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Air France to Flight-test Mobile Phone Use

Here’s your chance to see whether you really think listening to someone speak French is romantic. Air France will begin an in-flight mobile phone use test on its Airbus A318 planes in July. That’s a rather small plane, so the testing won’t be a large-scale sampling. Also, the length of flight will be rather short, so there’s little chance of the in-flight phone users to run out of battery.

Actually, the first phase of the test would be rather quiet, since voice conversations won’t be allowed until October. But they’ll get there in the end, those French airline officials, who seem to be bowing to the inevitable despite what’s going on in the U.S. on this front. That first phase will enable airline passengers to receive and send email and text messages. That would seem to be OK, until you’re sitting next to someone who has their “You have an SMS” ringtone cranked up to maximum volume.

A questionnaire will accompany each test.

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