Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

Summary: Sick of having to put away your electronic devices while taxiing before takeoff? You're definitely not alone.

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TOPICS: Mobility, Wi-Fi
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Many Americans are siding with Alec Baldwin on at least one issue: not wanting to put away mobile devices while on the runway before takeoff.

New research from Poll Position reports that 70 percent of people between the ages 18 and 29 (a.k.a. "millennials") replied that you should be allowed to play electronic games while on the runway.

Within that same demographic, just less than a quarter (24 percent) said that you should not while just 6 percent had no opinion.

By contrast, 56 percent of respondents aged 65 and over think that you should not be allowed to play electronic games on a plane while awaiting take-off. Results differed further as 21 percent in this age group said that you should be able to play electronic games on the runway, and 23 percent did not have an opinion

For reference, these results are based on responses from 1,356 registered voters nationwide, and the survey was conducted by telephone on December 11.

Although reasoning for these responses were not provided by Poll Position, these numbers could be explained by the fact that the airlines hasn't done a decent job explaining as to why we can't use electronic devices before takeoff.

While seeing someone fidgeting with an electronic device might seem disconcerting to some, there hasn't been any conclusive evidence tying the use of mobile devices at any point while on an aircraft (takeoff, mid-air, landing, etc.) to a plane crash.

Air travel is already stressful enough these days with fees popping up left and right, long lines at security checkpoints, and long delays on tarmacs sometimes, among other issues. While we should respect and follow the instructions of the flight crew, some of these regulations are becoming to seem a bit draconian.

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Topics: Mobility, Wi-Fi

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7 comments
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  • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

    The Mythbusters explored this issue, even bringing equipment that could generate massively greater amounts of radio signals than a plane full of cellphones onto a rented jet (that taxied around the runway). There was no effect whatsoever on the plane's instruments, which even the pilot expected would be the result, because as he pointed out to the Mythbusters, all of the wiring on the plane is shielded from electrical interference.
    There's no scientific reason to have this policy in place.
    jgm@...
    • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

      @jgm@...
      There is no actual shielding on most wiring in planes. The only shielding you may get maybe some aluminum wall or bulkhead between you and the wiring. Shielding adds weight and impedes maintenance.

      There was one plane (trying to remember if it was the DC 10) that used DC levels for signals. There were filters in line in several places to filter out AC and RF thus insuring that only DC levels were present.

      For me the jury is still out as most commercial devices are built as cheaply as possible and may not have the electrical quality that avionics are built to.
      wingnut1024
      • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

        @wingnut1024

        From Discovery Channel:

        -----------
        MYTH: CAN YOUR CELL PHONE INTERFERE WITH A PLANE'S INSTRUMENTS?

        Airplane instruments

        Finding: BUSTED

        Explanation: Never mind what the chatterbox in the seat next to you says about cell phones messing with plane navigation -- those metallic birds are built airtight against foreign signals and operate on entirely different frequencies than cell phones.

        So why all the fuss about phones? When you make a call at 10,000 feet, the signal bounces off multiple available cell towers, rather than one at a time. That means too many phone-happy jetsetters might clog up the networks on the ground, which is why the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ??? not the Federal Aviation Association (FAA) ??? banned cell use on planes.

        If you're just dying to bust out your BlackBerry mid-flight, go international. Some airlines in Europe, the Middle East and Asia now allow cell phone use in planes, but don't hold your breath for the FCC to follow suit.
        ------

        Also:
        -----
        They switched to a real plane, a Hawker 800XP provided by Tom Benvenuto, VP Flight Operations, Sunset Aviation. The 800XP is a plush 8-person corporate jet filled with top-of-the-line LCD electronics. Benvenuto made the point that the electronics on the aircraft were very well-shielded, so it should be much more resistant to interference than the MythBusters mock cockpit. Even though they couldn't fly the plane while testing due to legal issues, they were able to test with the plane on the ground.
        Grant started off with the 800Mhz signal that caused problems in the Faraday cage test. There was no interference with the 800Mhz signal or any other signal they tested.

        busted The final explanation is that, even though the airplanes appear to be well-shielded against cellphone interference, there are so many different electronics in a cockpit, as well as so many different cellphones constantly coming out, the FAA doesn't want to do the necessary testing.
        -----------------
        jgm@...
      • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

        @wingnut1024 "There is no actual shielding on most wiring in planes. The only shielding you may get maybe some aluminum wall or bulkhead between you and the wiring. Shielding adds weight and impedes maintenance. "

        It also protects your vital electronic instrumentation from outside interference. :-)
        jgm@...
    • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

      @jgm@... <br>Actually there are people who think that money IS a science, but that's not really relevant here...<br><br>Money is the major reason for this, as airplane certification testing is an extremely pricey endeavour - and can take years. If, say, Garmin wants to supply a new, updated GPS - even with relatively minor updates, it needs to be tested in all scenarios the FAA can dream up before approval is won.<br><br>There are far too many devices to test - they change faster than the testing procedures could complete - and NO-ONE would step up to pay for those tests anyway. Thus - it's easier to ban them. Knowing that the REQUIRED and DEMONSTRATED resistance of existing devices to outside electrical signals actually DOES mean no hazard really exists, the ban has been modified to include only the most critical phases of flight, takeoffs and landings. Only for CYA purposes, but nobody's about to expose themselves to even the slightest chance of being deemed as contributing to a crash - as that's even MORE money! Understandable enough when you think of it...


      (edited for missing words from typing too fast)
      Freebird54
  • It's NOT an electronics issue.

    Takeoffs and landings are the most dangerous part of a flight.

    Passengers who are asleep, engrossed in a game or other activity (even paperwork) become a liability if anything goes wrong.
    Uncle Stoat
    • RE: Most millennials in favor of electronic games while on the runway (survey)

      @Uncle Stoat Maybe in North Korea passengers are required to flap their arms vigorously to help get the aircraft off the ground, but I don't believe anywhere else makes takeoff or landing a participatory activity. Are passengers doing paperwork supposed to be gazing out the window at the wing looking for gremlins like the old Twilight Zone episode?

      Uncle Stoat, this is a completely ad-hoc explanation you've made up. The ban isn't on not paying attention (to... what?), it's about the use of electronic devices. Per your own example, the individual doing paperwork would be just as dangerous, but their activity is not banned, disproving your own ad-hoc theory from the get-go.
      jgm@...