AOPA gets out of EFB market

Over the past several years, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) developed its digital flight planning tools into a suite of products that put flight planning capability, airport directory information and aviation weather in pilots’ hands.  AOPA partnered with Seattle Avionics to create FlyQ EFB, an electronic flight bag (EFB) iPad application, and FlyQ Pocket, a smartphone application.

Shortly after joining AOPA last fall, President Mark Baker began a review of AOPA’s member benefits and products, which included an assessment of where members believe AOPA should spend resources in regards to flight planning benefits.

As a result, AOPA has decided to exit the EFB market, and will develop a distinct smartphone application focusing on content and functions driven by member needs.  The new smartphone application will remain a free member benefit, AOPA officials said.

Officials noted that AOPA and Seattle Avionics are working to ensure FlyQ EFB and FlyQ Pocket subscribers and users will experience a smooth transition.

“We are excited about continuing these two great products and have appreciated our partnership with AOPA.  We strongly believe that pilots will benefit from the new directions we’ll take the apps,” said Steve Podradchik, CEO of Seattle Avionics.

AOPA will transfer all responsibility for FlyQ EFB to Seattle Avionics in September 2014, at which time Seattle Avionics will also undertake all marketing, customer support and further development of the app.

FlyQ Pocket will be offered solely by Seattle Avionics after the AOPA/Seattle Avionics contract ends in February 2015.

The only change FlyQ EFB subscribers and FlyQ Pocket users should notice is that AOPA’s logo and name will no longer be coupled with either product, AOPA officials said.

AOPA’s replacement smartphone application will be available for members in 2015.

About General Aviation News Staff

Comments

  1. Michael Gallagher says:

    The early days of the FlyQ release were of a very unstable product, especially the web version. Technical support was nonexistent and when I did get a reply, it was a couple of months later with a “we’re too busy” form reply. To me it tarnished the AOPA image which was already lagging. A truly commercial venture would have never have released a product without more testing.

  2. AOPA never should have gotten into a business that forms a competitive threat to its corporate sponsors.

    The old saw “just because you can, dosen’t mean you should” seems appropriate here.

  3. AOPA is supposed to be a voice and lobbying group for the GA community. When they start competing with goods and services, they no longer are in that position, but instead, competitor.

  4. A most welcome announcement. I never thought AOPA should have been in that business anyway. Maybe Baker will actually turn things around.

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