Air passengers rail against allowing mobile-phone calls on planes

Passengers have a voice too. This story shows how airlines are taking away more rights from passengers, now some Airlines don’t let you choose your seat!


Excellent, nothing worse than someone shouting down a phone during a flight!



If this passes through I would rather sit in the bathroom the entire duration of the flight than sit by someone yapping on their phone. That’s equivalent to a baby crying (at least you will feel bad for them)


That’s stupid why would they allow that if it can interfere with ATC communication


Because it can’t! :)


At least one American airline lets you use your Mobile service during flight (JetBlue)

Like… Talk on the phone at cruise?

When I was on a JetBlue flight they announced that the FAA now allows passangers to use their mobile service during flight because test proved that they did not interfere with ATC communications.

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Yes if you have cell service you can make a phone call at cruise

It’s not possible to use a phone when flying at 440knots so why bother banning it?

Why so? How do you know?

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Actually it is possible I tried to make a call while cruising at 12,000 feet on JetBlue to test it, and it worked for a little bit (I also face timed someone using JetBlue free WIFI)

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Yes. I know it’s possible, I’d like to hear why you apparently can’t.


When you are moving and are on the phone, your signal goes to one tower as you approach a closer tower the tower gets ready to take your signal, that takes around 1/5 of a second, you change towers. The towers are minimum 20 metres away, yet a lot are around 120 metres away. When you are flying at mach 0.8 you go at nearly 300 m/s. By the time one tower tells the other tower of incoming call signal, the signal is gone. A Japanese company in 2003 I believe, tested whether they could use a phone in a Cessna 172, by 6000ft the signal can not work. So even if the plane decided to put out spoiler and flare up to stop mid air, while you are free falling to the ground you won’t be able to call anyone till around 4000ft. However modern planes are starting to install special equipment allowing people to call friends whilst at Mach 0.8 and 35,000ft. Yet without this equipment it is physically impossible to call anyone except another aircraft or atc with an airphone.

I used the wifi to call other people with iphones

Wifi is cheating, that is not cellular service. I usually get some bars around 6k but it comes in and out switching towers. WIFI is disabled below 10k so that kills some of the fun. They let you use it while on the ground at least once you land. Does it mess with the plane, probably not. But since there are new phones all the time I don’t want the one time that a new version comes out to find out the hard way.

People who complain about airlines taking things away are the same people who are looking for the $69 dollar LAX to JFK round trip.


Well said Chris. You couldn’t be more correct.

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The Mythbusters tested this after someone asked whether they ban phone calls just to make us pay for they in-flight phone, and it’s not that. It didn’t even interfere with the cockpit instruments. They ban calls because the telecommunication towers would be confused as to which one the call should go through as the call signal gets bounced back by the ionosphere.

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