Wireless interference from an iPhone has been blamed for disrupting the compasses on a regional airliner and sending pilots several miles off course. The incident happened on a 2011 flight as it climbed past 9,000 feet, but the issue was resolved when a flight attendant asked a passenger to turn their iPhone off.
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The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today pushed for a wider use of electronic portable devices in-flight.
In a letter to Michael Huerta, the acting administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski called for the FAA to “enable greater use of tablets, e-readers, and other portable devices” during airplane travel.
About time, right?
Using an iPad on a plane during takeoff is one of the biggest sins in the galaxy. Just ask Alec Baldwin. There hasn’t been much proof that it’s bad, but no one wants to test fate. The Federal Avaiation Administration is finally starting to relax on their electronics rules though.
American Airlines just became the first commercial carrier to get FAA approval to kit their pilots’ flight bags with iPads, and they get to use them in “all phases of flight.” I bet the pilots are stoked that they get play Angry Birds In Space during takeoff.
No one likes turning off their portable electronics on a flight during takeoff and landing, especially if they’re as harmless as an iPod or an e-reader. And the rule if often the subject of debate as we all become more reliant on these devices on a daily basis.
Thankfully, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is now ready to reconsider the rule, and it’s asking passengers, flight attendants, airlines, and the makers of electronic devices for their opinion. Tell the FAA you think the rule is silly and you could help towards getting it abolished.
There’s been a lot of news stories this year about iPhone and iPad use by U.S. federal agencies. Most of those stories have been reports of agencies ditching BlackBerries for iPhones and/or iPads.
This week’s news from the FAA is different in that the FAA already has iPads in the hands of employees and the agency is planning to expand their user dramatically – to the point where employees will be offered a choice between an iPad and a laptop as their mobile computing device.
Anyone who’s ever flown is familiar with the “please turn off all electronic devices” speech that flight attendants give after closing the airplane door and again shortly before landing. The ban on electronic devices of all kinds exists out of fear that devices might interfere with the planes navigation and other systems, even if the device doesn’t include any sort of radio antenna.
The ban on electronic devices has come under fire recently as the F.A.A. has been certifying the use of iPads in the cockpit during all phases of flight (including takeoff and landing) by various commercial airlines as a replacement for hefty “flight bags” of paper manuals and charts.
In a move that will music to the ears of Words With Friends addict Alec Baldwin, the agency is looking at allowing the use of electronic devices by passengers during takeoff and landing
American Airlines’ pilots will soon be able to exchange 35 pounds of charts and manuals for a 1.5 iPad. The airline becomes the world’s first to use the Apple tablet in the cockpit and throughout the flight, saving an estimated $1.2 million in fuel annually.
Our opinion of the government has never been lower, and every day there is ample proof why. Take the FAA, for example. Despite the absolute lack of evidence that your iPhone can knock a plane from the sky, passengers are still told to turn off their phones. The reason why such a Luddite-like rule exists without any proof? Because there’s no proof iPhones won’t hurt planes, either. Don’t get whiplash shaking your head in utter amazement.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has given airlines the go ahead to ditch old fashioned flight bags in favor of the iPad — a move that promises to save paper, time and money.