American Airlines said on Wednesday that it had identified the issue that caused flight crews’ iPads to crash, and delayed around 70 planes on Tuesday. The airlines blamed the problem on mismanaged third-party software, not the iPad devices themselves.
According to an American Airlines representative, an updated runway map for Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport pushed out to iPad-based electronic flight bags conflicted with a previous version, reports Re/code. Crew who downloaded and accessed that specific map experienced a glitch that caused their iPads to crash.
“That’s why it was not system-wide or a fleet type problem,” said Casey Norton, an American Airlines spokesman. “It’s when the pilot accessed a particular map.”
American uses the Jeppesen Mobile Terminal Chart app for its EFB backbone, approved for gate-to-gate use by the Federal Aviation Administration.
While the company waits for a fix, pilots have been instructed to view the updated runway map in another app, use a paper version, or to delete and re-install the Jeppesen app on their iPads.
American Airlines was the first airline to begin allowing its flight crews to use the iPad on the flight deck, receiving FAA approval back in 2011. In 2013, the airline began giving its pilots Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) containing the iPads, the first major commercial airline to make the move.