Gulf Air has announced the adoption of iPad-based electronic flight bags. The Kingdom of Bahrain’s flagship air carrier announced last week that it was kicking off the program in cooperation with local telecommunications provider VIVA Bahrain.
AppleInsider reports that the news carrier’s plan to roll out its iPad EFB program was revealed in a meeting on Sunday that covered Gulf Air’s Information and Communication Technology initiatives. In all, 355 iPads will be purchased and distributed throughout the airline’s fleet.
“This is an essential component of our ongoing commitment to all new technology that provides integrated solutions for managing information in the air and on the ground,” said Gulf Air’s Acting CEO Maher Salman Al Musallam.
Gulf Air follows the lead of other airlines, such as American Airlines, which now has more than 8,000 iPads issued to replace the heavy flight bags traditionally carried by the flight crew.
The U.S. Air Force is also using iPad EFBs to reduce fuel costs. The switch to electronic flight bags will likely save the Air Force’s cargo unit approximately $750,000 in fuel and $5 million in printing costs per year. The Air Force plans to deploy 18,000 iPads over the next ten years.