Most new aircraft will be able to meet the FAA's criteria, but it will depend on how quickly the airlines spend the money to fix up older planes that will determine how wide the new regulation reaches. And those bringing a connected device on a plane will have to remain on Airplane Mode under 10,000 feet which means no internet connections, texting, email or anything data related can be done on a device at that level. Those toting a laptop will have to stow it until the plane starts cruising at 10,000 feet.
Members of the traveling public appear to be satisfied by the FAA ruling. Over the last few years, it had become apparent that worries about electronic interference causing planes to plummet to earth were overblown. Many cellphone and tablet users reported that they "accidentally" left their device on during an entire flight and lived to tell the tale.
The issue of whether or not interference could down a jetliner became fodder for the media in 2011 when actor Alec Baldwin was kicked off a plane for refusing to turn off his iPhone in the middle of a Words With Friends game.
"We're pleased the FAA recognizes that an enjoyable passenger experience is not incompatible with safety and security."-Roger Dow, CEO, U.S. Travel Association