A few days ago we published the news that on-air phone usage is very likely to become a reality in 2006 and the services have great commercial potential for the airlines and service providers. However, there seems to be trouble in the air as the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) sees many technical hurdles in making this a reality and may impose very strict regulations before the service can go live.
Existing rules are not going be changed by the FAA. The onus of research and development along with a high level of testing is going to lie with each air carrier and the airline would need to provide substantial proof that mobile phones will not create an interference with the aviation equipment before they can launch the service commercially. The FAA thinks that the increasing complexity of both mobile phone technologies and aviation technologies might make it difficult to arrive at a common ground where interference is not a threat.
Only if the FAA was more like the FDA, a few kickbacks from some top mobile carriers and people would be talking in the air before you could say Vioxx.
Other minor reasons for discouraging the in-flight phone calls is the fact that it might become a nuisance to fellow passengers as well distract fellow crew members while performing their duties. To be honest, it would be quite irritating to sit next to a fellow passenger who is talking to his stock broker through out the flight, all I wanna do is get some damn sleep!