FCC Chairman Would Like to Use Gadgets During Takeoff, Landing

Published on December 7, 2012
by John Paczkowski

Ever wonder why you have to turn off your electronic devices before a plane takes off and lands? So does Federal Communications Commission chairman Julius Genachowski. And he’d like the Federal Aviation Administration to relax its restrictions on the use of gadgets in-flight.

In a letter to the FAA Thursday, Genachowski urged the agency to “enable greater use of tablets, e-readers, and other portable devices” during flights. The FAA currently prohibits airline passengers from using electronic devices at takeoff and landing, presumably to ensure passengers are alert and paying attention during the most dangerous portions of the flight. The agency is currently reviewing the merits of that restriction and evidently Genachowski feels that doing away with it would be a wise move.

“This review comes at a time of tremendous innovation, as mobile devices are increasingly interwoven in our daily lives,” Genachowski wrote. “They empower people to stay informed and connected with friends and family, and they enable both large and small businesses to be more productive and efficient, helping drive economic growth and boost U.S. competitiveness.”

Who knows? Maybe that extra 20 minutes of in-flight gadget use will result in a massive boost in productivity.

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