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Kattz

A proposal for PMDG, in case they're not doing it already!

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What about a stand-alone EFB?  Not the EFB for the T7.  Something we can buy separately and use no matter what add-ons we have.  There's one out there from another vendor, and I bought it, and absolutely despise it.  Don't ask me the name, group, because I don't want to crap on them, just that I personally don't like it.  It has a lot of... shall we say, inaccuracies?

 

Anyway, if anyone could do it right, I think PMDG could.

 

How about it?  Robert?  Tabs?  I'm not expecting a "Yes, we"re going to do that" answer, just think about it.  The market is there.

 

Best,

 

Kev

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Is the market really there though? They say only a fraction of people that buy their products actually have an AVSIM account. And I can guarantee you that not every single person here wants or needs an EFB. So I highly doubt it will happen, because there really may not be the market.

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Kev,

 

While the idea of a fully functional and external EFB is good in theory. PMDG has a knack for an unprecedented level of realism in all of their products. The problems involved with a fully functional EFB (mainly licensing data from my understanding) is the main reason it won't be included in the T7. (Also not standard on all T7)

 

I'm sure someone can either quote or post a link to the previous PMDG remarks about the limitations of an accurately modeled EFB.

 

 

Happy Flying,

 

Nathan

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It's already been done very well by Aivlasoft anyway

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It's already been done very well by Aivlasoft anyway

works great

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I personally use PDF Kneebord for displaying charts in the FSX environment and all sorts of things from my computer like reading checklists,manuals etc to keep me busy during longer flights so I don't really nedd a EFB because this acts like one.Also the best place are Navigraph Charts which I higly recommend if you are serious into flying procedures like in the real world.So for me these two addons are really great:)

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What's EFB?

Electronic Flight Bag.It replaces paper documents into one single display that pilots can access with ease on the flightdeck.

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I was thinking of this but like you get the EFB working in the background, where you manualy set your flight plan and clearnces

 

Then u send it to the FSX and you get to see the pages exactly as in real world

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Define what you want in an EFB, though.

 

I think a lot of simmers don't fully understand what the EFB is all about.  There are/were a lot of things in a pilot bag that a lot of them aren't concentrating on, so they assume it's very simple.

 

There are charts.

These charts are going to be the bulk of the cost of licensing the data.  While you may think the market is there, we don't have the buying power that and airline exec does, as he or she has real numbers to hand them: "we have 4,000 pilots and we're going to send that business to you - allow us to tailor out chart subscription at this price."  That'll work there, but not so much here.  That'll be a significant cost, because even if we tried bulk licensing, we'd lose the customization some would need.  I don't really fly outside the US/Carrib/Canada, so I wouldn't want to pay for the whole world, and I'm sure others would feel the same about their part of the world.  Bulk licensing, though, would likely force us into world data, or some section thereof.

 

There are performance calculations.

In many aircraft, there's a whiz wheel of sorts (though I was never sure if it was issued to the pilots, or remained in the plane - could be dependent on the airline, too).  Pilots ran performance calcs on them, and now, software in the EFB does that for you.  Licensing that data costs money if you're looking for the realism we expect from vendors like PMDG.  That will be an additional cost, though I'm not sure how significant.  If the data is licensed for a specific aircraft, how do we add other profiles?  Does that come from the other developer?  What if that developer isn't interested in supporting it?  As an example, say PMDG licenses the data for all of their products, we'll have 737, 777, and 747 data.  Then developer X creates an A320 family, but doesn't license the data.  Now the EFB doesn't have the same effect as it should.  Developers have buying power that we do not.  Whoever has that data probably isn't interested in single-user data sales.

 

There are reference books.

The EFB also generally contains some amount of aircraft info in the form of manuals.  Additionally, some include regulations, and other informative manuals.  Aside from the real aircraft manuals, the regulations could be a challenge in certain countries (here, though, you can snag a ton of PDFs right off the FAA website).  As the aircraft manuals generally have to be licensed, the issues from the performance data are the same here: we don't have the buying power as individuals, so getting the data is contingent on the dev.

 

Ad hoc features.

Different EFBs have other features, and different classes of EFB also have certain restrictions.  As an example, the EFB I use when flying GA is wholly different from a Class III EFB, as I can close out of the EFB app on my personal EFB, while the Class III is a dedicated device.  Each manufacturer also has some sort of selling point on their EFB related to additional features.

 

 

 

Granted, from adversity comes innovative ideas and change, so I know someone will eventually get us a good EFB in the sim realm, I just don't think that's right now.  Perhaps when the airlines have converted so much that it drives the cost down it will be more possible.

 

Then again, data is also somewhat like gasoline.  People need it, and that's a relative constant.  Whoever has the data is unlikely to drop those prices if it makes them money.  The money is where the data is.

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Define what you want in an EFB, though.

 

I think a lot of simmers don't fully understand what the EFB is all about.  There are/were a lot of things in a pilot bag that a lot of them aren't concentrating on, so they assume it's very simple.

 

There are charts.

These charts are going to be the bulk of the cost of licensing the data.  While you may think the market is there, we don't have the buying power that and airline exec does, as he or she has real numbers to hand them: "we have 4,000 pilots and we're going to send that business to you - allow us to tailor out chart subscription at this price."  That'll work there, but not so much here.  That'll be a significant cost, because even if we tried bulk licensing, we'd lose the customization some would need.  I don't really fly outside the US/Carrib/Canada, so I wouldn't want to pay for the whole world, and I'm sure others would feel the same about their part of the world.  Bulk licensing, though, would likely force us into world data, or some section thereof.

 

There are performance calculations.

In many aircraft, there's a whiz wheel of sorts (though I was never sure if it was issued to the pilots, or remained in the plane - could be dependent on the airline, too).  Pilots ran performance calcs on them, and now, software in the EFB does that for you.  Licensing that data costs money if you're looking for the realism we expect from vendors like PMDG.  That will be an additional cost, though I'm not sure how significant.  If the data is licensed for a specific aircraft, how do we add other profiles?  Does that come from the other developer?  What if that developer isn't interested in supporting it?  As an example, say PMDG licenses the data for all of their products, we'll have 737, 777, and 747 data.  Then developer X creates an A320 family, but doesn't license the data.  Now the EFB doesn't have the same effect as it should.  Developers have buying power that we do not.  Whoever has that data probably isn't interested in single-user data sales.

 

There are reference books.

The EFB also generally contains some amount of aircraft info in the form of manuals.  Additionally, some include regulations, and other informative manuals.  Aside from the real aircraft manuals, the regulations could be a challenge in certain countries (here, though, you can snag a ton of PDFs right off the FAA website).  As the aircraft manuals generally have to be licensed, the issues from the performance data are the same here: we don't have the buying power as individuals, so getting the data is contingent on the dev.

 

Ad hoc features.

Different EFBs have other features, and different classes of EFB also have certain restrictions.  As an example, the EFB I use when flying GA is wholly different from a Class III EFB, as I can close out of the EFB app on my personal EFB, while the Class III is a dedicated device.  Each manufacturer also has some sort of selling point on their EFB related to additional features.

 

 

 

Granted, from adversity comes innovative ideas and change, so I know someone will eventually get us a good EFB in the sim realm, I just don't think that's right now.  Perhaps when the airlines have converted so much that it drives the cost down it will be more possible.

 

Then again, data is also somewhat like gasoline.  People need it, and that's a relative constant.  Whoever has the data is unlikely to drop those prices if it makes them money.  The money is where the data is.

 

 

Nothing to add to that well spoken Kyle.

 

The Aivlasoft EFB is a brilliant piece of software you really should consider trying that it has everything you need checklists charts online traffic info etc etc

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It's already been done very well by Aivlasoft anyway

One could also say that the 777 has already been done well by "that other company"... Then why are we waiting for this 777? For the same reason i started this thread.

 

Ok, I admit that I have the Aivlasoft EFB. I hate it. My personal opinion, if you have it and love it, fine. I'm glad it works for you. Please don't make this about Aivlasoft's product.

 

My argument is that in this post, how many piped up and said that the above product is great, works fine, etc? This indicates demand just based on this thread. How many users of this EFB don't subscribe to AVSIM or have read this thread?

 

Yes, in my opinion, the demand for a solid, sound EFB is there. That's why I bought a product that I don't like. Liked the demo, found too many bugs against the charts and plates when I got the real thing. The accuracy is higher in European areas than in the US in my experience, even after the latest updates.

 

It was just an idea...

 

Kev

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But one would be lying.

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From what I understand, PMDG will be eventually making an EFB (once licensing issues are resolved) but it will only be compatible with their own products, so not exactly stand-alone as you suggest. I think making an EFB that's completely stand-alone could potentially be better for simmers, not necessarily for PMDG as a business. 

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But one would be lying.

In your opinion, with respect. There are simmers who love that thing. Not me. Obviously not you.

 

I am disappointed in my purchase. I think someone else could do a better job. Again, my opinion. Why not PMDG?

From what I understand, PMDG will be eventually making an EFB (once licensing issues are resolved) but it will only be compatible with their own products, so not exactly stand-alone as you suggest. I think making an EFB that's completely stand-alone could potentially be better for simmers, not necessarily for PMDG as a business.

 

Thanks for that. I was not aware and appreciate your heads-up.

 

Best,

 

Kev

Kev,

 

While the idea of a fully functional and external EFB is good in theory. PMDG has a knack for an unprecedented level of realism in all of their products. The problems involved with a fully functional EFB (mainly licensing data from my understanding) is the main reason it won't be included in the T7. (Also not standard on all T7)

 

I'm sure someone can either quote or post a link to the previous PMDG remarks about the limitations of an accurately modeled EFB.

 

 

Happy Flying,

 

Nathan

Thanks, Nathan. I didn't see that discussion during my search.

 

Kev

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Personally, if you look at today's avionics as well as EFBs, IPAD utilities for maintenance, etc., they're all custom and specific to that aircraft or customers needs.

 

Having said that...an EFB for the simming world would NOT detract from realism because it could be made for simming the simming needs.  VATSIM, charts (navdata, etc.), or whatever else you wanted and able to interface with the other utilities out there.  And it could be claimed that it is REAL for our needs and not needed to be real to a real airline's or manufacturers' specific pages in that EFB.

 

In other words, if PMDG did an EFB it would only need to be real for their product and be based loosely on a particular real world counterpart, and would technically be considered as real as it would need to be.

 

I don't know if that makes any sense and obviously given the caveats of developing such a product would be a pretty large undertaking. 

 

I think we're at the point where we can claim flight simming can be just as real as real world simming or what you would do at a particular airline in some cases.  Lets face it, it's all about information flow rather than standard six pack flying with a flight engineer. 

 

I think life is starting to imitate art now versus the other way around.

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It was just an idea...

 

...and a decent one at that.

 

Sorry if my post came across gruff.  As usual, thinking outside of the box is one of your strong points.  Hopefully, as I mentioned in my earlier post, some breakthrough will make all the data easier to get to.

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I don't want an EFB since I have a Nexus 10 tablet for viewing charts. A performance calculator? It's great but not necessary now. Why do I say that? Because we'll likely have to wait longer to get our hands on the 777.

 

To round things up, I would love to have a performance calculator BUT not now! I want my 777 ASAP!!!

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Get an iPad or similar and put your charts etc. on it and you've pretty much got one.  Now if only TOPCAT would work on a tablet of some sort!!

 

Cheers,

Rudy

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Gents-

 

Whether an EFB is stand alone or integrated into our existing product lines doesn't change the cost equation at all.

 

The major pieces of functionality inside an EFB require access to chart data.  Charts cost money...  Something to the tune of $1,200/year per device for large airlines....

 

At that cost level it isn't directly feasible unless/until we find another alternative.

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Gents-

 

Whether an EFB is stand alone or integrated into our existing product lines doesn't change the cost equation at all.

 

The major pieces of functionality inside an EFB require access to chart data.  Charts cost money...  Something to the tune of $1,200/year per device for large airlines....

 

At that cost level it isn't directly feasible unless/until we find another alternative.

To be honest, the charts would be the least important feature for me.  Most of them can be found through the individual country's web sites.  It's tempting to want to use Jepps all the time, but who can justify the cost for the simming world, even though it's pretty close for most people to probably want to do it..

 

I think the more important features would be the performance and flight planning data that can be inputted from the EFB to the FMC.

 

I'm guessing you guys have 90-99% of the data you would need for most of those features as you've essentially created or recreated Boeing itself...lol.  Minus that nasty 2% that would probably take 98% more time to make...hehe.

 

Anyways, just thinking.  :P

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Gents-

 

Whether an EFB is stand alone or integrated into our existing product lines doesn't change the cost equation at all.

 

The major pieces of functionality inside an EFB require access to chart data.  Charts cost money...  Something to the tune of $1,200/year per device for large airlines....

 

At that cost level it isn't directly feasible unless/until we find another alternative.

 

As the person above said, I don't think the actual chart data is the most important aspect of an integrated EFB. I'd be more than content with some kind of software (built into the load/livery manager) which can process PDFs and various image files into a format that will load on the EFB - so we can then just find charts online or stick in the briefing created by PFPX (even if this is somewhat unconventional and unrealistic). 

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Now if only TOPCAT would work on a tablet of some sort!!

 

It should work in x86 architecture Windows tablets. Those are more expensive though as they are more or less proper laptop replacements.

 

 

 


It's tempting to want to use Jepps all the time,

Personally, I don't care that much for Jepps, I very much prefer LIDO. I do think though that if PMDG ever gets a solid enough deal, it is more likely it will be with Jeppesen, what with it being a Boeing company and all...

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pilot.jpg

 

I ONLY KIND OF UNDERSTAND WHAT EFBs ARE AND DO, BUT I WANT ONE!!!

 

 

 

...seriously.  If I were part PMDG, I'm sure I'd take all of this as a compliment related to the quality of work done, but there's a separation of work in the world for a reason: specialization.  PMDG has the planes, and a few cursory related applications (options/load manager/livery manager) as their specialty.  TOPCAT and those kinds have performance data calculations.

 

The purpose of the EFB concept is to minimize the amount of paper carried by crews, make pushing and managing that paper easier, and add the ability to run computer-type activities.

-You're sitting at a computer, so carrying vast amounts of paper through miles of terminal really isn't an issue (even if you're still in the dark ages of printing - no offense meant, to each their own.)

-The PMDG plane you bought has PDF manuals, and even if you have the printed version, you're not having to lug it around.

-TOPCAT exists, so you can run performance calculations there.

 

I still don't really see why so many people are so obsessed with computer ports of EFBs.

 

Please [developer] - I really want a computer version of the technology that was made to be a mini version of a computer for portability (or in the case of mounted EFBs, mountability and minimal weight), to put on my computer!!!

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