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EU approves 3G and 4G use aboard aircraft

3000 metres up and you're good to go

by Mark Hodgkinson Nov 15, 2013

  • Tech News


    EU approves 3G and 4G use aboard aircraft
    Just after granting passengers the right to use their mobile devices during take-off and landing, the EC has, today, taking it a step further by green-lighting Airlines to deploy 3G and 4G networks on their planes.
    The Commission has said that from now onwards, the spectra for 3G (UMTS) and 4G (LTE) communications may be used when the aircraft is above 3000 metres. Up until now, only 2G services had been allowed, so this is a great boon to travellers within the EU, particularly those who want to catch up on some work in-flight.

    The EC is keen to point out that the EU decision creates the possibility for airlines – rather than a right for passengers - to allow use of smartphones and tablets during flights and it’s possible some may not, although that is likely to de damaging to their business.
    It's not a passenger right - that's down to the airlines.
    So now we can expect Airlines to develop a new breed of in-flight internet services – at a cost - and the touting of their network superiority over the rest. Airlines will remain in charge of what services they choose to equip their planes with, of course, but industry surveys indicate SMS and email are of greater interest to passengers than voice.

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