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Airbus ready to fly mobile phones

Airbus ready to fly mobile phones

The hibernation of mobile phones on board airplanes (and peace, resulting from the silence of the ringtones) is about to end: Airbus announces that it is the first company in the world to have obtained the green light from the European authorities for the use of mobile phones on board an aircraft.

On June 18, the company explains in a statement, the EASA – European Aviation Safety Agency approved the system based on GSM technology developed by Airbus. The certification follows a series of compatibility tests conducted by Airbus at the beginning of the year to verify the compatibility of the GSM system with the on-board instrumentation.

The green light granted to Airbus will open the doors (and aircraft hatches), within the next few months, to the introduction of the OnAir service, which will allow passengers to use mobile phones and smartphones on European routes, for telephone calls, emails and SMS. “The crew – explains the note – can easily manage the service with the possibility of deciding for
the “voice-off” option, which only allows the sending of emails and SMS.

OnAir, a joint venture between Airbus and SITA, will provide the connectivity services, which will initially be made available on Airbus single-aisle airplanes for short-haul flights in Western Europe. “The certification – explained Rainer von Borstel, Airbus Senior Vice President Cabin & Cargo Customization – will allow us in the future to offer cellular telephone and internet services on all types of Airbus aircraft”.