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Author Topic: wifi tether on airplane  (Read 4552 times)
CSSZiegler
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« on: March 29, 2011, 11:44:09 AM »

I know that many of the airlines offer wifi through Gogoinflight but my Droid2 has wifi tehter and was wondering if its possible it would work on the plane?
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MikeNYC
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« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2011, 12:06:11 PM »

For wifi tethering from your phone to work, you need cell service. First, you won't get cell service above a few thousand feet. Second, the cell phone function of your phone is required to be turned OFF during flight. Basically, it would be against the carrier and FAA rules to use your cell phone for tethering in flight. Even if it weren't against the rules, it won't work since you won't have service up at cruise altitude.
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CSSZiegler
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« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2011, 02:28:55 PM »

If that's the case, then why have a regulation against the usage of cell phone all together if it doesn't even work when you're off the ground? I can understand the regulation if it actually does work at that altitude but it doesn't so why have the regulation at all?
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StuSEL
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« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2011, 07:41:19 PM »

The regulation covers all electronic devices, not necessarily just cell phones.
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incebums
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« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2011, 09:37:20 PM »

If that's the case, then why have a regulation against the usage of cell phone all together if it doesn't even work when you're off the ground? I can understand the regulation if it actually does work at that altitude but it doesn't so why have the regulation at all?

Because no matter whether there are cell towers nearby (and at that altitude, obviously there aren't), your phone will try to communicate with them.
And because it won't get any answer from a cell tower, your phone will give maximum power to its antenna for communication in hopes of getting a connection and that's what makes it a problem.
It's not as much about having an established connection between your phone and a cell tower as it's about your phone transmitting as hard as it can in order to get one.
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