It looks like making a legal in-flight call on your iPhone, or any other smartphone for that matter, won’t be happening soon, as United States Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai says he wants to terminate an “ill-conceived plan” to relax rules prohibiting passenger from making calls or surfing the web via their cellular phones.
“I stand with airline pilots, flight attendants, and America’s flying public against the FCC’s ill-conceived 2013 plan to allow people to make cellphone calls on planes. I do not believe that moving forward with this plan is in the public interest. Taking it off the table permanently will be a victory for Americans across the country who, like me, value a moment of quiet at 30,000 feet.”
The FCC in late 2013 announced plans to introduce a proposal that would allow airline passengers to make calls and browse the web via their cellular phones. The proposal flew in the face of protests from airlines, pilots, flight attendants, and consumer groups. The outcry led the Department of Transportation to announce they would consider banning in-flight calls if the FCC approved the measure.
The FCC has been said to have been investigating the safety of in-flight cellphone usage on planes, and the proposal has gone nowhere. How, it appears the idea will finally die. However, devices such as iPhones and iPads can be used during flights, although cellular service must be disabled via Airplane Mode.