FAA Changing Gadget Rule

It seems I have been complaining for years about the silly requirement of turning off our mobile devices at landing and take off of airplanes. Good news may be just around the corner because we will eventually be able to continue using our mobile devices on takeoff and landing, according to the FAA. The American government organization overseeing air travel today announced that travelers won’t face regulations that are as strict as we have been accustomed to when it comes to electronics on planes.

However this does not mean you can continue playing Candy Crush or in my case Mahjong while waiting for your takeoff just yet. The roll out and specifics of the changes will vary depending on each airline since there are differences between types of planes and how things are run at each different carrier, but the FAA anticipates that most will allow passengers to use their mobile devices “in airplane mode, gate-to-gate, by the end of the year.”

Passengers can use e-book readers, play games and watch videos on devices, and can hold gadgets during both take-off and landing, or else stow them in the seatback pocket. These gadgets need to be in Airplane Mode or have cell service turned off during both landing and taxi/take-off, but you can actually use Wi-Fi during your flight and continue to use Bluetooth accessories connected to your phone.

Soon I will be able to finish watching Star Trek as the plane lands!

My personal  belief on this long time rule is that the FAA simply wanted the passengers to pay attention during take off and landing and that no iPhone has the ability to take down a airplane. I am glad that finally this out dated and unnecessary regulation is about to end. Do you know how many times I had about 10 minutes left on my Star Trek episode when the announcement is made to turn off all electronic devices and my wife starts hitting me in the arm repeatability saying “Turn it off Bill!”

I will talk about “airplane mode” in more detail in a future article.