China's aviation authority has set the ball rolling for allowing the use of smartphones onboard aircraft. The authority has, however, left it on the individual airline companies to take the final call on whether they want to allow the use of portable electronic devices (PEDs) on flights.
The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) announced the fifth revision to government aviation regulations on Monday. The new regulations allow airlines to apply for permission for allowing passengers to use PEDs. At present, Chinese airlines do not permit use of PEDs during flights.
The CAAC has also developed an approval process to deal with applications from carriers and assess whether they have the technological capabilities for offering call-making facilities without hindering the pilot's navigation system.
Some of the international airlines have already begun offering WiFi services to passengers.
In China, the CAAC decision to change aviation rules was aimed at improving the safety with measures that include addressing airline crew members' risk of fatigue and their qualifications as well as improving management training. The new rule change also extends the age limit for pilots, reduced flight time for cabin crew members and new fuel policies.
All Chinese airlines will be required to implement the newly introduced changes by the end of 2019.
The existing rules bar passengers from switching on or operating PEDs including mobile phones, walkie-talkies and remote-control toys. Certain devices such as laptops cannot be used during take-off or landing, according to the existing regulations.
Source: Times of India (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/china/china-to-allow-use-of-sma...)