Feeds

Fondling slabs during takeoff WON'T end in a fireball of death - report

Unless, of course, you happen to be the pilot

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

The Federal Aviation Administration's advisory committee reckons it's safe for air passengers to read ebooks and use tablets during takeoff and landing – as long as the built-in radios remain switched off.

The US governmental body in charge of air transport isn't obliged to follow the recommendation of the 28-member committee, but it is likely to approve a change to the rules. The proposed amendment could permit flight-safe-mode electronics to be used during takeoff and landing by early next year, as the Associated Press reports.

Flight-safe mode will still be needed for the first 10,000ft (3,000m) as the radios on mobile devices are still a concern, and phones soaring over cellular base stations are a right pain for the network operators, anyway. But anyone wanting to read an ebook, edit some PowerPoint or play a round of Candy Crush will be free to do so – as long as they don't need to go online to do it.

Current rules don't allow the use of any device below 3,000m for fear that it will interfere with flight instruments. Above that height some airlines have Wi-Fi available, and a few run a GSM base station to enable (hugely expensive, satellite-backhauled) cellular roaming, but for the majority it's still flight mode all the way.

While it seems sensible to let a passenger read their Kindle as the plane taxies to the runway we'd have to question how advisable it is to allow the businessman with a 15-inch laptop squeezed into his economy seating to use his – what's the point of folding up the tray tables when there's two-and-a-half kilos of aluminium and glass poised to crash around the cabin?

Which will be the next problem, assuming the FCC (communication regulator) agrees with the FAA (aviation regulator) and the whole thing gets fast-tracked through.

But for those of us with lighter hardware it will mean a little less enforced relaxation and a little more time to work on that presentation. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'
PM urged to 'prioritise issue' after Facebook hindsight find
Assange™ slumps back on Ecuador's sofa after detention appeal binned
Swedish court rules there's 'great risk' WikiLeaker will dodge prosecution
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
NSA mass spying reform KILLED by US Senators
Democrats needed just TWO more votes to keep alive bill reining in some surveillance
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Business security measures using SSL
Examines the major types of threats to information security that businesses face today and the techniques for mitigating those threats.