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iPhone Apps and Accessories for the Savvy Airline Traveller Karishma Sundaram | , 1:35 p.m. Oct. 15, 2009 2009-10-15

Phones are of little use on flights, however that has not stopped people from making apps and accessories specially designed for in-flight entertainment and tools for managing travel efficiently. In this article, we look at a few designed especially for the iPhone. 


There are a number of online travel sites, which allow the user to book flights, tours, hotels and destinations to pretty much any corner of the globe. WhereTraveler.com is one of many, and now it has an iPhone app as well. The app covers all kinds of information bases, like travel information, currency converters and tourist spots. There is also a tip and bill splitting utility. The app offers a wide range of destinations, with write-ups by travel experts, and can therefore become a significantly helpful travelling companion. 

My Travel Log

This app was created by the University of Nottingham, and is an interesting one at that. While travelling, there are so many experiences that flood the mind. It would be nice to remember them at a later date, but travelling around while jotting things down in a notebook is cumbersome. This is where My Travel Log comes into the picture. It stores all sorts of information, like GPS coordinates and user-inputted information. At a later date, it serves admirably to refresh the memory and bring up a few anecdotes too. All the data is stored on the phone itself, therefore no personal information is transmitted over potentially unsecured networks. 

Griffin eXport In-Flight Video Cable

Griffin Technology has launched a new cable which allows a user to connect their iPhone to the in-flight entertainment system and view multimedia on the small screens embedded in the seats ahead, overriding the scheduled programming. There is a small port standard, introduced by Panasonic. The technology is available for licensing by in-flight entertainment systems manufacturers; however it is still new to the industry, so implementation is not widespread as yet. Nifty accessory though it undoubtedly is, there is the small consideration of whether or not the phone needs to be turned on. Perhaps it can just operate in flight mode. 

In-Flight Power Recharger

Great charging solutions are always welcome, especially for people always on the go. While car chargers have been around since time immemorial, aircraft chargers are not so easy to come by. The issue at hand was simple: what can be used as a power source? The audio jack.

Each airline seat usually has an audio jack on the side to plug in earphones for the in-flight entertainment system, whether radio or programming. The Power Recharger plugs into the audio jack, and creates charge based upon the tempo of the music playing. So ideally, for better charging, classic music is entirely out. The process takes quite a while, although instead of the audio jack, it possible to use the contraption with a couple of AAA batteries as well. 

Disclaimer: In no way does this article advocate the use of cell phones on board an aircraft. Mobile phone signals interfere with aircraft navigation systems, and can cause serious accidents.

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