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7/16/2012 2:27:34 PM ET to hc130radio and D, while I agree that iPads are not the 'best' solution, unfortunately they are the only tablet that is FAA-approved for in-flight use. other tablet manufacturers need to get that designation before they can compete - too bad Apple has already wrapped up the market. what I want to know is with the total cost of outfitting all squadrons with tablets, did this go through the appropriate bidding process?
7/12/2012 10:12:43 PM ET Just found out a few weeks ago our Tech Orders are going to be replaced with Ipads within the next year. the order for them has already been placed. So yes Crew Chiefs and Specialists will also be rockin the Ipad on the flightline. This will not end well for those poor poor Ipads.
7/12/2012 12:40:12 PM ET Weight saved yes money saved... not so much. If they were really concerned about cost savings then our Senior Leaders would have chosen a device other Apple. Instead their teenage hearts are aflutter for something made in China in horrible working conditions.
7/12/2012 10:19:01 AM ET If we're really wanting to cut costs - how about buying e-readers NOOK etc to cut that IPad cost in half since we're talking about replacing paper manuals with tablets.
7/12/2012 9:46:03 AM ET @ MX chick. There is no way an iPad would survive a week in the hands of a crew chief or specialist on the flight line. Between the dropping potential to the fluids it gets exposed to it would die a horrible death. I used the toughbooks when they first came out. They are tough but not indestructable. We killed at least 3 in the 2 years that I used them.
Former MX, San Antonio
7/12/2012 9:33:42 AM ET I have seen the logistics behind these iPads. We're not going to have any apps to download no music app to download music and internet connection is still up in the air whether it will be approved or not. Bottom line is that the iPad's sole purpose is to replace paper T.O.'s and everything else we need to carry in an electronic format. So if you think we will have all the benefits of a REAL iPad keep dreaming. They are trying to develop apps for running the form F and other crew members programs. No one is better than the other person. Get out of the we are better than thou mentality. If you don't like it x-train or get out of the air force and see what the real world is like and how cushy we have it as military members. Yes we serve in rough places and are away from our family's. But things are a lot harder in this economy. So good luck with your decision.
7/12/2012 9:05:20 AM ET @MSgt Potvin a base iPad will run you and I 399. I'd really be surprised if an Aircrew member has over 16GB of manuals or would need 3G connectivity. I don't really understand why the Air Force always loves to buy the most proprietary electronic devices available. iPads are well know for their lack of USB Ports and memory upgrade slots. There are many Android alternatives that are much less restrictive and provide more flexibility than the iPad.
Gary S, Fairview Heights IL
7/12/2012 7:42:25 AM ET To Helo Flyer how does it feel to perpetuate a stereotype so poorly You would be lucky to launder the flight suit of Captain Lawrence P. Wilson of Cannon AFB. Come back again when you're ready for the big leagues.
7/12/2012 2:56:25 AM ET Maintainers have the same issues--carrying bulky TOs to their job site. There's no reason maintainers shouldn't benefit from the same technology and cost savings result as everyone else. Oh and by the way some shops at Kadena are still using paper TOs.
mx chick, Kadena AB Japan
7/12/2012 1:41:35 AM ET Maintainers do not have to worry about weight limits while they work on the ground aircrew do.@Hello Flyer NellisIf your benefits are so few for the dangerous work you do why don't you retrain You are not forced to be a flyer.
D.R., Laughin AFB
7/11/2012 7:08:09 PM ET Its not that fliers get treated better I for one am very unsure about about the IPAD pubs. But a tough book is not feasible with its bulky size and limited battery life. A similar computer is currently used for some inflight duties by certain crew positions and must remain plugged into the acft at all times. Ipads do have longer battery life and every crewmember can have one. Its not like we are getting them to keep they are for official use only. As for flyers always having it better seriously go see what being one entails I left mx to do this because I love flying but life has not gotten any easier the fact that people think we are treated so great and get everything we want is annoying see how the other half lives before you pass judgement.
7/11/2012 6:01:24 PM ET To Little Rock Amn life isn't fair. You get cool toys if you pay the price to get them. By price I mean the work it takes. If you aren't happy with what you are doing then do something else. Don't be jealous. And by the way we don't get Ipads on helos. They'd never stand up to the heat cold rain snow bullets and blood of the HH-60G world. Mahalo.
Rescue FE, Nellis
7/11/2012 2:06:02 PM ET To Little Rock and MSgt Potvin, if you believe that flyers get treated better, here's an idea: RETRAIN. Stop complaining. Oh and by the way, my few benfits do not out way the risk I take flying in afghanistan or iraq while you are safe behind the wire.
Helo Flyer, Nellis
7/11/2012 11:33:35 AM ET Panasonic Toughbooks cost $2000-$3000 retail depending on the model, so the iPad is a significant savings to the military.
7/11/2012 9:58:47 AM ET To Little Rock Amn, if you do the math they detailed in the article, this equals out to roughly $533 dollars per iPad. That is WAY cheaper than an iPad that you or I could go buy in the store and is also way cheaper than a Toughbook. I usually agree that the fliers get better things than maintainers or other career fields, but in this case there's a reason for it. It was cheaper and will provide a lot of cost savings to the Air Forc ein the long run.
MSgt Brian Potvin, Langley AFB VA
7/10/2012 9:19:46 PM ET This figures that the Aircrew would get IPad 2's. What is wrong with the toughbook that the maintainer MUST use now that the AF is going away from paper tech data. You would figure in the conservative time in the defense department the AF would have bought the best deal for both the maintainers and aircrew. But once again the people who wear zipper suits get the best and the real maintainers get the hand me down items.