Flight Tracking -- source of data

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by frjohnson, Aug 19, 2009.

  1. frjohnson macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2009
    Before buying an iPhone flight-tracking app, I thought I should check out where the top apps get their flight data and learn which source has the most accurate data.

    At their web site ( http://www.mobiata.com/flighttrack ), I learned that the leading app, FlightTrack, gets data from FlightStats. I googled FlightStats and found 1,570,000 hits, with lots of praise for its data.

    Flight Tracker ( http://www.splashdata.com/splashtravel/flights/ ) is cheaper that FlightTrack, but their web site does not give their data source, so I wrote to their support email address. They responded:

    > Our Flight Tracker data comes from a 3rd party flight data
    > service, know as Custom Online Services.

    I googled "Custom Online Services" and found nothing! So, I wrote Flight Tracker again and inquired further. Their response:

    > It's a private 3rd party service. It's not for public
    > access - just developer services.

    What do you think: Am I gullible to thing that "Custom Online Services" is "private" and "not for public access" and is thus listed nowhere on the web? Or is "Custom Online Services" simply fictitious?

    P.S. Sure, I could just buy both apps, but am now curious about this possible subterfuge. Or am I just being suspicious?
  2. alent1234 macrumors 603

    Jun 19, 2009
    check out Travelocity

    it's free and offers flight stats
  3. iFerd macrumors 6502a

    Jul 20, 2007
    I haven't tested it recently, but in its earlier days I found Flight Tracker to be unreliable in reporting flight status. FlightTrack (I have the Pro version that talks to TripIt) has always been more accurate in my hands.
  4. mark34 macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    Flight Update!! It is perhaps the best app I have on my phone. It isn't the best for flight shopping but it is superb for managing your itinerary, checking status, find alternates, etc...

    I admit that I have not tried the others you are talking about, but I have every so often tried various apps and software and have never been too thrilled.
  5. VentureBro macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2009
  6. adster macrumors regular

    Aug 7, 2008
    I use Flight Update Pro. I love the TripIt integration and I love that it shows the current location of the flight on Google Maps. It also has a bunch of neat little features that any of the other apps don't have:

    1) View the seating layout of your assigned plane. It will also show you which are are the best / worst seats to sit in on your particular flight. SeatGuru.com is where that data comes from.
    2) The app allows you to find another flight easily if yours is canceled for some reason. It searches all carriers to find a flight or flights to get you to your destination closest to the time of your original flight.
    3) All above features are included in the regular version of Flight Update. The only difference between that and Flight Update Pro is that Pro has TripIt integration. The cool thing is that if you buy the regular add and want to ass TripIt integration later, you can upgrade to the Pro version via in-app purchasing and just pay the difference.

    [app]Flight Update Pro[/app]
  7. frjohnson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2009
    "Custom Online Services"

    Well, spending a few bucks is not exactly the biggest decision of my life, but it seems that "Custom Online Services" that Flight Tracker claims to use as their source of flight data is nothing but fiction. I'm not happy with that.

    So, FlightTrack ( http://www.mobiata.com/flighttrack ) here I come! They are near the top of travel, so it seems like a fast safe bet. I'll be flying several times over the next few weeks, so I'll find out soon!
  8. iFerd macrumors 6502a

    Jul 20, 2007
    If you are not familiar with TripIt, go to their web site and see if it appeals to you before you decide. Their services are free, and its a cinch to deal with itineraries on you iPhone if you pick one that speaks TripIt. TripIt also has its own free iPhone app, but it doesn't do real time tracking.

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