Soon, flyers in India can access mobile and internet services on-board aircraft
New Delhi, Jan 19: Flyers in India would soon be able to access mobile and internet services onboard aircraft as telecom regulator on Friday recommended allowing these services as part of in-flight connectivity in the Indian airspace.
However, the operation of mobile communication on aircraft (MCA) services should be permitted with a minimum height restriction of 3,000 meters in Indian airspace, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) said in its recommendations on ‘In-Flight Connectivity’. The height restriction is placed to avoid accessing the terrestrial mobile networks.
Trai said 83% of the passengers would prefer airlines that provided internet connections. Air passengers expect the same kind of connectivity on board as they do at home or office. Also, there was an increasing interest in use of mobile phones on aircraft, Trai said, adding that already over 30 airlines, and 40 jurisdictions, allow such usage on board.
Internet services through Wi-Fi onboard should be made available when electronic devices are permitted to be used only in-flight or airplane mode and announcement regarding this should be made after boarding is completed and the plane is about to take off. “It would ensure that there is no encroachment on the scope of terrestrial Internet service provided by telecom service providers as well as practically there won’t be any appreciable discontinuity in the provisioning of Internet services to the fliers,” Trai said.