OnAir Backs FCC in-flight mobile phone proposal

Switzerland-based in-flight connectivity firm OnAir said it supports US regulator the Federal Communications Commission in its move to end the ban on the use of cell phones on aircraft.

Mobile OnAir, OnAir´s inflight mobile phone service, has flown with more than 25 airlines on thousands of flights across the world since 2007, with the full backing of over 100 national authorities, the firm said.

There has not been a single complaint about disruption caused by people making calls, it added.

The Tentative Agenda for the FCC meeting on December 12 2013 includes an item that will address the use of mobile communications on commercial aircraft.

Should this be passed, the next stage will be a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, opening the way for repeal of the current ban with authority to use frequencies on a secondary, non-interference basis, over all US and international mobile communications bands.

As well as the mutual recognition of systems operating on foreign-flagged aircraft meeting equivalent technical standards. Providing for the licensed use of cell phones on aircraft will in turn increase global consumer choice for inflight broadband connectivity.

The FCC´s intention is very clear: give consumers access to inflight cell phone services by revising outdated and restrictive rules.

OnAir´s airline customers which provide Mobile OnAir include world–leading global airlines such as Aeroflot, British Airways, Emirates, Philippine Airlines, Qatar Airways and Singapore Airlines.

Passengers typically use Mobile OnAir for data – largely email – and to update Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) and Twitter (NASDAQ: TWTR).

Voice calls account for slightly over 10% of total inflight usage, the firm said.

Find out more at www.onair.aero.

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