A Low Altitude Connections


Flying the friendly skies could get a little more entertaining.

Earlier this week the Federal Aviation Administration announced it was going to explore ways for passengers to use electronic devices during take-offs and landings. The FAA says the first step is to gather all the key players; this includes airlines, aircraft manufacturers, electronics makers and flight attendant unions. Then the group will discuss how to test gadgets such as phones and laptops to see if they are safe for use during critical in-flight moments.

Technically airlines are currently allowed to test specific makes and models of devices to see if they interfere with critical equipment. But most airlines choose not to do so because there are so many makes and models on the market. Instead they comply with FAA rules and ask passengers to shut off their electronics when under 10,000 feet. But this won’t be an easy process.

If the testing happens and a device is approved any updated versions will have to go through the same process before passengers can use them. And considering companies such as Apple put out a new model almost every year it could be awhile before you have a low altitude connection.