Loss of Flight Planner and "evolving technology"
Votes
Joined 03/02/2020 - 1 Posts
Open
Since I am a user of the desktop flight planner, I am disappointed with the decommissioning. My first thought was "why not just get another map engine". I like the AOPA desktop planner because it is the only one I have used that gives you the wind optimization table like that - though sometimes the results were a little odd with respect to TAS and total fuel as you climb.

But to me, a more serious problem is this issue of the "evolving technology" that made the desktop planner obsolete. Translated, what that REALLY means is that, "everyone just uses ForeFlight now". That's all well and good - I don't HAVE to have a desktop version. However, I am not an Apple fan (gasp!!), I don't use ipads, and I don't use ForeFlight. So, where is my non-Apple alternative? I have tried several, and in particular I have AOPA-Go on my phone. The problems is that it sucks. All the non-Floreflight portable flight planning Aps that I have tried suck. AOPA-Go in particular is clunky, cumbersome, slow, and riddled with bugs and weirdness.

The way to replace the desktop planner is just to give us an Android package as good and full featured as ForeFlight - or at least give us all the functions of the desktop planner in a good, fast, usable Ap. Because that's what ForeFlight is.
 
52 Replies
Votes
Joined 03/02/2020 - 4 Posts
I agree that when AOPA took an Apple only track years ago, they lost me because I will not buy an iPad just for AOPA when I work with multiple Android tablets for my business and personal use. The desktop planner is easy to use on a real PC with keyboard and monitor compared to typing or touching a smaller screen without a keyboard and mouse. If Garmin Pilot and FlightPlanGo can work very well on Android, don't tell me Apple is the only platform. Android has 87% market share compared to Apple's 13%, so why ignore the larger market. 
Votes
Joined 03/02/2020 - 1 Posts
I agree completely with this. I regularly used the desktop flight planner and it was my favorite flight planning system. I too enjoyed the wind optimization table and it did a great job when I flew across half the US to Oshkosh last year.

I don't use Apple products and don't use Foreflight so I guess I'll be using FltPlan Go for the time being.

AOPA is very quickly losing a lot of the features I care about when it comes to my membership. The flight planning system was one of the big ones that I greatly enjoyed.
Votes
Joined 03/02/2020 - 1 Posts
I agree as well.  I regularly use Flight Planner for all my flight planning and flight plan filing.  The tabbed weather briefings are excellent and bring organization to much information.  I also agree with previous comments about the Optimize button to pick an optimal altitude, saves a lot of time searching for information and changing values.  AOPA Go is hard to use efficiently and only use to update a route saved via Flight Planner or if not PC is available.  The ability to use a real keyboard and mouse is a big feature.  I've tried other online and table planners (no charge) but always have come back to Flight Planner.  It's been a great membership benefit.
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Joined 03/02/2020 - 1 Posts
Just here to agree with the above.  Apple is twice the cost for half the capability. I guess I will use other tools now.  One less thing my AOPA membership provides.
Votes
Joined 01/28/2020 - 88 Posts
Hi everyone. Thank you all for taking the time to give us honest feedback and share your thoughts. We don’t take your concerns lightly and are working with several companies in the industry to provide a replacement option(s) for those who wish to continue to utilize a desktop Flight Planning application. While we didn’t have the option to keep the current Flight Planner going, we do understand the value of having a desktop tool. We are also exploring opportunities for those who wish to use an EFB (Electronic Flight Bag) to have this option from our industry partners at the best price possible. We will communicate all details as soon as they become available. Thank you for being valued members and AOPA pilots.
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Joined 03/02/2020 - 4 Posts
Thank you for the response, and not taking the attitude we got years ago when we were told the future was Apple and that's all that would be supported going forward. The market has shown that Apple is not the only future and telling people that is the only platform to be supported did not make us feel that AOPA was supporting pilots but was looking for an easy way out at the time and supporting vendors who happened to support Apple.
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Joined 03/04/2020 - 1 Posts
I agree with all of this.  I also have not been drinking the iKool-Aid.  Android does more for less.  Avare (mentioned elsewhere) is also a great product for ADSB-In. 
Now, Leidos has made some great strides recently, and their wx reporting is fantastic.  BUT!  I still use AOPA Flight Planner to plan my route, and to file.  I feel it is more accurate and more convenient. 
Just my two cents.....
Votes
Joined 03/04/2020 - 2 Posts
It's a real bummer that this benefit is going away. I found it a great benefit to the AOPA community, and I used it in my flight planning on my desktop along with IFlyGPS. In my opinion this detracts from the value of the membership.
Please find a worthy replacement very soon!
Votes
Joined 03/04/2020 - 1 Posts
Echos my sentiments exactly. The desktop planner was my first stop for basic VFR planning before a flight. I consider it one of the most valuable benefits of AOPA membership.

I use Avare on an Android tablet with an external GPS/ADS-B receiver in flight and I'm quite happy with it.

Without a viable non-Apple replacement I'll have to seriously consider how much value my membership provides next renewal. 
Votes
Joined 09/25/2017 - 3 Posts
https://www.iflygps.com/   works well.  Maybe they can provide an online application via AOPA.

Dave Beans
KHGR