Pilots are singing the praises of ForeFlight’s latest Version 5.0 update of its mobile charting app for the iPad — and after flying with the updated software, we have to agree that it’s great.
The biggest change is the addition of terrain and obstacle warnings through the Hazard Advisor feature. The add-on highlights hazardous terrain and obstacles within 1,000 feet of your aircraft’s GPS altitude. Terrain and obstacles within 100 feet are colored red and hazards within 1,000 feet are yellow. The terrain colors change smoothly and, as ForeFlight points out, they look stunning on the iPad.
A new “Terrain” map selection is also now available in Version 5.0. This base map lets you see terrain features as you fly. Both the Terrain map and Hazard Advisor require an iPad 2, iPhone 4 or newer device since the iPad 1 and iPhone 3GS don’t have the computing horsepower to display the high-resolution overlays.
ForeFlight has also greatly improved the runway situational awareness technology in ForeFlight 5.0. The new software includes Extended Runway Centerlines, which help pilots visualize runway layouts when approaching, making it easier to figure out how to plan a pattern entry.
ForeFlight has taken the concept a step further by adding “intelligence” that helps pilots select runways and then determine the runway entry pattern. Pattern entry options include straight-in, 45-degrees to the downwind, cross midfield with a teardrop entry, and cross midfield with direct entry for both standard and right-hand traffic patterns.
The Version 5.0 software is available for free download from the Apple App store. A standard subscription to ForeFlight is $74.99 per year.