App-Unhappy – American Airlines Planes Delayed on the Ground by iPad App Error
Dozens of American Airlines Planes were grounded yesterday due to a glitch in an iPad App used by the pilots for navigation. A glitch in an app used for navigation is thought to have caused the pilots’ and co-pilots’ iPads to crash simultaneously. The incident was very unusual and affected several flights across the U.S.A. as without the iPads working, pilots had no flight-plan. Some of the pilots had to return to the airport terminals for a Wi-Fi connection and were then able to reboot the device and take to the sky.
American Airlines ditched paper in 2013 to cut down on the weight that staff had to take on board. The firm projected that the replacement of paper by iPads would save more than $1.2m in annual fuel costs as staff had previously taken as much as 16kg of paper maps and books each. American Airlines is not the only company to make this transition, with Delta and United Airlines also equipping their staff with tablets to reduce flight bag weights.
This move to tablets was not common knowledge in the public realm prior to yesterday and might have some airlines prolonging the use of old-fashioned paper co-ordinates until they are reassured of the impossibility of this happening again.