Airport News

Heathrow makes mobile phone history

Thu, 14 Aug, 2008

London Heathrow has claimed to be the first airport in the UK to have welcomed a flight that allowed passengers to use their mobile phone while on board.

The Emirates Boeing 777 flight from Dubai arrived in London last week.

According to Emirates, around 20 per cent of passengers had used their handsets on board, making around 30 calls.

The inflight mobile service is currently available on one in ten Emirates flights. Passengers can only use their phones once the aeroplane is above 23,000 feet.

Emirates spokesman Paul Brannelly said there were no complaints or incidents.

"The cabin noise level on airliners is such that you cannot hear people making phone calls and the call quality has been so good there has been no need to shout," he added.

Earlier this year, the European commission and regulator Ofcom gave the green light to carriers to develop inflight mobile phone systems.

Joe Evans

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