FAA to test e-readers and iPads!!
By Elaine N. Schoch
The Federal Aviation Administration has decided to take a “fresh look” at the use of personal electronics on planes. In other words, they’re going to test e-readers and iPads to see if they’re safe for passengers to use them during taxing and takeoff. The last time this testing was done was 2006, long before iPads and most e-readers existed. The F.A.A. is not going to test the 150 million smartphones in this revision…
According to a New York Times article, Abby Lunardini, vice president of corporate communications at Virgin America, explained that the current guidelines require that an airline must test each version of a single device before it can be approved by the F.A.A. For example, if the airline wanted to get approval for the iPad, it would have to test the first iPad, iPad 2 and the new iPad, each on a separate flight, with no passengers on the plane. It would have to do the same for every version of the Kindle. It would have to do it for every different model of plane in its fleet. And American, JetBlue, United, Air Wisconsin, etc., would have to do the same thing. (No wonder the F.A.A. is keeping smartphones off the table since there are easily several hundred different models on the market.)
While it’s not a done deal just yet, it’s exciting to know we could skip the magazine stand next year and actually read the books or magazines we have on the iPad.