Browse internet, make calls while in the air: Govt clears proposal

Telecom Commission today approved a proposal for allowing mobile phone calls and Internet services in domestic and international flights in India, with certain riders, an official said.

The high-powered inter-ministerial Telecom Commission, headed by Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan, approved the move which will allow you to use your smartphone once the aircraft achieves a height of 3,000 meters.

The Telecom Commission —the highest decision making body of telecom department — also approved regulator TRAI’s recommendations on Internet telephony in its meeting here today.

“The services can be rolled out over the next 3-4 months as arrangements will need to be made between telecom companies, airlines and other intermediaries involved in the process,” Sundararajan said.

The measure was earlier approved by telecom regulator Trai.

It is expected that consumers will need to pay additional tariffs for availing in-flight connectivity, though telcos may gradually throw-in bundled packages to attract frequent fliers.

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