[APP REVIEW] Delta Wows with New iPad App

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We’re huge fans of Delta’s iPhone app, and they’ve now released an iPad app to complement the existing offerings. Delta claims they’ve invested $140 million in upgrading their mobile capabilities, and it totally shows. The new Fly Delta app for iPad is a masterpiece; part destination guide, part booking agent, the app is a study in nearly perfect usability.

So let’s begin.

Navigation

The app opens with the screen above, displaying the Delta logo. It’s unique in the sense that Delta has implemented a secure sign in feature, where the app remembers your Skymiles profile, and requires you to enter your PIN in order to “unlock” the application.

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After being logged in, you’re shown a Google Earth-esque map with certain destinations highlighted. A filter in the top right corner allows you to choose which destination types you’d like to see. Choices include luxury, eco-friendly, shopping, adventure, beaches, and romantic getaways. The layout is clean, simple, and likeable.

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The Destination Guide

Select a destination, and a customized cover screen appears. In the screenshots of Hong Kong and Frankfurt below, you can see that the photo quality is excellent. The front cover of the guide shows vital info such as the country’s flag, the city’s closest airport, population, current time, and average destination. It’s all very well laid out.

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Diving deeper into the guide, Delta’s iPad app includes helpful information about popular restaurants, nightlife, and other hotspots. Even tourist attractions are profiled in detail — everything from addresses, opening times, prices, and links to official websites. It’s all done tastefully and creatively; even some dedicated destination guides don’t have this much detail or a layout that’s this intuitive. Two thumbs to Delta for this.

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Booking a Flight

The flight booking flow is also simple to navigate. All of the options you’ve come to expect are there, and you just input your preferences. The flight selection page is basically a mobile version of what appears on Delta.com, making it comfortably familiar. Pricing out a ticket took us no time at all; if you were to continue forward, inputting passenger data is just as easy.

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Glass Bottom Jet

What in the world is Glass Bottom Jet? No, you won’t see a transparent floor on a future Delta flight, but, rather it’s a section of the app that allows you to view a map of what you’re currently flying over. The map has geographical landmarks marked with photos and Wikipedia articles to provide background on that cool mountain range below or the cornfields arranged in a zig-zag pattern. Glass Bottom Jet will work on any Delta Wi-Fi enabled flight, free of charge. A video demo of the service is included for those landlubbers who aren’t going to be up in the air in the near future.

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Other Things We Love

The fact that you can read issues of SKY magazine directly on the app is awesome. Flight status is equally cool with a live tracking interface and detailed data about flight, aircraft, and amenities.

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Verdict

Delta has hit a home run with their new iPad app. It’s worth noting that the iPhone app also received an update, now allowing for flight booking and other cool stuff. Delta has introduced so many awesome features and fantastic interfaces that it’s blatantly obvious how much effort went into making the app a great success.

Pros

  • Intuitive, easy to use interface
  • Tons of capability
  • Glass Bottom Jet and Destination Guide

Cons

  • App is a bit sluggish; some commands took multiple taps to execute

Final Thought

Delta’s iPad app is a must-have for any frequent Delta flier, and a necessary download for avgeeks everywhere.

[Photos: Taylor Michie / Screenshots from the Fly Delta iPad app]

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