Flight Log - November, 2015
Seattle Avionics Logo
Dear Fellow Pilot,

Welcome to fall!  Hopefully you've survived eating leftover Halloween candy and raking leaves.  

November is our favorite month at Seattle Avionics because it means we're preparing for our annual Black Friday deals.  As you may know, for the past five years, we've offered insanely good deals on many different products for just one day -- often as much as 80% off ChartData for FlyQ, Dynon, Aspen, GRT, Bendix-King, etc.  This year -- well -- let's just say if you miss Black Friday you'll kick yourself as these are our most spectacular offers ever.  Quantities are always quite limited so click here to be notified about the deals before they're all taken!

BlogWe also publish a blog with info about new app releases, issues with various iOS versions, special offers (hint, hint), service interruptions, alerts when new monthly data is released, and more.  We VERY STRONGLY suggest you look at the Blog and then use the Follow section on the right side to get an email when we make a new blog entry.  

That said, this newsletter is not about sales but about products so let's get into that.

Quick summary points in case you're short on time:
  • Webinar Week and Webinar Wednesday.  Next week -- Webinar Week -- we're doing a webinar each day at different times.  Webinars are live, interactive presentations you watch from your PC or Mac.  Our presentations cover a variety of different topics and experience levels.  After that, we're doing a webinar for new users every Wednesday.  Our webinars are always free and always get great reviews.  All you need to do is click here to sign up for the ones you're interested in.
  • Do you fly for the Civil Air Patrol?  If so, please click here as we'd like to hear from you because FlyQ EFB version 2.2 includes extensive CAP and arial photographic search patterns.  We want to ensure it's what you and your squadron need.  We're also doing a special Webinar about our CAP support on Tuesday, November 24 at 5 PM Pacific.
  • FlyQ EFB 2.1.1 was released about three weeks ago.  It fixed several bugs, most notably a problem with the internal GPS and iOS 9 as well as added support for the exciting new Stratux ADS-B project (That's not a spelling mistake; we support the Stratus^, too, but Stratux is an open-source do-it-yourself project that is taking aviation by storm.)  If you don't already have FlyQ EFB 2.1.1, click here to find out how to get it.
  • FlyQ Pocket from Seattle Avionics for the iPhone and Android replaces AOPA FlyQ Pocket.  We're preparing to release a new version with some changes but, for now, the current AOPA version will still work.  With the next release, you'll no longer need to be an AOPA member to use the app on your phone or iPad for free.  The update will be transparent so you won't need to uninstall AOPA FlyQ Pocket.
  • ATLAS, our new online aviation information / flight planning system has had two more beta releases in the past month and we're moving rapidly to full release.  If you haven't checked it out yet, it's definitely time to.  The seamless integration between FlyQ EFB, FlyQ Pocket, and ATLAS is really amazing.
Each month, the newsletter will cover what's new with our products, include helpful tips and tricks on using them, and sometimes look ahead to what's coming soon.  Back issues can be read from our Web site, under the Company tab.
I'm Steve Podradchik, the CEO here.  I write the newsletter so email me personally if there is something you'd like me to cover next month.  My email address is stevep@seattleavionics.com.

What's New

November is always our busiest month of the year and this year is no different.

 Webinar Week and Webinar Wednesday

Seattle Avionics takes product training very seriously -- hence all our YouTube videos, the 7 Day Challenge training series, our comprehensive Pilot's Guide, and more.  In the past, we have done Webinars frequently but haven't been so good about it lately.  That changes right now.

Next week is what we're calling Webinar Week.  Every day next week, at a variety of different times, we're doing an all-new webinar about a particular product and experience level (e.g. intro vs. advanced).  Webinars are Web-based, live, interactive presentations you can join from a PC, Mac, or even iPad or Android tablet.  As they're interactive, you can even ask questions and see them answered live.

Even better, from now on we'll be doing a webinar every Wednesday (Webinar Wednesday) to help new users.

Webinars are free but you do need to sign-up so we can plan appropriately for them.  Just click here to sign-up and select the ones you're interested in.  You can change your selection later, of course, and you'll get reminder emails before each one you sign-up for.

Also, please email me if there are other topics you'd like to see covered.

 FlyQ EFB 2.1.1 Released

FlyQ EFB 2.0 was released just over a month ago yet we've already made two more releases because we've moved to what we call a "rapid release" mode.  In a nutshell, that means instead of spending months on new releases with lots of features per release, we now doing more frequent releases with fewer features per release.  It also means fixing bugs faster.

Version 2.1.1, released in late October, primarily fixed bugs but also extended our ADS-B support to even more systems.  The most important bug fix was adapting to a subtle change that Apple made in iOS 9 that affected how we worked with an internal iPad GPS.  Before 2.1.1, an iPad with iOS 9.x would not work reliably with an internal GPS although external GPS and ADS-B users were not affected.

Version 2.1.1 also fixed some memory usage and performance issues with approach plates and other bugs.  Click for details.

 Stratux ADS-B Project

FlyQ EFB supports something like 20 different ADS-B receivers and transceivers (In + Out) including Stratus, Clarity, FreeFlight, NavWorx, Dual, iLevil, SkyRadar, and more. Those are commercial, ready-to-go units.  But many, many pilots prefer to build and fly their own planes so it only makes sense that one of the hottest ADS-B receivers around now is a home-built DIY project called Stratux.

Stratux in the Plane

Stratux is the brainchild of Chris Young who thought that he could use the popular Raspberry Pi computer to put together a great ADS-B receiver for much less than the commercial units.  And was he right!  For about $100 in parts, you can build a fully-functional single-channel ADS-B receiver for traffic and weather.  Even add an AHRS if you like.  The resulting receiver works great with FlyQ EFB and most other iPad and Android apps.

"A fairly decent number of pilots are involved," said Chris Young.  "Some have contributed in test flight hours, some in contributing to code improvements, and others in hardware improvements."

Stratux Parts

Seattle Avionics worked with Chris on some initial protocol issues and added code to FlyQ EFB version 2.1.1 to fully support the Stratux just like we support all the commercial systems.

"Hopefully the advances in DIY electronics and homebuilt aircraft can start driving down the costs of avionics, or at least non-certified devices like portable ADS-B receivers," added Chris.

You don't need to be Tony Stark (Iron Man) to assemble a Stratux as it's relatively easy to build and the DIY community that has grown around the Stratux is terrific.  Still, building your own ADS-B isn't for everyone.  If you're not comfortable around electronic components and doing a little file copying, you might want to stick with the commercial devices.  But if you have a little time and some interest in seeing how an ADS-B receiver works, it's a great project that makes you a safer pilot and saves a lot of money.

 FlyQ Pocket from Seattle Avionics
FlyQ Pocket
Way back in 2012 (an eternity in the tech world), Seattle Avionics introduced an iPhone app called Voyager FreeFlight.  It put great aviation weather, flight planning, and airport information into your hand.  It was free and extremely popular.
About the same time, AOPA was looking to offer a more comprehensive, modern app than their old AOPA Airport app.

Finding common ground, we rebranded our Voyager FreeFlight as AOPA FlyQ Pocket and the product quickly became the most popular aviation app around with nearly 100,000 users.  The app required AOPA membership.

Fast forward to 2015 and we now have FlyQ Pocket back and will soon be introducing a new version with great new features.  Among other things, the new version will remain free but will be available to all pilots, with or without AOPA membership.

When Seattle Avionics started in 2002 there was no such thing as the iPad, Microsoft's hot new operating system was called Windows XP, and the Beatles were still together (well....)

Not surprisingly, Voyager, our first aviation app was for Microsoft Windows.  Voyager that did some pretty amazing things for the time including wind-optimized flight planning, 3D synthetic vision, support for tablet PCs, scanned and seamless maps, and geo-referenced approach plates.  Even today, we have thousands of customers who use it for flight planning because it's still the very best flight planner out there.

But times change and today's pilot is much more likely to use an iPad or a Web-based system to plan a flight or look up fuel prices, weather, or airport information.  We already have the iPad covered with FlyQ EFB and we've been working on a Web-based alternative for our venerable Windows application for some time.  The new system is code-named ATLAS and it's been in beta for several months.  In essence, we merged the best of Voyager and FlyQ into one comprehensive app and made it work in all major Web browsers.


With ATLAS you're now free to use that big-screen monitor on your Mac or PC to plan a flight.  It really beats the pants off a 10 inch iPad screen!  Best of all, flight plans, aircraft profiles, and pilot profiles are automatically shared between FlyQ EFB on the iPad, ATLAS on a PC or Mac, and FlyQ Pocket on your phone!

During the past few months, we've made several new beta releases and we're getting close to having a "shipping" version of the app.  The last beta release (this week) added a great new printed NavLog that's perfect for taking into the plane in case all those fancy electronic gizmos fail.

You can try ATLAS now.  Keep in mind it's still in beta so there are some known issues and some features not yet in (including most of the weather layers on the map).

Log in with your FlyQ email/password or use the Create Account button in the upper right corner to get a new account for free.  Please be sure to click the ? icon at the top to see the known bugs and unimplemented features and use the Feedback button to send bugs, suggestions, and comments to use.

 What's Coming Up

Version 2.2 - Civil Air Patrol Patterns, Improved TFRs
Version 2.2 of FlyQ EFB will be available by the end of the month.  In addition to a few bug fixes, it's mostly about dramatically improving TFRs and adding 8 very flexible patterns for CAP and aerial photography missions.  

The TFR system has been completely re-thought for version 2.2.  We previously got a data feed produced by Jeppesen (under contract with the FAA) that proved, well, less than perfect.  We now get the data directly from the FAA and it's spot-on accurate.  We also get information about each and every sporting event subject to the mysterious sports TFR rule.  You see both normal and sports TFRs on the map using colors to indicate if they're current (red) or pending (orange).  Tapping a TFR now also has dramatically more detail and is much faster to read and interpret than our old system.


The CAP and photographic patterns were designed in conjunction with several CAP groups, but if you're a CAP pilot, we want to get you onto the version 2.2 beta and talk to you about how to make it even better.  Please click here to help us.  FlyQ EFB 2.2 has more CAP and aerial photography patterns than a Garmin G1000 and more than any other iPad app that we're aware of.  A simple visual preview of each pattern makes it very easy to use.  Combined with the existing grid pattern overlays (choice of Gridded Sectionals, Cell, or GARS), we think FlyQ EFB 2.2 is the easiest, most efficient way to plan search and rescue and photo reconnoissance missions.

Search and Rescue Patterns

We'd love it if you and all your fellow CAP pilots join us for a very special CAP/Aerial Photography webinar on Tuesday, November 23.  Click to sign up.

Version 2.3 - Dynon Flight Planning and GPS/AHRS Integration
We've supplied our ChartData for the great Dynon SkyView system for years.  With FlyQ EFB version 2.3, you'll be able to plan on FlyQ EFB or ATLAS then almost instantly move the flight plan to SkyView.  FlyQ EFB will also use the WAAS GPS and AHRS feed from SkyView.  Version 2.3 is expected very soon after FlyQ EFB 2.2.

Upcoming Events

Black Friday, November 27, 2015.  The quantity-limited aviation sales event you don't want to miss!  Click here to be notified the moment the offers are announced.


Steve Podradchik
CEO, Seattle Avionics

^ Stratus and Stratus 2 are trademarks of AFS, LLC. Seattle Avionics and AFS have no business agreement or relationship and AFS has not endorsed or approved FlyQ's support of their products.
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