New Delhi: If you thought you will be able to talk to your dear ones on phone while flying, you are in for disappointment at least for now.
The Department of Telecom (DoT) has grounded the Trai proposal on allowing mobile services onboard aircraft.
A DoT standing committee, which deliberated on the Trai proposals, said only internet may be allowed as in-flight connectivity.
“To start with it is advisable to permit only internet as in-flight connectivity (IFC) in the Indian airspace. Hence, only provision of internet as IFC in the Indian airspace is recommended at this stage,” an internal DoT note stated quoting the views of the committee.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority India (Trai) had favoured in-flight mobile communications on aircraft (MCA). The DoT note further said, “Mobile communications on aircraft is still evolving and the same shall be considered subsequently and the matter be brought before the Telecom Commission in the next six months.”
The standing committee has taken this call after receiving inputs from the security division and Telecom Engineering Centre, which is the standard certification unit of the DoT.
In fact, the unfavourable inputs of these two division may be enough to take a decision on Trai’s IFC recommendations.
Trai had recommended that airlines be allowed to offer both internet and mobile communication services to flyers with certain conditions put in place for security reasons.
While internet can be provided from the moment a plane takes off but personal electronic devices have to be put on flight mode.
Mobile services can be allowed when aircraft are over an altitude of 3,000 metre.
Trai had also suggested that internet services through onboard WiFi services should be available which the panel has endorsed....