Ofcom plans aeroplane mobile phones


The proposed system would create an on-board station, which connects to passengers’ mobile phones, enabling them to make and receive calls or texts. If the system is successful it could be extended to cover 3G services.

Cabin crew would only switch on the system once the aircraft reaches 3000 metres, meaning that passengers can’t use their phones during take-off or landing.

Ofcom’s proposals are aimed at UK-registered aircrafts and will only be implemented upon approval by relevant UK and European aviation authorities.

An Ofcom spokesman said: “Ofcom’s objective is to create opportunities for companies to develop innovative technologies, in particular to make the most efficient use of the radio spectrum for the benefit of citizens and consumers.

“The proposals set out in our consultation would allow UK-registered airlines to offer mobile services if they judge that there is consumer demand for them.”