Surface Pro 3 Hits the Skies – Airlines Equip Their Pilots

surface laptop

Airlines equip their pilots with Surface Pro 3:

We just came back from Puerto Rico. We were there to sign our lease and get some things organized – in case you haven’t heard, yes, we are moving there!

Our flight had a “stopover” (stay on the same plane) in Nashville, which by the way, I hadn’t realized that a direct flight can include stopovers, as long as they are not “layovers” (change planes).


So, anyway, we had a 1 hour stopover and I peered into the open cockpit trying to get a quick picture – hopefully without getting into trouble. Lo and behold, the captain invited me to come in and gave me a tour – it was awesome – thank you Southwest Airlines!

There were so many high-tech instruments and gadgets in the cockpit that I was tickled pink. There were also a bunch of papers that the pilot was looking over – I assume they were flight schedules and checklists. Seeing those papers in the middle of all of those high-tech displays, of course, got me thinking about an article I recently read regarding other airlines using the Surface Pro 3 to equip their pilots.

airlines equip their pilots with Surface Pro 3

Surface Pro 3 tablets mounted in the cockpits of the Austrian Airlines fleet (© Austrian Airlines)

A while back, we wrote a post about Surface Pro 3 being cleared for take off, see post Surface Pro 3.

Austrian Airlines is already in the process of deploying Surface Pro 3 tablets to their cockpits and expect to have over 1,000 installed by the end of the year. The goal is to move to completely paperless operations with the help of Surface Pro 3s. In fact, they are already running tests to see how it goes.

Dr. Philipp Haller, B777-Pilot and head of EFB-project at Austrian Airlines said this:

“Starting in the late 1990s with the arrival of the first laptops in
the flight deck, the dream of a completely paperless cockpit is now
actually becoming a reality thanks to the Surface tablets from
Microsoft.”

Way cool!

Deutsche Lufthansa Airlines has also purchased over 5,000 Surface Pro 3 for their flight pilots. They are hoping to improve productivity of their flight crews both in flight and on the ground with the use of these devices. They expect to have them all rolled out with the project completed by spring.

Surface Pro 3 to connect to on-board power and data systems in the cockpit. Microsoft states that these mounts:

"leverage the same single connection found on the Surface Pro 3 
Docking Station – allowing Surface Pro 3 to plug directly into the 
plane’s electronics through a unique interface to provide simultan-
eous power, data and display connectivity through one simple connec-
tion."

These are just a couple examples of Surface Pro 3 proliferating throughout the business enterprise and it is only the beginning – there are many other organizations adapting the Surface Pro to take advantages of its high performance, large screen, and ultra light weight – attributes that make the Surface an ideal work tool. For example Delta Airlines, is reportedly already using 11,000 Surface tablets in their operations.

So, when you’re flying to see your friends and family for the holidays this year, think about your pilot and what tools he may be using to get you there safely. It may just be a Surface Pro!

Happy Holiday Travels!

You may also like our posts on 10 Tips For Replacing Your Laptop With Surface Pro 3 and Surface Accessories Buying Guide 2014.

Joanna –

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