal, Flightradar24 Flight Tracker instantly puts huge amounts of data at pilots’ fingertips. Using this app, pilots can view the current position of aircraft in real-time anywhere in the world, as well as the associated flight information. Pilots can even point their mobile device at a plane on the tarmac to find out what type of aircraft it is and where it’s going, or bring up live arrival/departure boards and weather conditions for airports across the world.
This App is great for both pilots and Flight Instructors. Cloud Ahoy offers full flight tracking including route and inflight data history logging. This means flight instructors can easily look back at a flight or lesson done with a student, and view data such as airspeeds, altitude, flight path, ground track etc. The data is all put into comprehensive tables making it easy to read and understand, approaches to landing are even put into comparison with glide slopes, making it easier to identify where students are making errors in flight.
For general aviation pilots simply flying, the app is a great tool for you to ensure you are staying on track and being safe in the operation of your aircraft. Once you are done with you flight, log onto the app and get a quick debrief of how you did, no CFI needed! The App has a 35-day trial period, after the trial has expired the annual membership is $65/year.
The internet has made it easy to track airplanes in flight, both airline and general aviation, and there are plenty of good tracking apps available. FlightAware is one of the most popular, with a good mix of features and convenience. Want to see if your friend has landed? Want to see how big your weather diversion was? This free app makes it easy to do that and more. If you sign up for an account, you can even track your own airplane (if it’s ADS-B Out equipped) when it’s flying VFR. Best of all, the App is FREE on the app store and is available on Android platforms too.