Yesterday the FAA released their guidance for personal electronic devices on planes. Taking a look at it guidelines it is something that most airlines are doing already, although I’ve been witness to and have heard some pretty crazy stories about airline staff going to some pretty extreme lengths to make sure your personal electronic devices are turned off, not just in airplane mode. Currently most airlines do not allow you to have personal electronic devices turned on till the aircraft reaches 10,000 feet, which seems pretty ridiculous.
The new FAA rules say that ant devices that does not communicate with cellular towers or make phone calls can remain on during the entire duration of the flight from gate to gate. This more relaxed take on things makes sense as the only technologies that could really cause problems are cellular data and voice technologies that are on most phones and some tablets and laptops. Larger and heavier personal electronic devices like laptops will still have to be stowed during take off though.
The FAA has created the infographic that you see below to explain what the new rules are and what is and isn’t allowed.
The FAA expects airlines to adopt these new guidelines by the end of 2013. Although some airlines still might be pretty strict if you are on an older plane as they believe they are more susceptible to interference. If you think about it any phone or tablet that has passed FCC regulations could never emit enough interference from non-cellular usage to affect the planes instruments. So as long as your device is in airplane mode then you should be good to go.