On the 27th of November, 2023, Robert Randazzo took to the PMDG forums to announce the latest updates to their UFT (Universal Flight Tablet) in their Boeing 737 lineup for Microsoft Flight Simulator.
This update has been pushed through the PMDG Operations Center for individuals who have purchased the product directly from PMDG and brought the aircraft to version 3.00.0085 and the tablet to 1.4.0.
For individuals who have purchased through the MSFS Marketplace on PC, the update adding the tablet to your Boeing 737 was due on November 30, 2023. The next update will arrive 14 days later if all goes well through Marketplace intake.
Xbox Marketplace customers are still unable to use the UFT. Robert has stated that PMDG is working with the platform developer to try to resolve this. At this time, there are no updates expected.
PMDG’s UFT new features
The tablet will now recognise changes made to flight plans in the FMC. These changes will be reflected on the map screen, giving you the best opportunity to see where it is you’re flying over.
Any issues while flying? Not a problem; the tablet will also take care of diversions and reroutes. That is another feature I think will benefit from the map screen updating with the FMC.
“New route added” was appearing far too often; this issue has now been resolved in this latest patch. You can also now edit all the available fields in the winds section.
If you fancied a bit of late-night flying, you may have noticed some issues with the METAR facilities between 0000z and 0100z. According to the release notes, this issue has been resolved, and the METAR facility within the tablet should now work 24 hours a day. There is now a two-click integration with Simbrief. RTE/PAYLOAD/FUEL/PERF INIT, and it then loads your route into the FMC.
The arrival airport input field is now correctly asking for the ICAO code on the performance page, rather than the runway that you wish to use. You can now also correctly load the weather, as that system within the UFT is now operational.
Along with the above-mentioned updates, there are some smaller changes, such as namespacing issues have been resolved, jSON has been implemented for all the tablet-plane communications, the chart screen is now full-screen on the UFT, landing data is imported correctly, and CO RTE is now showing the correct name.
What’s coming next?
As was touched on in our PMDG’s 2-hour exclusive SkyBlueRadio interview report, PMDG is now running a “3 and 1” cycle. Three weeks to push major change updates for the UFT followed one week later with a stability/corrections update.
NOTAM for Simbrief users
If you generate a flight plan for the Boeing 737 using Simbrief, ensure you select an airline and flight number with the plan. There is a known bug that makes the aircraft “fail unceremoniously” upon flight plan loading if these are not populated. Robert has said that the following update will fix this issue.
Overall, this is a promising update from PMDG for their UFT, and we can’t wait to see what other functionalities are going to be brought to the tablet in the coming months. If you want to read the release, click here.