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Comment Period Extended for Cell Phone Use on Aircraft NPRM

The FCC has extended the deadline to file comments regarding the commission's ban on airborne use of cellular handsets and other wireless devices. The comment period originally set to end April 11 has been extended to May 26, 2005.

The extension was in response to several requests, according to the FCC. Boeing asked for more time to use testing to verify the operation of a dual-technology (CDMA2000 and GSM) pico-cell network both on the ground and in the air and to demonstrate how the pico-cell system could limit potential interference to terrestrial wireless networks. Telenor and ARINC asked for an extension to complete airborne testing of a pico-cell solution to measure performance, reliability, emissions and effect on terrestrial systems. The U.S. Department of Justice, including the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, requested additional time to respond to "the important regulatory, technical/operational, and public safety/national security issues raised in this proceeding."

Refer to the Order (DA 05-1015) for details. Comments may be viewed by using the FCC's Search for Filed Comments web page. Enter "04-435" in the first box (Proceeding) to view comments in this proceeding. When I checked Sunday, a total of 4,763 comments had been posted, many from individuals opposing the use of cell phones on aircraft.