In flight mobile phone trial ready for takeoff

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) welcomes today’s announcement of a limited trial of mobile phone use in flight on aircraft.

AMTA’s Chief Executive Officer, Chris Althaus, said: “AMTA welcomes today’s announcement by the Australian Communications and Media Authority to give the go ahead to a limited in-flight trial and supports the expanded use of mobile telephony and data services on aircraft in flight following assessment of relevant technical and safety issues.

“It is sensible approach, let’s have a trial and see how consumers feel about it, see how the technology works. For business and other travellers in-flight access to the rapidly growing array of data services via 3G technology will be an important new communications opportunity.”

ACMA’s announcement said the trial on a Qantas passenger aircraft would be limited to email and text only and voice services would not be available as part of the trial.

Mr Althaus said: “Mobile etiquette in such a confined space will be very important. People will need to be aware and respectful of other people’s space. We are simply highlighting that etiquette will be an issue and people need to be responsible and respectful of other people when they are using a phone.

“Passengers can enjoy the benefits of their mobile phones while recognising the specific characteristics of phone use in a confined environment. It will be important for airlines to manage the introduction of in flight mobile phone calling to ensure that passengers can enjoy the benefits of their mobile phones.”

For more information contact Randal Markey, Manager, Communications, (02) 6239 6555 or 0421 240 550