One Step Closer To Mobile Phones In The Air

from the inching-closer dept

The question of whether or not people should be allowed to use mobile phones while on airplanes has been a popular topic around here. While the FAA has commissioned a study to look into the effects of mobile phones on airplane equipment, it sounds like they’ve already been studying it to some extent. Someone who prefers to remain anonymous is telling me that American Airlines will announce later today that, after months of studying the issue, they’re going to officially let people use phones, laptops, pagers, etc until the door is shut (right now the policy is that if the “seat belt” sign is on, you can’t be using these devices). They will also allow mobile phone use after landing, while the plane taxis to the gate. They say they’ve done studies and there are no risks of the devices interfering with airplane equipment at these times. Well, it’s nice of them to make this change official, but I would bet that most people already think this is the policy, based on the number of people (including myself) who use mobile phones until the door is shut, and immediately upon landing. Still, it’s good to see some progress is being made towards figuring out what the issues are with mobile phones and airplanes. When this story is announced, I’ll link to the details. Update: Well, here’s the official announcement.

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