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Thursday, 15th November 2007

New for Facebook: FlightStats Real Time Information and Alerts

We use three services to track (near real-time) flights to and from the U.S., Canada, and in some cases in many other countries. Like all reference sources each has it's strenghts and weaknesses so that's why it's useful to know what all three offer.

1) FlightAware
Ability to see all fleets in the air, sort by aircraft type, etc. Tail number tracking. 40 days worth of historic data free for registered users (registration is free).

2) FlightExplorer
Good maps including a layer for maps that shows turbulence. Ability with two clicks to track flight using SkylineGlobe's Digital Globe in 3D.

3) FlightStats
Mobile version at http://mobile.flightstats.com/, ability to combine codeshare flights, airports delay info, etc. Very strong (and getting stronger) in non-US/Canadian coverage. Registered users (free) get extra data.

TODAY, we've learn that FlightStats now has a Facebook application that can be accessed at http://facebook.flightstats.com.

From the announcement:

The interactive Flight Tracker application refreshes automatically as the flight progresses showing the flight's progress over a Google (tm) map. Companion screens show weather information in both the arrival and departure cities and alert users to any airport delays that might affect the monitored flight. Flight information displayed below the map includes the on-time arrival performance rating for the monitored flight, its scheduled and actual departure time, and its estimated arrival time.

Flight Tracker for FaceBook lets a user set up any number of flight status alerts for specific flight arrivals and departures, each with its own notification options. For any given flight alert, a user can select to have messages:
- Be sent as a Facebook Notification to their own account
- Posted to their mini-feed along with a flight description for sharing with friends
- Emailed to any specified address
- Sent as a text message to a mobile device

Alert messages are sent for:
- Status confirmation up to 3 hours prior to departure
- Notification if the flight is delayed by more than 30 minutes
- Notification if the flight is canceled or diverted
- Arrival notification when the flight lands

See Also: Review the Entire ResourceShelf Real-Time Information Compilation


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