There’s a pretty plane!

A friend of mine suggested this as a blog post, the top aviation apps that I use on my phone. Now, keep in mind, I’m a pilot. So some of the apps I use, such as ForeFlight, wouldn’t make much sense unless you are a pilot (or have had some kind of pilot training). I’m not including pricing on these simply because they could change, but some have both a free and paid tier. Another disclaimer, the links below are to the iOS versions. Most of these are also available in the Google Play store, so you can search there to find them if you are on Android. So, here’s the list!

  • FlightRadar24: Ever wonder which plane just rattled the windows over your house? Or what that tiny spec is waaaaaaay up there? FlightRadar24 will identify aircraft who are participating in the ATC system with call sign information and details about the flight.
  • ForeFlight: I was an early adopter of this one. I switched from my handheld Garmin aviation GPS as soon as this was practical and moved to an entirely digital flight bag. For the first couple of years, I carried backup paper, but now I only carry this. You can do all manner of planning, filing, briefing, weathering, and ADS-B…ing…
  • FlightAware: Some of you know I run an ADS-B Receiver out of my house, and this gets me access to FlightAware for free. There are some things that FlightAware can do that FlightRadar24 can’t and vice versa. I tend to use them both, but FlightAware is usually the one I pop out before FlightRadar24.
  • LiveATC: I like to listen to Air Traffic Control conversations to keep my skills up, so I’ll fire up a tower of an interesting airport and listen for a bit. Every major airport in the US is included (and several international including HF channels for long oceanic routes). Also great (albeit slightly delayed) if you are sitting at an airport and want to have an audio track to go along with the things you see!
  • AeroWeather: ForeFlight has much more from a weather perspective included in its functionality, but AeroWeather gives me a quick, decoded view of nearby METAR reports that are useful in every day life, much less aviation life. 

If you have a favorite aviation app, tweet me! 

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