This started last year with the introduction of a VFR-only app for the US that is priced at /annually.
This year at Oshkosh they continued that trend and lowered the price of the Mobile Flight Deck IFR subscription, with full US coverage down to 9/annually.
The last one took me to Cincinnati, Oshkosh, Oklahoma City, and Austin. But it's not just the cost...it's the updating hassle. Jepp books up-to-date...laboriously filing thousands of update pages each year, 99% of which I'll never use. Jeppesen's "Q-Service" involves getting biweekly updates that are filed in a separate binder. Q-Service costs around 0 a year, and involves lugging around an absolutely ungodly number of binders..big heavy flight cases full of them. coverage from NOS is quite a bit less expensive than Jepp's Q-Service, but still far from cheap at 2 a year. There are two essential ingredients to the Air Chart System concept: three 11"-by-11" spiral-bound chart atlases (IFR, VFR, and Topo), plus a unique updater service that keeps the system up-to-date and legal. The IFR Atlas contains all the charts needed for enroute IFR navigation anywhere in the conterminous U. NOS charts use a second color (brown) for VFR-only airports and NDBs, while the Atlas shows these in blue and denotes VFR-only airports by means of a slash-line through the airport symbol.
The one before that hit Tucson, Dallas, Mobile, Miami, Raleigh-Durham, Washington DC, Boston, Cleveland, and Omaha. Every year I agonize over whether I should expand my Jeppesen Airway Manual subscription from its present west-coast-only coverage to full U. I find it a collossal pain to keep my lowly west coast coverage updated, and I simply can't face the burden of keeping a set of full. Every eighth update cycle, Jeppsen sends out a whole new set of charts, and you throw out all the old ones (enough to give your trashman a hernia and kill off a lot of innocent trees). NOS IFR charts are even easier than Q-service: every 56 days you get a whole new set, and you pitch out the old ones. For many years, I wrote off NOS charts because I hated their bound approach books, their tiny airport diagrams, and their hideously user-unfriendly organization (plates alphabetized by airport name rather than city name, SIDs and STARs in separate books, etc.) But over the years, NOS has gradually improved their plates and charts to eliminate these annoyances, and lately they have even offered plates in looseleaf format (although Jepp afficianados say they drill the holes on the wrong edge). Second, instead of being accordion-folded, each NOS enroute chart is divided into four sections, each occupying a pair of facing pages in the Atlas.
I would like to see a new course issued which focuses on digital formats. Second, many things they reference aren't the way it is anymore using electronic charts Good information, for what is still applicable, but way better if they updated it to the current electronic means of Jepp charts Returning to professional flying after a 16 year break and I needed a quick review/refresher course that cut straight to the subject matter. I downloaded the videos so I could see them offline.
Martha & John have been there since I started my flying in the late 80's with their expert yet tongue in cheek approach that is entertaining as much as is it highly informative... It worked great but the videos were difficult to download.
Mike Busch is editor-in-chief of AVweb, a member of the technical staff at Cessna Pilots Association, and in a prior lifetime was a contributing editor for The Aviation Consumer and IFR Magazine. I've long been aware that there's a third alternative to Jeppesen and NOS... But to be perfectly honest with you, I've never taken Keefe's charts seriously until recently. I guess those ads appeal to some pilots, because thousands of them subscribe to Air Chart Systems. Somehow I figured that if Howie's charts looked anything at all like Howie's ads, I wasn't much interested.
A 6,000-hour commercial pilot and CFI with airplane, instrument and multiengine ratings, Mike has been flying for 36 years and an aircraft owner for 33. It's because of those, umm, unusual-looking advertisements that have appeared for decades in just about every major aviation magazine. Those stark-looking black-and-white ones that have about 100,000 words of ad copy set in six point type, and no graphics or artwork except for tiny thumbnail photographs of Bob Hoover, Burt Rutan, Bobby Allison, Najeeb Halaby, Julie Clark, and other illustrious members of the "Air Chart Systems Advisory Staff." Plus that tiny little order form crammed in the corner that looks like it would take a high-powered magnifier plus a Ph. Well, last year I had the opportunity to get my hands on a set of Air Chart Systems atlases, take a close look at them, and fly with them.
From the beginning, we've collected pilot feedback and worked diligently to improve the manual's format and design.With Airway Manual (Electronic Text) you can search the text.With Jepp View all content, including charts is searchable.Each volume, created for pilots who are familiar with United States IFR rules, presents a review of the meaning of the symbols used on the charts—plus dozens of practical tips on how you can use the charts to their fullest advantage. And even current IFR pilots may not be familiar with some of the new concepts you'll find in the volume on Approaches.Included in Enroute, Departures and Arrivals are how Jeppesen depicts the alphabet soup of IFR altitudes—MEAs, etc. The course is an excellent review of the Jeppesen chart format.There is no way Microsoft could keep them current without very frequent and costly upgrades to the software.