From: z1 on
OK so they will not allow chat
but just think about all the ringtones when using text ?


Qantas and Jetstar say no to mobile chat

* By Briana Domjen
* From: The Sunday Telegraph
* August 01, 2010 12:00AM

* Airlines say calls will irritate passengers
* ACMA approves phone-use technology
* But in-flight calls rates would be high

QANTAS and Jetstar are refusing to allow passengers to speak on mobile
phones during flights despite the Australian Communications and Media
Authority saying the practice has no effect on aircraft navigation

The ACMA - the watchdog for communications - finalised new licensing
rules on Friday allowing mobile phones to be operated on planes with the
installation of new technology.

The Sunday Telegraph can reveal that Virgin Blue's V Australia and
Emirates will go ahead and allow passengers to speak on mobile phones
in-flight but Jetstar, Qantas and Virgin Blue will not install the new
technology, saying it will irritate their passengers.

Jetstar spokesman Simon Westaway said using mobile phones on planes
would be convenient for some passengers but would prove a disturbance
for many others.

"If you're in an aircraft for a minimum of a couple of hours and have
someone chatting away next to you, that's very different from sitting
next to someone on a train or bus and having a quick five-minute chat,"
Mr Westaway said.

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2010 Ski Season

"We haven't done enough research within our customer base to see if it's
something our customers will want or whether they'll want to pay for it.

"It's important to remember that while the technology may be available,
the cost will not be low, because rates will be at an international rate."

The ACMA approved the new technology with which an airline-installed
on-board system relays mobile signals.

A spokesman for the authority, Donald Robertson, said a jammer prevented
mobile phones from interfering with cockpit operations. A base station
on the aircraft transmits the phone signal first to a satellite and then
to the ground network.

"We basically put in place the radio communications licensing
arrangements that will enable airlines to offer mobile services on
aircraft," Mr Robertson said.

"It's up to the airlines whether they want to put in the system that
will enable that to happen. It will be up to them whether they offer
voice calls or text services."

Mr Robertson said the call charges would be similar to global roaming rates.

Qantas was the first airline in the world to trial the in-flight
connectivity technology in 2007 but it has decided it will not adopt the
feature now that the ACMA has approved it.

"We continue to talk to our customers about what type of technology they
would like to see in use on flights domestically" a Qantas spokesman said.

Virgin Blue also has no plans to allow mobile phones on domestic
flights, but its international arm, V Australia, will allow the
technology to be used - initially for text messages, emails and social
networking sites - in coming months.

Virgin Blue spokesman Colin Lippiatt said the company would monitor the
operation of the new services before making a decision on allowing phone
calls, which he admitted could irritate some passengers.

"V Australia has the technology and would like to offer it to our
customers," he said.

"It's a very convenient way of using SMS, email and data services
in-flight without the fuss of swiping a credit card.

"There may be a time in the future when we do offer limited voice services."