When you fly on an aeroplane, you get told to turn off and stow portable electronics, but is this really necessary? Sometimes I leave my phone on during take off on purpose by accident and nothing ever happens. Is this rule B.S. or is there really something to it? Sincerely, Flummoxed Flyer
The quick answer is no, electronic devices do not pose a problem so long as everything is going smoothly on the flight. It’s when there are issues that your electronic devices can potentially make things worse. Regulation states that various electronic devices can cause interference with the plane and therefore need to be turned off for the safety of everybody onboard. But as you’ve probably noticed, your iPod and Kindle alone are not going to interfere with the plane’s navigation and communication systems. The potential problem is the combined interference of many devices. In some cases this is pretty much B.S. and in some cases it isn’t. Here’s why.
Your Electronics Can (Technically) Interfere With the Planes…
http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2011/08/how-to-pin-a-program-to-the-taskbar-or-dock/…But That Risk Is Really Low…
So is there actually a problem? No, not really, but it all comes down to an emergency precautions. As take off and landing account for half of flying accidents (PDF), it’s important to have emergency communications available. Some of the aircraft emergency frequencies are in the lower range, which is a range more susceptible to interference. While the plane is shielded from interference, you have to ask yourself this: if your pilot needs to communicate on these lower frequencies in the event of an emergency, do you want to risk the chance of RFI?
…and You Should Just Deal With It
Ultimately this risk appears to be very low and you have very little to worry about, but as comedian Louis C.K. notes, you’re flying through the sky in a chair. That’s pretty awesome. In the near-ish future we’ll have better technology in most aircrafts and we’ll tell our grandchildren about the arduous ten minutes of flight in which we could read on our Kindles (to which they’ll ask, “What’s a Kindle?”). While it’s barely an issue right now, it’s not one you may want to risk, and your time without electronics is just a blip during one day of your life. Let it go and take the time to enjoy a quiet moment with your thoughts while flying through the sky in a chair.
Republished from Lifehacker