Hilton Software is demonstrating the latest addition to the features of its moving-map app at its Sun ’n’ Fun exhibit (Booth D-081/082): integration of the Pebble smart watch with WingX Pro7. The watch connects to an iPad or iPhone running WingX Pro7 and displays navigation information and battery level indications and provides vibrating notifications. Pebble integration is available with the latest version of WingX Pro7, version 8.0, which also includes the ability to add SIDs, Stars and instrument approach procedures to flights plans and display user documents in a split screen. During Sun ’n’ Fun, Hilton Software is giving away a Pebble watch every day at 3 p.m. (Sunday at 12 p.m.). Winners must be present and also must currently subscribe to WingX Pro7.
The Pebble watch connects to the iPad running WingX Pro7 via Bluetooth, and WingX Pro7 for Pebble must also be installed on the watch. WingX for Pebble offers GPS speed, track, altitude and Waas flag; ETE, ETA, desired track and distance to the next waypoint and destination; and battery indicators for the watch and connected iPad.
The four vibrating warnings include timer expired, passing a fix in the flight-planned route, pre-selected altitude and descending below 1,000 feet above field elevation. The watch vibrates differently for each type of warning. For the altitude alert, the watch vibrates at plus or minus 300 feet from the set altitude. At 1,000 feet above the destination—useful as a prompt to run the pre-landing checklist—the watch vibrates five times. The timer expiration gives two vibrations. Passing a fix results in a single vibration.
“At first I was skeptical of Pebble’s use in aviation,” said Hilton Software founder Hilton Goldstein. “Now I find its potential to be incredible. Pebble’s e-paper screen is easy to read in bright sunlight, the timer is easy to use and the navigation information is simple to understand. But what I find most intriguing is the vibration notification system. Pebble’s vibration really gets your attention. For decades, designers have studied ways of alerting pilots, few of which have had much success. I believe that wearable devices provide a paradigm shift that may help us make measurable headway in reducing accident rates.”