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30 November 2009

Passenger Electronic Devices Survey Results

Earlier this month, an article on free wireless Internet access in airplanes and airport terminals included a survey on suggested guidelines for use of personal electronic devices in airplanes and airports. A survey in the article asked several questions, and 35 members of the audience were kind enough to respond.

Using Electronics in the Sky

Not surprisingly, all but three of those responding have carried electronic devices on aircraft, with 26 reporting using a cell phone and an equal number admitting to carrying laptops or iPod type devices.

Most Think Guidelines Appropriate
One question was whether the suggested guidelines, which included using headphones, not displaying inappropriate images, and no cell phones in flight were appropriate. Of the 35 respondents, 23 thought they went far enough, four thought they didn't go far enough, and two thought they went too far. Six others were not sure.

Cell Phones in the Air Not a Popular Idea

The possibility of cell phone use in the sky brought out some strong opinions, with 11 checking the 'No' box and another 11 checking the 'Hell No' box. Coincidentally, 11 others checked the 'Yes' box.

Original Survey Questions and Choices
1. Do you think that these guidelines go far enough? (Yes, No, Not Sure, Other)
2. Have you traveled with a personal electronic device? (Yes, No)
- If you answered yes, what kind of device? (Cell phone, Laptop, iPod type device, game player, PDA, other)
3. Do you think that in flight phone calls should be allowed? (Yes, No, Hell No, Not Sure)

Other Comments
Perhaps the most interesting part of the survey was the variety of comments that were sent in. They have been included below with only slight editing for spelling and grammar:

- I think it depends on the circumstances. It's a hard one, because too much regulation is not good and not enough (regulation) leads to unhappy passengers which you really don't want in an enclosed space 32,000 feet in the air.

- I think that we have a right to view, read or whatever we want to do and for the phone call thing, what is the difference between talking on the phone or to another person on the plane? Get real!

- (Unless) it is an emergency written correspondence only

- In the old days they had a smoking section why not sections that allow certain things or even an internet cafe area.

- In-Flight content should not be limited.

- Life is evolution, and we must establish rules and education on behavior.

- The problem of one person's freedom running into other people's freedom from objectionable material already exists. You don't need WiFi to use your laptop or iPod on the plane.

- Too many already violate the law and confiscation of the devices is a must!

- Socks should be provided for mouths to passengers who insist on talking really loud on early morning and late night flights. And isolation booth for crying children like they used to have in churches would be a great idea.

Photo: gregoryjameswalsh


  1. Thank you for using my comment Dr. Curtis, you Rock! I would love to share a seat with you, but I bet you never fly coach!

  2. i went on a trip to california for thanksgiving this year. i have a gps, and it affected my speedometer. i think that a plane full of computers, and ipods would probably affect some of the more important instruments aboard most commercial aircraft.

  3. Good post. I am a new visitor of your blog and appreciate you taking the time to maintain the nice site. I’ll be a frequent visitor for a really long time.
    Questions on a Survey