Delta Air Lines is handing out M1 iPad Pro units to pilots

The iPad is no stranger to flying the friendly skies. The iPad Pro especially, with the newest model –equipped with Apple’s custom M1 processor– taking flight as a necessary tool for JetBlue pilots. And now Delta Air Lines is getting in on the fun as well.

AT&T and Delta Air Lines today have announced that pilots wearing the company’s pin will be getting equipped with a brand new AT&T 5G-enabled iPad Pro with Apple silicon. The announcement says that all Delta pilot electronic flight bags (EFB), which is an important tool for pre-flight and task management, will be upgraded with the new, more powerful tablet.

This comes in light of Delta equipping flight attendants with the iPhone 12 earlier this year.

From today’s announcement:

The pilot’s role spans far beyond what happens at 30,000 ft. Flight data and aircraft load information are essential for every trip and delivered directly to each pilot’s EFB. Today, EFB apps on iPad are custom-built specifically to take advantage of the powerful hardware, helping pilots make efficient use of this information.

Innovative uses of sensors and other technology have made an increasing wealth of data available to pilots through their apps. Delta pilots depend on reliable, high-performing cellular connectivity when Wi-Fi is not available to download this critical data. The AT&T 5G network can help pilots download data at speeds comparable to Wi-Fi, even while in transit to the airport or at the gate.

The press release also goes into detail about the iPad Pro’s thin design, as well as other features like the camera system on the front of the device. AT&T says that equipping the pilots with the iPad Pro, which can connect to the wireless carrier’s 5G network, reduces the need for pilots to connect to public WiFi, which boosts security.

The pilots should be receiving the new iPad Pro soon.