The FAA has determined that airlines can safely expand passenger use of Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs) during all phases of flight, and is immediately providing the airlines with guidance. Expanded use will not happen overnight. The process will vary among airlines, but the agency expects airlines to allow passengers to safely use their devices in airplane mode, gate-to-gate, by the end of 2013.

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The decision is based on input from the PED Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) which concluded that most commercial airplanes can tolerate radio interference signals from PEDs.

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The FAA is streamlining the approval of expanded PED use by giving airlines updated, clear guidance. These FAA tools will help assess the risks of potential PED-induced avionics problems for their airplanes and specific operations.

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The FAA is not considering the use of cell phones for voice communications during flight because Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations currently prohibit any airborne calls using cell phones.

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