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JohnAJohnson View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JohnAJohnson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: iPad Questions
    Posted: 21 Jul 2020 at 10:40am
I've read as much as I could find but still have questions.  It's been years since I've owned an iPad (Air) and I sold it within a year of purchase.  Didn't like the restrictions, itunes, exorbitant cost, and a hundred other reasons.  But I am a new IFD540 owner and if I want to use the Avidyne training app and the IFD100 app, I have no choice.

It'll be a Mini 5, mounted on the leftmost side of the panel with RAM Mount equipment.  Android tablets have always worked well here, with the A Pillar serving as a hand-rest for this left hander.  There will be an inch or so of glare shield over the iPad to keep it out of direct sunlight, and the high wing will block the aft sun.
Q.  Do I need a screen protector/anti-glare?

For the IFD540 and IFD100, I plan to use the first free Jepp offer to get every chart, plate, etc., for the Americas, and then update with only the USA thereafter.  I'll also want a scratch pad app  for clearance, and WingX, populated with USA VFR and IFR data.  Music, W&B, and other apps will be on my trusty Android cell phone.
Q.  Will 64gb be enough?

I'd like to have it powered/charging while it is in the plane.
Q.  Will any of the 2.4 - 3.1 amp cigarette lighter type chargers work (I know about EMI related to cheap chargers in aircraft)?
Q.  Is there a fire danger to keeping it on the charger constantly?
Q.  Does a constant charge increase the chances of a thermal shut down?


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oskrypuch View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 6:29am
I am also Apple-free, other than the iThingie I relented to buy, so I could run FF & the IFD100.

I don't use the tablet a lot, and when I do, it is sitting in my lap on the left side of my lapdesk.

I did not bother with a screen protector.

Buy a good amount of memory, say midrange if not maximum. Don't get the minimum.

As this will be a dedicated in-cockpit unit (I presume), just get the wi-fi unit without the cellular circuitry, a good $ savings. You lose the GPS (odd design), but that doesn't matter as you will have GPS on wifi in the plane from the IFD. You still get a coarse location sense on the ground from wifi.

I have had good success with the Anker plug in units for all my plug in devices, they upgrade them every couple of years. Minimum of 2.4A. Never had noise from these.

I would doubt a fire hazard, any more than any other Li-ion powered device.

Unlike most android tablets, the iThingies are very prone to overheat, things that seem to make this worse:

1) running on external power, as this runs them faster/brighter -- good but "bad"
2) having them in the sun (which you will have)
3) having them on continually

I have seen mine overheat, even though I don't do #2 and #3.

If you are going to have it on continually, on power, in the sun, you might want to look at a cooling solution. Kind of bulky, and a pain that you need something like that for such an expensive tablet.

* Orest



Edited by oskrypuch - 23 Jul 2020 at 11:54am
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HenryM View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 9:12am

Q.  Do I need a screen protector/anti-glare?

The anti-glare is a matter of personal preference. The newer iPads are much better than the old ones in that respect. I'd mount the iPad where I want it and check. Like everything else, you get what you pay for. If you do want an anti-glare screen, go for a name brand. There is a difference between the ultra cheap ones and the more expensive ones.

Q.  Will 64gb be enough?

WingX takes about 9.32GB with the whole US loaded. Avidyne takes about 449 kB with both apps. If you don't use anything else, 64GB should be enough. FYI, Foreflight with lots of additional manuals and data, and the whole US loaded takes 27.18 GB. FlyQ EFB takes 32GB for the basic app plus the whole US. My iPad has almost completely replaced my laptop and I use it more outside the plane than for flying. I prefer to get the largest memory that I can. I usually downloaded several movies when flying internationally.

Q.  Will any of the 2.4 - 3.1 amp cigarette lighter type chargers work (I know about EMI related to cheap chargers in aircraft)?

That should do it. I'd try to find a 3.1A. I am not sure about the iPad 5, but the higher capacity one will keep all devices charged even with the screen turned up to max. A 2.4A charger might result in a slowly decreasing charge level with some of the iPads.

Q.  Is there a fire danger to keeping it on the charger constantly?

I've never experienced any issues. I usually plug in my iPad Pro for the duration of the flight. 

Q.  Does a constant charge increase the chances of a thermal shut down?

Possibly. The iPad sometimes warms up just a little when charging. It shouldn't once it is fully charged. I am careful to keep mine out of direct sun. It hasn't overheated in a long time. It certainly will if I put it on the glareshield or in the direct Texas sun.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ibraham Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 9:41am
If you would like a back up navigator, I would recommend getting the wifi + cellular iPad as it will have a WAAS GPS receiver. 
If you don't want to pay for Foreflight, You can get the FLTPLAN GO app that has moving map and all the FAA approach plates and charts for free. It will provide a good backup with geo-referenced charts in case you lose airplane electric power.  It is a very small price to pay, usually about $100 more for the cellular version.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 10:16am
I prefer to get the GPS version too. No need to activate a data plan, if you don't want to. It provides a good backup should you have electrical issues or problems with your primary navigator. The price difference is not much compared to buying an external GPS, and you save carrying yet another device if you ever use the iPad outside the plane.

It is also relatively inexpensive to add the iPad to your phone's cellular plan (at least on AT&T) and then you have an internet connection everywhere you go, without drawing down your phone's battery when you use a hotspot. It even works in the air if you're not flying too high or if you forgot to bring your phone.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JohnAJohnson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 11:20am
With the IFD or Stratux available for position information, I'd only miss the built in GPS in the hotel or home, and I think I can live with that.  And adding it for phone service would be serious mission creep.  It appears I'd blow through 64g pretty quick if I wanted to play with different apps (Fltplan Go, FlyQ, WingX, etc.).

I've decided on a 256g WIFI only model.  On order with Best Buy.  Thanks all.  Very useful information.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 5:38pm
Position information would be useful if something happens to your panel equipment, like an electrical problem or other failure. I have built a couple of Stratux units and still consider them fairly unreliable. Too many general purpose parts cobbled together to provide a specific function, with many possible failure points. They've gotten better, but mine still ate a few SD cards and had other issues before I stopped using it. There was never anything major, but still annoying failures when it was most inconvenient. I prefer to buy a purpose-built unit, like a Stratus or Sentry. 

At least AT&T allows you to turn on a data plan for a single day for something like $5.00. Nice to have should you ever need it somewhere. I also like the iPad to have its own GPS because of my use outside the plane. It can also be helpful for the Find My function if it gets misplaced or stolen. I understand the reasoning for not needing GPS reception in an iPad dedicated to the plane. It does save $129 to relinquish the function.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JohnAJohnson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2020 at 8:43pm
I agree Henry, and that'll be taken care of with my Android cell phone with one of the Android apps on it.   While I agree that GPS would be great on the iPad (your "Find My" argument is sound), it's just too much money and I have to go back to my original need - running the IFD100 and training software.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote brou0040 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jul 2020 at 10:05am
I got a mini just for the IFD100, didn't get GPS since I have that backed up in my android tablets, which I didn't have to pay extra for.  Never had problems with my androids shutting down from overheating, but the iPad, even after making a sun shade for it (because the screen isn't nearly as bright as my androids), shut down for 90% of the first approach I shot to test it...  Aviation is stuck in this "we only support apple because that is what pilots use" and "pilots use apple because that is where the apps are" cycle that needs to be broken.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jul 2020 at 12:23pm
Originally posted by brou0040 brou0040 wrote:

...Aviation is stuck in this "we only support apple because that is what pilots use" and "pilots use apple because that is where the apps are" cycle that needs to be broken.

Two thumbs up to that.

* Orest


Edited by oskrypuch - 24 Jul 2020 at 12:23pm
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Catani View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Catani Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jul 2020 at 4:48pm
Originally posted by brou0040 brou0040 wrote:

...Aviation is stuck in this "we only support apple because that is what pilots use" and "pilots use apple because that is where the apps are" cycle that needs to be broken.


More likely (IMHO) is that there is a substantial majority pilots who own and prefer to use Apple tablets in the cockpit, and would not be interested in buying Android apps.  In the annual flying budget for most pilots (who ever said flying is cheap?), I think the price difference between buying an Android or Apple tablet would be a rounding error, especially when spread over years of flying.  My Apple iPad mini is 4 years old now, and still works fine.

Why some (not all) Apple developers don't also generate software for Android products (and make even more money supplying both markets) is the real mystery, the answer to which is not the mindless circle you describe IMHO.

Android tablets owned by potential pilot customers are ignored by some Apple-only developers - especially ForeFlight, the dominate aviation app of them all.  Perhaps it's because of concerns for how their products can more easily be hacked on Android OS devices, which lack Apple's security features?  Or perhaps concerns over having their customer's personal data be vacuumed out of their app and sold to third parties, as Google's profit model requires?  Or what??  Take a guess, I have no idea.  But is seems a big issue for Android folks since complaints are often raised, and I wonder why they haven't been able to get answers to these questions yet.

My Apple iPad mini has overheated only rarely in the last 1,500 hours of flying, and then only when sunlight is shining on it and I have it on a charger (which I don't do if the battery will last the whole flight).  The solution is: don't do that.  Disconnect the charger or take it out of the sunlight when both occur at the same time - before it can overheat.  I can't remember the last time I just let the thing overheat, it's been years.  So there's a solution for both Apple lovers, as well as those Android guys grumbling about having to buy an iPad just for flying.  Overheated iPads, like running out of gas, is something that should not happen.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jul 2020 at 7:20pm
if you google "android vs ios revenues", you'll find apps for iOS have resulted in about twice the revenue as Android apps. On top of that, Android development is harder because there is more variation in the hardware it runs on. You have to test your apps in more devices and you are more likely to get hardware-related support calls. Support costs can easily kill all your profit. The iOS garden is just better better business for most. That may result in higher costs for end users, but it works better for providers, and consumers generally have a better experience. The fact that other tablets don't protect themselves when they get too hot doesn't mean the iPad is inferior. Like Catani's, mine have not shut down due to overheating in many years. When they did in the past, they were really hot due to sitting in the Texas sun, and it was not good for any electronics device to get that hot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Jul 2020 at 2:14pm
The heterogeneity of the android hardware space is certainly a challenge for producers. OTOH, it is a big plus for consumers, as it keeps prices in line and you don't have to live in the walled garden of one hardware manufacturer. But that said, many software producers have done very well in the android sphere, and most major apps are available on both.

Apple has as much of an interest in data aggregation as Google, and anyone else out there that can get their greedy hands on it. Google is more successful because they dominate the hardware and browser space. I dislike all of them, and use Firefox and Duck Duck Go, but it is a losing battle.

Apple devices just seem to run hot, iPads among the worst. Some of their laptops have even been known to desolder themselves. They make certain assumptions about use and average power generation to push size and battery life considerations. Those may be fine for the intended use of browsing and playing some tunes indoors, but falls down when you run it full out, continually on and in the sun, like you might in an aviation application. That is why they overheat and shutdown, and typically need external cooling. Android devices can overheat as well, and will shutdown, but it is comparatively rarer and it seems mainly limited to the $100 device niche.

As I'm an android guy, I have a choice of not using FF, or the IFD100, or forking over extra $ to get a single purpose device that lives in my flightbag. If you are an Apple guy, you don't have this annoyance.

It is what it is.

* Orest



Edited by oskrypuch - 25 Jul 2020 at 2:22pm
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Catani View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Catani Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Jul 2020 at 5:12pm
Originally posted by oskrypuch oskrypuch wrote:

...As I'm an android guy, I have a choice of not using FF, or the IFD100, or forking over extra $ to get a single purpose device that lives in my flightbag. If you are an Apple guy, you don't have this annoyance.


To re-phrase:

"I'm an Apple guy, I have the choice of using my iPad Pro, or forking over extra $ to get a single purpose device (my ipad mini) that lives in my flightbag.  I'm an Apple guy .... but I don't consider this annoying." [quoting myself]

So perhaps we Android/Apple guys are not so different after all Orest.  I'm just not as bothered about buying that extra cost single-purpose thingy in my flight bag.  Four Bose headsets cost much more, and three of them go unused on most flights.  My Mini is used every flight, and then it's put away just like the pricey headsets.  Who said flying was cheap?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 12:39pm
Catani,

Your mini would still be usable outside of the cockpit, same apps etc. given that you are in the Apple sphere.

For me, that is not the case, and is the point I was making. I could populate the mini with similar cross-platform apps, but not worth the effort or extra cost. And I find the iOS system quite clunky to use. (maybe someday you will get a back key!)

I always bring my Tab S5e along when I travel, and of course my Samsung S10 is in my pocket.

* Orest


Edited by oskrypuch - 27 Jul 2020 at 12:39pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 2:44pm
I think developers develop for the devices that can give them the best return for their efforts. There is no restriction on developing for another OS. In the aviation world, it seems the dice have rolled in favor of iOS and macOS. It's all business, not religion about which one to work on.

If you want to base your decision on what platform to use on the OS and hardware, then you have to make the trade off in the apps available. Most apps are pretty similar between Android and iOS. It just seems that at least for pilots, iOS has some apps people are willing to pay a lot for that are just not available under Android. Developers have made their choice. I don't know of a single Android app that I wish were available on iOS, but I have a few I'd really miss since I don't know of a full equivalent on Android. I make the trade-off to use Apple based on that.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 2:54pm
Of the mobile apps that I use, FF and the IFD100 are the only ones that do not have android equivalents. As they represent probably no more than 1% of my actual use on mobile devices, they wouldn't much drive my own decision on platform. In fact my decision on platform was made before either existed.

So, I grudgingly got the mini for the flightbag, and as I mention bring my other working gear as well.

* Orest


Edited by oskrypuch - 27 Jul 2020 at 2:55pm
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HenryM View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HenryM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 3:26pm
Thems the trade-offs! I am fortunate that for me the trade-off went the other way so I can use one device on and off the airplane. I also use Macs and iPads and my tablet has pretty much replaced my laptop for almost everything I do. I've recently started using an Apple Watch too and it is pretty helpful to unlock my Macs and to authorize various operations. It also helps when navigating with the Maps application. It is good to be within one walled garden. I assume something similar exists in the Android world, though I haven't heard anything about it.

I agree most apps have equivalents in the other OS. The only must haves for me are Foreflight and the IFD100. Aviation apps drove my direction early on too. Back then I liked WingX Pro, and it was better on iOS than on Android. Many of the apps that exist on both seem to bring out features first on iOS.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Catani Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 7:01pm
Originally posted by oskrypuch oskrypuch wrote:

Catani,

Your mini would still be usable outside of the cockpit, same apps etc. given that you are in the Apple sphere.

For me, that is not the case, and is the point I was making.

Yep, I get that you feel shorted for that reason.  My point was that I'm as shorted as you.  Meaning, just like you, I get no use out of my Mini except in the air.

The source of your problem is that you don't use your iPad for anything outside the cockpit.  That's a personal choice, as the iPad obviously works as well on the ground as in the air. You just prefer to use Android tablets on the ground. 

The source of my problem is that I don't use my Mini for anything outside the cockpit.  Like you, that's a personal choice also, as the Mini works as well on the ground as in the air.  I just prefer to use larger tablets on the ground.

The result is the same: we each buy a device for use only in the cockpit, and we both do so for personal reasons that are not compulsory.  We both could solve our "problem" by just using one tablet for everything: a single iPad.  And we both say: "Doesn't work for me!" So we both shell out more bucks to get what we want.

I do think I'm more clear on the fact this is a problem I foisted on myself.  I suspect you're more inclined to blame FF and/or the IFD100 developers for your decision.  As has been pointed out, those are business decisions those developers have made for apparently confidential reasons.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oskrypuch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2020 at 8:39pm
Originally posted by Catani Catani wrote:

[QUOTE=oskrypuch]...I suspect you're more inclined to blame FF and/or the IFD100 developers for your decision.  As has been pointed out, those are business decisions those developers have made for apparently confidential reasons.


Well, I don't think there is a lot of mystery to the decisions, and I don't see how I was parceling out "blame". As I mention in my post upthread ...

It is what it is.

As a consumer you choose.

As an aside, I was always partial to the 8" format of tablet for general use, certainly that is the better size for our cockpits too. But, the last tablet I got was 10", and I must say I have got to like it. The one thing in particular you CAN do with it, that is harder with an 8" format, is reading a newspaper in full broadform format.

* Orest


Edited by oskrypuch - 27 Jul 2020 at 8:43pm
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