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What to choose - SkyDemon, Jeppesen FD, JeppView, Garmin Pilot

I’m new to the forum, and it seems to be a lot of expirenced and competent pilots here :-)

So today I’m flying VFR, mostly between Sweden (where I live) and Germany (I love to fly there :-) ).
Right now I spend a lot of time to finish my CBIR and I hope to get the Instrument Rating in March.
I actually don’t fly that much (about 25 hours/year due to my family situation), but I hope it will be better :-)

Today I fly with SkyDemon with the DFS charts. But I’m looking in some chart solution for IFR. And Jeppesen is an alternative. The price is EUR661 JEPP FD IFR+VFR, BUT it is only an single installation.
I also looked at the Garmin Pilot app, which can be combined with Jeppesen charts.

So my questions are:
Which is the best total solution (for the money), if I fly both IFR and VFR?
Do you recommend Jeppesen FD? (But what do you have as a backup, when it’s just a single installation?)

(Sorry for my bad english, it could be better I know :-) )

Johan M

I haven’t studied all solutions, but I think If I had to have only one system, I’d go for Garmin Pilot. I don’t pay for Jeppesen, but it has all AIP charts georeferenced so that works for me.

If I was to go for one system then on balance, Garmin Pilot with an additional sub for the Jeppesen single install IFR. Backup – print the approach charts.

EHLE / Lelystad, Netherlands, Netherlands

The problem is… you can’t really print from the Ipad product. You can print one page at a time, which is especially useless if you want to print off plates for a range of alternates.

Very similar issues here

More here on Ipad printing.

The other problem is that the PC app (Jeppview), from which printing to PDF is dead easy, cannot be bought single-install so the only option is to share it with 3 others.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

For enroute IFR, Skydemon is great – personally I find it much better than Jepp. For terminal nav though, I agree that the Jepp charts are far better than the alternatives.

Personally, I fly IFR with Jeppesen on the iPad for terminal charts and mostly the IFR panel GPS for enroute nav (referring to skydemon for terrain) and skydemon with all the AIP charts on a backup device (I use a cheap android tablet as a backup).

Garmin Pilot is pretty good, and does seem to be rapidly improving. Last time I checked they didn’t have proper graphical notams but were otherwise nearly as good as Skydemon.


Garmin Pilot.

If you want a single app subscription for all types of flight, it is by far the best option (excluding ForeFlight in the US).

It is almost certainly going to “win” and become the most adopted app long term, given Garmin’s resources and the integration with their panel mount products.

And the software engineering quality is way ahead of SkyDemon and Jepp.

Last Edited by at 06 Jan 21:56

ortac wrote:

And the software engineering quality is way ahead of SkyDemon and Jepp.

How can you say that? Sky Demon appears to me to be one of the best written software I have used. I mean, you probably can find something you don’t like about Sky Demon, but software engineering quality is not one of them.

Also, Garmin Pilot do not have VFR charts for Scandinavia (except Denmark), making it useless for VFR in Scandinavia.

Last Edited by LeSving at 07 Jan 08:54

The rendering performing is very poor (like-for-like hardware as GP).

The user interface is a mess with buttons along the top, tabs on the right, the funny round SkyDemon icon, etc. No consistency or clear UI paradigm.

The download manager is poorly implemented.

The Cloud/Local implementation is poorly thought out.

The UI implementation is too susceptible to unwanted behaviour due to unintended screen touches. I see SkyDemon users saying “ahh, didn’t mean to do that” quite often.

The flight plan / PLOG appears to be a verbatim copy of a paper PLOG form, rather than a “software first” design. GP flight plan screen is exactly as per a proper GTN/G1000/“FMS” design.

The concept of having to press “Go Flying” is nonsense. Why do I have to tell the software when I am flying?! I don’t have to do this on a GTN, or GP, or tell my TomTom when I’m driving.

In some places, lack of asynchronous implementation which effects app responsiveness.

Complete lack of native or “idiomatic” UI concepts for iOS or Android. Admittedly GP does diverge from iOS standards too.

Poor typography.

I could go on…

Admittedly haven’t used it for a year, so this is from memory, but in my business we would not release iOS/Android software built like this.

I wonder how many people write these products and what their background is?

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

ortac wrote:

The concept of having to press “Go Flying” is nonsense. Why do I have to tell the software when I am flying?! I don’t have to do this on a GTN, or GP, or tell my TomTom when I’m driving.

You don’t have to press “Go Flying”, it does this automatically when you start flying. As with the other things, I’m not sure what you mean. Download manager poorly implemented?

Anyway, Johan wanted VFR and IFR for Sweden and Germany. Garmin Pilot has no VFR maps for Sweden, so it is not usable there. It is no option as far as VFR is concerned.

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