While the iPad is proving to be a very popular and useful tool for aviators – both on the ground and in the air – I think a great many of us would like to be able to see real time XM weather on it while airborn. The day when that is possible may be near. Airguide Publications, who offers the Flight Guide iEFB for iPad, is taking pre-orders for an external GPS receiver that connects to the iPad by WI-FI. The Fly-Wi GPS includes the WAAS GPS receiver and a wireless transmitter that creates a WI-FI hot spot in the cockpit.
While this already looks like a good add on for the iPad, Airguide also included a teaser that really got my attention. Quoting from their web site:
As an added bonus the Flight Guide FLY-Wi GPS includes an auxiliary jack that, with future updates to Flight Guide iEFB, will give pilots an in-flight weather option for integrating XM or ADS-B to display on Flight Guide iEFB seamless charts!
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It is about time. Why is weather works sticking with Windows platforms? Geez.
SkyRadar has a GPS/ADS-B receiver that we use in our aircraft and it works well, giving us in-flight radar and weather reports for many airports. This works with WingX and does so quite well. We are still evaluating it full extent but at present the limited range, at altitude (the flight levels) seems to be 2 to 3 hundred miles in all directions. We will be looking at its coverage out west soon but for now, it works well.
Baron Mobile Link already provides a wireless interface between XM weather and iPads. Works with Foreflight, Garmin Pilot (iOS and Android),and GlobalNavSource. I have used it for XM in flight and it works. To my knowledge Foreflight only supports Mobil Link for XM weather.
It looks from the pre-release ver 5.0 info that FlightGuide will support four weather boxes but not the MobilLink? I have always liked FightGuide books for airport info and it is my hope they will support the Mobile Link product so that I can use one piece of gear across all software applications that I might use. Since I already have a Baron Mobile Link there is not a chance I will buy another box just for FlightGuide iEFB.