FCC nixes proposal that would’ve allowed cellphone calls on planes

The Federal Communications Commission doesn’t want to hear you gabbing on your smartphone while on commercial flights. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai wants some quiet time while hurtling through the air in a metal tube, and he thinks the majority of America likely agrees, so today he sent out an order ending the proceeding begun in 2013 that would see rules around cellphone use in-air relaxed.

To be clear, this isn’t about using your mobile devices while in the sky – it’s strictly about talking on them during phone or VOIP calls while you’re flying. Here’s Pai’s (fairly personal) official statement on the matter:

I stand with airline pilots, flight attendants, and America’s flying public against the FCC’s ill-conceived 2013 plan to allow people to make cellphone calls on planes.  I do not believe that moving forward with this plan is in the public interest.  Taking it off the table permanently will be a victory for Americans across the country who, like me, value a moment of quiet at 30,000 feet.

Pai’s leadership of the FCC hasn’t exactly been without controversy in terms of policy decisions, but this seems like one that everyone can get behind – opinion on the matter can’t have changed much since the proposal was first introduced.