Delta Air Lines is equipping its 11,000 pilots with Microsoft's latest Surface 2 tablet. The move had been rumored and means that pilots will access electronic documents, charts, checklists, and navigational aids from the Surface 2 running Windows RT 8.1. The airline's primary motivation for a Surface 2 rollout appears to be reduced carbon emissions. The airline will eliminate the use of 7.5 million sheets of paper every year and reduce its emissions by 1.2 million fewer gallons of fuel.
Microsoft and Delta have previously partnered to supply 19,000 flight attendants with Nokia's Lumia 820 Windows Phone handsets. Reports suggested that Delta was also planning to select Nokia's upcoming Windows RT tablet, but switched to Microsoft's Surface 2 one instead. It's not clear why the plans changed, but the Windows tablet addition is clearly a natural follow-up to the existing Windows Phone rollout. Delta now plans to equip pilots of its Boeing 757 and 767 fleets later this year, with all cockpits switching to Surface 2 by the end of 2014.