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sbclark

FAA To Charge Companies For Online Charts, No Access For Individuals

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FAA To Charge Companies For Online Charts, No Access For IndividualsThis may affect all of us who fly virtual airliners with FMS capability. This will also probably affect companies like Navigraph who provide data for PMDG, LevelD, etc. If any of you have influence over members of Congress, the FAA, or other aviation associations who lobby in our interests, you have between now and December 13, 2011 to provide your inputs. This change is planned to take effect on April 5, 2012.The web link to the text below:http://www.avweb.com...ull.html#205722The days of inexpensive navigation and chart apps for your mobile devices appear to be numbered with the FAA's announcement that it will begin charging for downloads that were previously free starting April 5, 2012. A story in the December issue of our sister publication Aviation Consumer says the Aeronautical Navigational Products Directorate (Aeronav), which currently makes the latest charts and other navigational products available online for free, says it has to recover the costs associated with developing and hosting the products. That means charging fees to companies for those downloads and no longer allowing individuals access them at all. As of April 5, only those with distribution contracts with Aeronav will be able to download the data. The most noticeable impact will likely be on the small but increasingly popular industry segment (like ForeFlight and WingX) that develops flight-related apps for iPads and other consumer electronics. It will also have an impact on websites like RunwayFinder that use the data for their online products, some of which are currently available for free. How much impact isn't known because the FAA hasn't announced what it intends to charge for the data. Affected companies have been invited to a meeting Dec. 13 in Washington to hear details of the FAA's proposal and offer input to the final pricing structure and the distribution contract.Industry officials told Aviation Consumer that the market will likely reject significant increases in cost for apps and online products. Smaller providers and free websites may simply go out of business. Larger companies may try to keep their subscribers but with higher subscription prices. The pervasive fear in the industry is that this could lead to only one or two entities controlling the market for the distribution of government-produced information that is essential for flight safety. Aeronav spokeswoman Abigail Smith told Aviation Consumer the agency is determined not to let that happen but the new fees, whatever they are, will have to be enough to cover costs. "Because we're legislated, we can't collect more money than our cost," she said. "We're committed to the most affordable product line for the end user. But if revenue diminishes, the product line diminishes." Under the new contract structure, the FAA will also set standards for those using FAA data to create their products. There have been issues with data being made inaccessible in the production of some apps and the standards will ensure that all information on printed charts is available in any digital versionBill Clark


Bill Clark
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This is bad news, all the way around, for those of us who fly in real life as well as simming.FAA's Mission Statement: "We're not happy until you're not happy" - looks like they're going the extra nautical mile to accomplish their mission.


Jim Blake
Captain, SWA Virtual Airlines
Real World C172 Pilot, AOPA #06034701
 sig_concordeX.jpg  Boeing777_Banner_Pilot.jpg

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Guest jahman
...FAA's Mission Statement: "We're not happy until you're not happy" - looks like they're going the extra nautical mile to accomplish their mission.
ROTFL!This might be heresy to some, but personally I think AIRAC cycles are a PITA for simming, especially considering runway designators are fixed in the scenery.Cheers,- jahman.

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lame...


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ROTFL!This might be heresy to some, but personally I think AIRAC cycles are a PITA for simming, especially considering runway designators are fixed in the scenery.Cheers,- jahman.
While I don't strive to sim in a uber-realistic environment, this was my initial reaction when I read this post. I want things to be accurate to what I have in the sim. Of course, I am sure I am in the minority.

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Aren't charts like from years ago good enough for FS? It's not like anything in FS is changing.

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Nor for those of us who enjoy realistic flight on vatsim or the other major networks...


|Ryan Butterworth|

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Guest jahman

And how realistic is it to have an ILS plate titled "ILS RWY XX" and FSX disply RWY "YY" at the instead, with the ILS not ligned-up with the runway to boot?Cheers,- jahman.

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Man, this just plain stinks.I use Voyager (freeware and payware real world planner) with incorporated plates and scanned VFR charts, so will always have those to back-up with, in addition to a complete old set(s) zipped up in storage.Our tax money at work.....or not.Most all Countries have gone to free downloadable charts and plates, so the U.S. seems to be taking a different approach (pun intended) to most others...unless the others follow suite.


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It may be no big deal now but what about 5 or more years from now? New airport construction, new airfield layouts, etc.... Eventually it will impact us, especially those that fly online...


Eric 

 

 

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I don't have a problem with it. Pay to play is what I say.


Cpt. C. Oveur

Microsoft Flight Simulator ATP license holder (DEC, all airlines, all types).

10 Gazillion "hardcore" PIC hours. ( x8 speed).

Autolanding certified for every single airport in the world. (Including the grass ones.)

Type rated in the Air Creation 582-SL Trike Ultralight. (TRI/TRE).

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Guest jahman
It may be no big deal now but what about 5 or more years from now?...
Hopefully we will all be simming happily under the aegis of MS Flight! :Big Grin:Cheers,- jahman.

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The great free sites like Skyvector are my biggest concern on such news.The FAA may just react on the companies selling their free stuff to others, with more or less additional work, and some revenue. So a part of me says that it might be somehow reasonable while I think that they should act more clever, sort of like Google does when it comes to a commercial use of their free 'Earth' and 'Maps'. The non-commercial one still is free, which is great for freeware devs for example.A Magdec update plus current charts and current navdata are a big fun in FSX by the way. An ILS, by design, will centre the Localizer either way, even if your course setting and display was a bit off. With the small Magdec update, even the non-precision approaches will look good and close to rw charts though.When using chart software like Aivlasoft EFB, you gain even more precision as the charts are rendered in regard to your scenery.Thanks to addon scenery, your favourite places in the sim may already be very current in regards of the layout and attached navaids by the way. The only bigger sign of age in FSX may arise enroute, but you could even alter those VORs and NDB if you like. The Magdec author offers some help there.So it's not that an old sim stays an old sim by design.

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Hopefully we will all be simming happily under the aegis of MS Flight! Big Grin.gifCheers,- jahman.
That's right!! and back in the 1970's we could fly all around Oahu in a Cessna 150 with no charts!!LOL.gifClown.gifLMAO.gif

Sam

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