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Flight mode soon a thing of the past

Airlines will in future be able to install the latest 5G technology on their airplanes to allow passengers to use smartphones and other appliances that need to be connected to the internet on flights. 

The European commission has modified legislation regarding mobile communication to take account of the latest standards.  The move opens the way for 5G coverage to be made available on aircraft in addition to older, existing standards.

“The sky is no longer the limit when we are talking about high-capacity super-fast connections” said European commissioner Thierry Breton.

5G coverage becomes possible by installing a so called picocell on planes.  Telephone conversations, text messages and data traffic can be sent to a mobile network on the ground via a satellite network using the picocell network station.

The commission also wants to release 5GHz frequencies for Wi-Fi use in cars, buses and other forms of transport. Belgium and other EU states have till 30 June next year to open up 5GHz bands to road transport users.

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