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Virgin Atlantic to Allow Cell Phone Calls

Virgin Atlantic Introduces In-Flight Calls — Uh-Oh?

The sweet sound of silence may be departing the friendly skies now that Virgin Atlantic has announced that in-flight mobile calls will come to at least 10 of the airline's routes by the end of this year. Even though Virgin has multiple US destinations, American law dictates cell service must be turned off within 250 miles of US airspace.

A company called AeroMobile will provide the in-flight cell access, which is only available for a limited bandwidth, meaning only a few lines can be accessed per flight. Virgin isn't the first airline to offer the power of mobile calls while en route to a destination: Qantas, Emirates, and Lufthansa also have AeroMobile on board.

With four airlines now offering passengers the opportunity to make calls in the air, is this the sign of an industry trend? How would you like an airplane full of telephone conversations on your next cross-country flight?

Photo Courtesy: Virgin Atlantic

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aylee aylee 3 years
I at first was concerned about people being on the phone too long disrupting other passengers.  My husband likes to read and I like to sleep in flight so obviously we like peace and quiet.  However, if the rate of in-flight calls is as expensive as roaming rate, I think my concern wouldn't be such a big problem.
Akasha Akasha 3 years
I don't have a problem with someone needing to make an emergency call on board, but lets face it it's going to be a bunch of rude, ignorant, idiots having inane, insipid conversations that nobody really needs or wants to listen to.   I base this semi-hostile comment on the fact that I just got off of a plane with the biggest idiot ever.   Until the flight attendant forced her to shut it off and the second the plane touched down the girl sitting next to me was having a conversation with what I can only imagine was her less smart friend.   The conversation was about her boyfriend buying her a 2.5 carat engagement ring, and didn't he know she was worth more, and she should just break up with him because under 5 carats is unacceptable.  On the other hand he was super nice and until he gave her the tiny little chip he had treated her very well.   If I had had to listen to her the entire 5 hour flight I might have punched her in the face.  
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