Feeds

back to article Ofcom hits green on in-flight calling

Ofcom will allow airlines to install GSM base stations on their planes, operating at 1800MHz, as long as they are only used more than 3km from the ground. The regulator has no say over the safety of using a mobile on a plane, but is responsible for deciding what frequencies in-flight calling can use and how much to charge …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.

Ban it for safety reasons!

Nothing to do with interference from the phones affecting the planes. Simply to stop irate passengers taking mobile phones from teenagers or loudmouthed business people and sticking them where the sun doesn't shine after being subjected to their inane drivel for an entire flight while forced to sit next to them in a seat that a hamster would struggle to fit into.

Ban 'em... ban 'em now.

0
0

Nooooooo!!!!

I don't fly much, hardly at all infact, but the last thing I want on a plane is having to sit next to the sort of c*ts that get onto the train and leave their mobile superglued to their face going "yeah, I know, OMFG, no, he dint, no, never, really, nor, that's like todally... " or "yeah, err, I think Steve should have visibillity of that, maybe go to a hundred K on it, get the contract drawn up for a mil units at that price..."

If we can't be free from these people in the Air, where can we be?

In other news, I predict a massive increase in air rage.

0
0
Stop

Simple answer to that problem

It's going to cost a blinking fortune to use your mobile in a plane (satellite connections).

When was the last time you saw someone use one of those credit-card phone handsets in a plane?

Jolyon

0
0

Oh please god no!

Sometimes, just sometimes I wish someone would say why do we need this.

Mobile phone users are selfish pigs who have no regard for the people around them who get to suffer half their conversations, I look forward to being in places where I don't have to listen to them, and others don't have to listen to me.

3Km up before you can use it, b*ll*£ks, as soon as you can use them on plains, it'll be any time, as people just won't turn them off, and won't understand, any airline rules, because you can bet they'll be different on each airline, and don't the cabin crew have enough to do already? I can't see them shutting up a phone user, no matter how many people they annoy.

I suppose the only hope is that airlines will make the use of a phone, on a plane really expensive, like $10 a minute to receive, $15 to make, and texts $5.

0
0
Bronze badge
Flame

FuckOffCom

Did somebody put these people on the Earth just to dream up new schemes to annoy me?

First allowing commercial TV channels to broadcast 59 minutes of adverts per hour, now this shit. What's the matter with them? Have they never watched TV or been on a plane? Do they have a government remit to go round finding really annoying things to make them just a little bit more annoying?

I agree with Craig, Fraser and all the other irate people who are doubtless going to vent their spleen between their posts and mine. Bastards.

0
0
Thumb Down

Stop complaining

I'm pretty sure that everyone who complains about people talking on mobiles in public places must be a stuck-up twat with no mates. It's basically no different to people having conversations in public places - and they've been doing that for years. For the people that insist on complaining about it - GET A LIFE. Just because you don't have any friends to communicate with, doesn't mean no-one else does.

Of course, the result of the decision that means that plane mobile systems won't be price-capped means that the price of mobile calls will be no different to the price of air-phone calls, so people won't be spending hours chatting unless they have a fortune to spend. And if they have that much to spend they will probably be sat in business or first where people aren't packed in like sardines.

0
0
Linux

@Fraser

I think that if the kissies have to pay the roaming charges themselves, they will do that once or twice, but then think twice about doing it:

In terms of air rage: It is a proven fact, that air rage got significantly worse, when non smoking flights where introduced!

I am not saying that because I am a smoker, but because it is a fact and it even makes sense (for a change):

The main issue is that smokers are addicts (and I include myself there).

Most addicts get disgruntled and simply annoyed with everyone and everything around them, when they don't get their "meds". Some people react more intense than others, and some can keep it under raps for a prolonged period of time.

But apart from that, I agree with you: the majority of the calls are unnecessary, even though I had plenty of situations, where I had hoped I'd had a phone while in the air (I am on a plane around twice a week flying to anywhere in Europe)

All the best

0
0

Price

I wouldn't worry. At a couple of quid a minute, few people will bother.

How many passengers use existing satellite telephone systems?

0
0

Plane peace

I really think the best solution to annoyances on planes is just to drug everyone so they all sleep through the flight. Then no one can chat on the phone, kids can't kick seats, babies aren't screaming their heads off, and no one has to bother serving crap food that no one really wants to eat.

Oh well, I hope at least we can demand Bose noise canceling headphones then as some human right if we're going to be subjected to idiots on the phone. Hopefully also the operators will sting them at £100 a minute. They'll soon stop.

0
0
Silver badge

Price Cap

Wring answer on the price cap. Making calls available at high cost, there's always someone on a business expense account who will use it because someone else is paying. They should include calls from aircraft in the price controls, so it will be uneconomic and therefore not happen.

Sometimes it pays to think laterally.

0
0
Flame

@Craig & Fraser

How is that any different from the two people sitting next to each other and having the same conversation? The fact that mobile phones enable more people to have more conversations, and more convenient times, while not physically next to each other is a *good* thing!

If you don't want to listen to other people's conversations, keep yourselves locked up in a quiet dank hole somewhere, you miserable pricks*

* Ooh, was that a little harsh? I never can tell.

0
0
(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Plane peace

Yes! Break out the free Valium with the first round of refreshments.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

Partitioned classes?

Having done away with separating passengers into smoking and non-smoking sections, I'd suggest an introduction of mobile and non-mobile sections within cattle-class. What happens elsewhere on the plane doesn't concern me.

0
0

@ those who want to use their phones

I take it you've never been on a rush hour train with a bunch of mobile phone users. It usually goes:

"hello"

"eh?"

"sorry, can't hear you"

"you can't hear me either? OK, I'll speak up a bit"

"yes, I'm on the train. Sorry, YES I'M ON THE TRAIN"

Then it descends into either useless blether about Shazza's latest boyfriend or how important the caller's latest business transactions have been.

Now put this on a pressurised tin-can with high-powered aircon units and the ever-present loud drone of the engines and it'll be 10 times worse.

Back to the scenario of two people talkiing... great! I do it all the time when I'm on a plane but I never need to talk at the volume that 99% of public transport phone users talk at.

Bit of admission: I do use my phone on the train as it's fairly essential to my business but I rarely, if ever, allow the call to go beyond "hi, I'm on the train, can I call you back when I get to (wherever it is I'm going)?"

0
0

Ohh dear

On my commute train to Moorgate every morning I look forward to getting into the tunnel for the last 4 stops so that I dont have to listen to the stupid people on the train on their phones.

Interestingly, flying recently I left my phone on (forgot to turn it off as it was in my coat in the overhead storage). When I got off the plane I noticed that the battery was REALLY hot (as in cant keep finger firmly on it for over 5 seconds).

I guess its down to pressure. Any further suggestions what was going on?

0
0

Re: Ohh dear

The battery might be hot because the phone is constantly searching for a signal. I believe they use a lot of power when doing this, or at least I've noticed the battery drain much faster when out of signal range.

Either that or you've got one of those exploding lithiums :-)

Lucky they didn't announce it though to everyone on the flight. Was on a flight once where the captain announced there was a phone on and even pinpointed to the stewards which overhead bin it was in (or rough area). No idea how they did that.

0
0
Heart

Oh to be back in Japan...

Just back from a fortnight's holiday in Japan - mobile phones have to be on silent when traveling on a train or bus and when seated next to a disabled seat they have to be switched off completely. When you want to make a call you have to go to the end of the compartment on a train (a sin bin) the other side of sliding doors to take the call.

It was marvellous! Rail and bus travel was a pleasure.

Perhaps mobile phones would be okay on planes as long as you have similar sin bins - perhaps outside strapped to the wings?

0
0

@Steve Sutton

It is very different using a mobile phone to talking on a normal phone or to talking to someone next to you.

With a normal phone you get some foldback of the noise of your own voice in your ear, so you talk approximately normally.

Talking to someone next to you, in a noisy environment, you lip read really quite a lot of what they are saying.

Using a mobile phone, with no foldback of your own voice, you speak louder than normal, if you are doing this in a noisy environment (say, the cabin of an aircraft), you do it louder still, as you can't see the person you are talking to, even louder still.

Have you never been on a rush hour train?

You big tit.

0
0

@AC Re@ Stop complaining

I dont think its people talking on phones that people are complaining about as such, its just the volume that they talk at.

Thanks to GSM and CDMA its been a good while since you had to shout like in the bad old days of analogue TACS and its supposedly superior ETACS, with digital you either get a signal or you dont, shouting will not change this, yes indeed people talk in public who are in close proximity but they don't shout at each other

Sadly there are some dimwits that do not understand this so I suppose the rememedy should be this.

1. Every phone sold should include a leaflet on mobile phone etiquette with the fact that you dont meed to shout emblazened in bold letters.

2. I'm assuming the cabin crew will have some control over the base station. surely this should be extended to allowing dumping/blocking of individual calls or users, so heres how it would work.

In order to use the service, customers should be required to register their name and number with the airline at booking time or perhaps on the plane which is input into the control system for the onboard BTS.

If one of customers turns out to be one of these loudmouths they should be given a polite warning, if they persist it should be possible for their call to be dumped.

If they dial again and repeat the offence then they can be blocked from using the facility for the rest of the flight and fined (via their phone bill of course) a hefty amount (50 quid sounds reasonable for this offence)

Sound reasonable?

0
0
Paris Hilton

Talking without communicating

Went to church recently (I know, I was shocked as well) and the Vicar was talking about how it's odd that nowadays we have so many methods of communicating, phones, computers etc. that we don't know what to do with all this, and are reduced to talking for the sake of talking. How much of this talking actually has any meaning and isn't just meaningless drivel??? I can tell you it's not just phones that induce this as my office is filled with meaningless chit chat about last nights Eastenders. When was the last time that you had a really meaningful conversation over the phone with someone important to you?

When was the last time Paris had a meaningful conversation??????

0
0
Bronze badge
Happy

@Steve Sutton - Trigger Happy TV

You probably float gaily through life, bleating your inane phone-drivel at the top of your voice, blissfully unaware that 90% of the people around you think you are a complete and utter cunt.

The other 10% have got their iPods on.

See that Dom Joly, on Trigger Happy TV, with the massive Nokia, shouting "I'M ON THE TRAIN"?

That's you, that is.

0
0
Paris Hilton

Ringtones, esp. overnight

People speak louder on mobiles than in normal conversation, as Fraser says, but I guess we'd get used to that. Most people have learned to live with this problem in other situations, however annoying it may be.

What would cause the air rage though is the RINGING of mobile phones, not the conversations. In the confined space of a 747, you have 300+ people in Economy ALL within earshot of each others' mobile phones. It could be a nightmare, especially with some people attempting to get some sleep even during the day (to pre-empt jet lag I assume).

Unless they switched off the on board station overnight, then that's what would really cause the problems, and you could have some genuinely serious incidents.

Paris, because she also doesn't appear to switch off overnight.

0
0
Silver badge

Sounds like hell to me...

Only the other day I had the pleasure of sitting in a train with someone who was obviously designed at birth to be an annoying tw*t...

First he received at least 6 calls before we had even left the station, and had the worlds loudest, most annoying ringtone. It wouldn't have been so bad if he'd kept the phone to hand after the first call, but no, he buried in a pocket so we all got 15 seconds of his chosen "tune" each time...

Eventually we set off, and the calls stopped... Only for him to decide to use his phone as a mobile hifi unit and start playing some gangster rap through the tinny speaker!

Oh, and then he started to "sing" along with it!

I was half tempted to dig into the mp3 collection on my N95 and start singing Grace Kelly by Mika, cos I could really destroy that song, and I'm sure the 2 speakers on the N95 would have completely drowned out his crappy thing... But I resisted on the grounds that anyone singing gangster rap was probably "tooled-up".

Oh, did I mention this carriage on the C2C train was a designated "silent" one?

Thank God it was only a 20 minute journey for me, I don't even want to try to imagine what it would be like on a long flight... However at least one flight you can find a representative of the airline (easy to spot, they're usually trying to sell you scratch cards), who you can inform of you plan to murder a fellow passenger!

0
0

For a funny look at a serious subject ...

...check out "Wi-fi on airplanes? Enough already!" at http://undercoveritcorrespondent.wordpress.com

Michael Gentle

0
0
This topic is closed for new posts.