Monday, April 11, 2016

We are so connected to our smart phones that it can be annoying when we have to turn them on airplane mode during a flight. But, there is a good reason we still have to do it, despite updates in technology.

The older model phones brought a concern that their signals would interfere with air traffic control or airplane telecommunications. But, that’s not the case.

Phones in use can create annoying sounds for your pilot. It’s the same kind of noise as the feedback you hear when your phone is near a speaker. And you certainly don’t want to be annoying the people who are flying the plane you are riding on!

A pilot wrote about this on Airline Update:

I’m going to blow the mind of every frequent flyer out there and say this: cell phones can and do interfere with airplanes. Transmitting cell phones can cause audible interference on the aircraft’s radios. You’ve probably heard this interference yourself when a phone is set near a speaker. It sounds like a “dit-dit-dit-dit” tone and it’s pretty annoying. Anyone who has had to track down audio interference in a sound system understands.

So, if cell phones actually DO interfere why haven’t I heard about it?
First of all, it’s fairly rare. The interference doesn’t happen every time a phone is on inside an airplane. I hear it maybe once or twice a month, and I fly about 50 flights every month. So it’s rare, but I’m guessing 2-3% of the flights is a lot more common than the “once in a million” or “never” that most people guess. It’s usually spurious. It happens once or twice and that’s it.

So, there you have it! Remember to turn your phone on airplane mode the next time you are flying.

If you think others can benefit from learning about this distraction, please share!

Plenty of things can go wrong on a plane and not all of them dangerous. One passenger recently experienced their view being obstructed by someone’s yucky ponytail. Take of look at the video below and tell us what your least pleasant flying experience was!

H/T: Daily Mail

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