Following a ruling by the an F.A.A. advisory panel that the agency should lift its restrictions on personal electronic devices, the Federal Aviation Administration has announced that passengers will be allowed to use devices during all phases of flight. Passengers will be allowed to read, work, play games, listen to music, and watch movies, but will not be able to talk on cellphones and must have all cellular-enabled devices switched to airplane mode. Now that the F.A.A. has lifted its restrictions, it’s up to individual airlines to revise their policies before passengers can use their personal electronics gate-to-gate. The agency expects most airlines to allow expanded electronic use by the end of the year.
Passengers will eventually be able to read e-books, play games, and watch videos on their devices during all phases of flight, with very limited exceptions. Electronic items, books and magazines, must be held or put in the seat back pocket during the actual takeoff and landing roll. Cell phones should be in airplane mode or with cellular service disabled – i.e., no signal bars displayed—and cannot be used for voice communications based on FCC regulations that prohibit any airborne calls using cell phones. If your air carrier provides Wi-Fi service during flight, you may use those services. You can also continue to use short-range Bluetooth accessories, like wireless keyboards.
image via Kitty Terwolbeck