What is the difference between AIR³ and a tablet with the same look one can find on internet/Alibaba?
AIR³ is an Android phone & tablet that has been designed to be a flight instrument.
AIR³ is not an “off the shelves” product similar to the products that one can see on internet/Alibaba. We have written specifications based on all the tests we have made and our long experience. AIR³ is produced through a large tablet manufacturer based on these specifications.
We have not developped our own shell for AIR³ 7.2. We used the same “shell” as other tablet manufacturers… so you can find different variants of this version from different manufacturers but the inside is different depending on the market that the manufacturer want to address. This shell was actually very good and strong, so it was a non sense to develop a new one. Sometimes people ask us: what are the exact differences with such tablet one can find on internet… well, it is difficult to answer as long as we produce AIR³ based on our specifications and we do not know the exact specifications of the other tablets.
As we faced “marketing difficulties” by using a shell that was available for other manufacturers (some competitors just copied AIR³), we decided to make our own shell for AIR³ 7.3. This has allowed us to design it without having to conceed anything on the features side. We have added physical buttons, on the front side, have integrated a pogopin USB interface, have placed the speaker on the front side instead of the back.
Most of similar tablets one can find on the shelves have no pressure sensor. AIR³ is equipped with a very powerful and accurate pressure sensor. A flight instrument should contain a good built in barometer.
Some other tablets have a pressure sensor. However, its is not because a tablet has a pressure sensor that it will work properly. We have tested many different barometer sensors. Some of them are definitely not good for our target or provide data that are not usable for our sport. Once you have selected the right barometer sensor, this is still not enough, you also have to tune it the right way and make sure it works great with XCTrack. We have made a lot of tests, so did the XCTrack team with AIR³, in order to make sure that XCTrack worked very well with the specificities of AIR³ modules.
Custom firmware and additional apps
AIR³ is much more than just a tablet + XCTrack Pro. Besides all the customisations that have been done, we have developed a special firmware and a special additional app (AIR³ Manager) to manage other features.
Check also our “recommended additional apps” page to see the different additional apps that have been customized to work great with AIR³.
We have also developed different bases to tilt the screen. Having the screen perpendicular to the look increases the readability. Read more about readability. Watch the video that shows how important it is to tilt the screen to optimize the readability.
AIR³ includes a perpetual license of XCTrack Pro.
The XCTrack team has been involved very early in the AIR³ project. The App has been optimized to take advantage of the way the modules are working. XCTrack has been customised to match the AIR³ specificities and is a Pro version. The Flarm/Fanet module of AIR³ 7.3+ is a specific feature developed by XCTrack for AIR³.
Indy, developer of XC Guide, is strongly involved in the AIR³ project. XC Guide takes advantage of the AIR² features. The Flarm/Fanet module of AIR³ 7.3+ is a specific feature developed by XC Guide for AIR³. AIR³ users can decide which flight computer to use: XCTrack, XC Guide or both (XCTrack in front and XC Guide in the background, providing XCTrack with useful info. Check more details about all the features provided by XC Guide to AIR³ here.