Microsoft Surface 2 tablets will soon be used by 11,000 Delta Airlines pilots as the airline eliminates pilots' traditional paper-based flight kits.
Delta made the announcement Monday
and said the tablets will contain navigational charts and aircraft operating and reference manuals that pilots previously had to lug around in bags that weighed as much as 35 pounds.
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The Surface 2 will be given to pilots flying the Boeing 757 and Boeing 767 fleets later this year. Delta announced cockpits will go completely paperless by the end of 2014.
"Delta's electronic flight bag running on Surface 2 continues the technological strides Delta has been making to give our crews the best tools to keep them flying safely and efficiently," Capt. Steve Dickson, Delta's senior vice president of flight operations, said in the announcement.
"This intuitive device puts key information at our pilots' fingertips right when they need it. By eliminating paper, we'll reduce clutter and minimize time spent looking for flight information, allowing our pilots the opportunity to develop greater situational awareness in the air and on the ground," Dickson added.
The Surface has struggled to catch on in the competetive tablet market.
"This is the first good news for the Surface in what has been an otherwise poor first year on the market," Mashable wrote on Tuesday.
"The Microsoft Surface product has been a relative failure for the Windows maker, leading it to write down $900 million in losses in the last fiscal year and slash prices in half to attract customers, which has yet to happen. Analyst estimates point to 1.5 million sales of the Surface in its first eight months, as opposed to 57 million iPad sales during the same period."
Zach Epstein, of BGR.com
, said the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 are huge improvements from the original product. The new devices will give Microsoft a second shot at breaking into the tablet market.
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