FAA clears Surface for takeoff in US cockpits

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Begun, the airline tablet wars have? Microsoft's Surface 2 has just joined the iPad on the FAA's list of approved pilot EFBs (Electronic Flight Bags) for all phases of flight. That follows Delta's recent announcement that it would deploy 11,000 of Redmond's hybrid tablets in its cockpits instead of the iPad, which it also considered. Apple's tablet is already used by American Airlines and others, but Delta said it preferred the readability, productivity apps and other features of the Surface 2. Pilots will now be able to switch from heavy paper charts and books, which will supposedly save millions in fuel costs once the transition is complete in 2015. It also finally puts the pilots on parity with their passengers, as the airline was one of the first on board with the expanded use of personal electronics.

Update: The Surface 2 has been approved by the FAA, not the Surface Pro 2. We've revised the post to reflect that.

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