LONDON, 25 Sept. 2013. Boeing (NYSE:BA), in an effort to make routine maintenance and diagnosing aircraft issues faster and easier for airline technicians, has launched a suite of new mobile applications for the Apple iPad.
With Boeing’s new apps, technicians gain immediate access to manuals, part numbers, and other critical information to resolve maintenance issues plane-side and collaborate with co-workers remotely. In turn, airlines can enhance real-time regulatory compliance, reduce flight delays, and reduce operational costs, says a company spokesperson.
Boeing officials are demonstrating the MRO apps at MRO Europe.
Boeing worked with several airlines for more than a year on the prototype, incorporating their input to optimize the user interface and maximize utility for line mechanics. Technicians will have instant access to critical information, including the maintenance history of an aircraft, when they need it most. The application suite includes Toolbox Mobile Library, Toolbox Mobile Parts, and Maintenance Turn Time.
"Mobile technology is an important aspect of our digital airline strategy, which is to harness the power of information, technology and analytics to create insights that give our customers the Boeing Edge: a competitive advantage in the marketplace," says John Maggiore, director of Fleet and Maintenance Solutions, Boeing Digital Aviation. "Data-driven optimization across flight operations, airspace and maintenance operations is saving aircraft operators millions of dollars in operating costs today. This is an exciting new chapter of that journey."
Features of the new maintenance apps include:
- A Toolbox Mobile Library, which will provide technicians access to maintenance documents for instant reference and use, wherever and whenever needed.
- Hyperlinks between multiple manuals and airline-created content that will expedite access to critical documents so that users can easily search for documents and information about parts and fault histories.
- A Toolbox Mobile Parts app which enables technicians to instantly retrieve information about part availability, including the airline's most current inventory information.
- Maintenance Turn Time, which gives technicians a secure connection to collaborate with their colleagues when troubleshooting a maintenance issue. A technician can take a photo of a damaged part, upload it for others to see and annotate and then share information about maintenance issues with their peers in real time. Maintenance Turn Time is available for the iPad, iPhone and a web browser.
- The ability to update reference manuals with one tap on the iPad screen.
Alaska Airlines technicians estimate that using the apps on a 0.69-pound iPad mini to access critical information will save 4,000 pieces of paper a day.
"We are very excited about the launch of these new products," Maggiore says. "They are a great addition to the Boeing portfolio and will deliver even more value to our customers when used in conjunction with capabilities such as Electronic Logbook, Airplane Health Management, and Maintenance Performance Toolbox."