NBAA Convention News

New WSI service displays wx data on cellphones

 - October 5, 2008, 4:14 AM

WSI yesterday introduced Pilotbrief Mobile, which provides the company’s aviation weather and hazard information in a format compatible with mobile devices such as the BlackBerry, Treo and iPhone. Costing $9.95 per month, the service does not require installation of an application and is compatible with the Internet browsers found on most mobile phones.

“With Pilotbrief Mobile, we have extended the convenience and capabilities of Pilotbrief Online beyond the briefing room to the flight line,” said Paul Hathaway, director of product management. “Pilots who have used Pilotbrief Pro or Pilotbrief Online to plan their flight can quickly check their route for changing weather conditions on their mobile phones while waiting for passengers to arrive. Pilotbrief Mobile means that wherever you are, you can get the aviation-quality weather you rely on.”

Pilotbrief Mobile features a “rich graphical user interface and access to the majority of graphical and textual products found on Pilotbrief Online,” as well as a “snapshot” home-page screen that displays the decoded Metar and local NOWrad for a pilot-defined area.

WSI is demonstrating Pilotbrief Mobile at Booth No. 4476 and is making a complimentary trial subscription available to NBAA attendees during the convention.
In other news, the company has inked a partnership with Avidyne to deliver global datalink weather content for the Lincoln, Mass.-based avionics manufacturer’s MLX770 service, which uses the Iridium satellite network. Global Metars, TAFs, lightning and winds- and temperature-aloft data will be accessible, in addition to enhanced weather radar coverage that now includes Europe and Australia. Avidyne’s MLX770 service is compatible with both Avidyne multifunction displays and the WSI InFlight Display Client for electronic flight bags.
“Through this partnership with Avidyne, international aircraft operators can now enjoy the safety and operational benefits of WSI aviation weather that was previously available only in North America,” said Mark Miller, vice president and general manager of WSI’s aviation business. The MLX770 service is on display at WSI’s booth.
WSI yesterday also announced a partnership that will integrate Ac-U-Kwik’s global airport and FBO data into WSI’s array of proactive operations management products. Ac-U-Kwik (Booth No. 1662) maintains a worldwide database of 8,000 airports that have hard runways of more than 3,000 feet in length, including runway dimensions, approaches and contact information. Each airport has detailed listings for FBOs, handlers, fuel suppliers, ground transportation and catering. This data will now be incorporated in WSI preflight briefing tools to provide pilots and dispatchers with an analysis of weather, hazards, facilities and services information for the route of flight and destination.
TAC Air (Booth No. 1025) has renewed its contract with WSI to provide Pilotbrief weather briefing systems at its 12 FBO locations.
The lightning data layer in the Pilotbrief online interactive map now taps the Global Lightning Network (GLN), a source of “high-quality real-time lightning detection data for locations throughout the world.”
The GLN is composed of advanced lightning-strike detection sensors strategically located at international hosting partner sites. “Data from the GLN has the timeliness, coverage and delivery to support critical…requirements in key deployment areas, including North and South America, Southeast Asia/Australia and Europe,” the company said.
Headquartered in Andover, Mass., WSI is owned by The Weather Channel.    –N.M.