File this one under “crazy things that Siri can do.” Apparently, thanks to the magic of Wolfram Alpha, Siri on the iPhone 4S is able to give you flight path trajectories. The real kicker is that Siri can use your iPhone’s GPS data to determine if there are planes currently flying about your area.
Now you have a new way to see if your friend is ready to get picked up at the airport!
Wolfram Alpha recently started incorporating flight data from the Federal Aviation Administration, and that means Siri can give you a flight’s speed, heading, and altitude with a five-minute delay from the real-time trajectory data. You are also provided with each flight’s plane type, slant distance, and even a comprehensive sky map. Unfortunately, the FAA’s flight data doesn’t include airline schedules.
If you say “Wolfram flights overheard” in Siri, you’ll get various flight details from different airlines in your area. Not only does Siri give you the altitude of each flight above your head, but Wolfram Alpha provides the exact angle of where the flight is located in the sky in relation to your iPhone. It’s all about the details.
As of right now, a flight must have at least one endpoint in the US to be recognized in Wolfram Alpha, so international flight tracking is limited.
This feature is also implemented in Wolfram Alpha’s new Travel Assistant App for iOS. The app lets you find all kinds of flight data and general tourism information, including flight arrival and delay times. Travel Assistant is available as a universal download for the iPhone and iPad in the App Store. It costs $4.99 and includes a ton of features.
[Thanks for the tip, Chris!]
Want to know about a great app? Try Duet Display, an awesome app that turns your iPhone or iPad into an extra display for your Mac or PC. Get it now in the App Store.