Bendix/King, the Albuquerque-based Honeywell division which builds avionics for light aircraft and helicopters, has set out a five-point plan to retrieve market share it has lost to Garmin and other providers in the sector.

As part of that effort, at AirVenture Bendix/King revealed its first iPad application - in development and called myWingMan, - as well as a newly available Bluetooth-enabled audio panel.

"We're back, and we're back to stay," says Roger Jollis, vice-president of marketing for Bendix/King. The five focus areas include new products, reliability, cost effectiveness, intuitiveness of products and better customer service.

"We are going to listen to pilots; we are hiring pilots; pilots are on our engineering teams and product marketing team," says Jollis. "At one point in time, Bendix/King was number one in this industry - we still have a lot of that DNA in our organisation."

The company's iPad app, expected to be completed this year, offers pre-flight through post-flight planning and execution aids for the pilot, including synthetic vision.

If the unit is connected to an attitude and heading reference system, the synthetic scene is egocentric and shows aircraft attitude. But with GPS alone, the view is an exocentric - or wingman view with no attitude information.

"The key thing that makes the iPad so successful is that when it came out, it had only one button [the power button]," says Jollis, adding that Bendix/King used that as a model and "created an entirely flat application".

On the broader field of modern avionics, Jollis says: "It should be easy for pilots to bring information in, internalise and take action on it - myWingMan and the KMA30 [audio panel] are examples."

Jollis says the iPad will replace other tablet devices, including Bendix/King's AV8OR family of products, which Jollis says are no longer being produced, although inventory remains.

Source: Flight International