Europe Gives Go-ahead for 3G and 4G Use On Planes

Europe's Aviation Safety Agency just this week announced plans to allow the use of personal electronic devices during all stages of flight. Now, the European Commission has said it will allow the use of spectrum for 3G and 4G during flights.

This is separate from the EASA's plans to issue guidance on the use of electronic devices during take off and landing by the end of the month. Europe says that in response to passenger demand, airlines will now be allowed to develop and deploy in-flight Internet services. Though it's up to the airline which services they offer, the EC says email and text are what the people want. The airlines will be using the 2100 MHz band for UMTS/3G and the 1800 MHz band for LTE/4G.

In-flight WiFi is something US flights have had for the last couple of years. If EU airlines decide to offer 3G and 4G broadband services, European travelers will finally be able to access email, social networks and surf the web once planes hit 3,000 feet. 

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  • So Europeans are demanding what Americans have been enjoying for over 2 years now.
    I'm wondering why it had to be the travelers who demanded it and not the companies who adopted these services.
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  • At first I thought this was allowing passengers to use their phone's mobile data in-flight. I didn't realize that the EU hadn't implemented in-flight wifi before.
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