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'TRAI's recommendations on in-flight connectivity will favour consumers'

New Delhi [India], Jan 21: Lauding the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's (TRAI) approval on accessing mobile and internet services on flights, the Broadband India Forum (BIF) said it would be largely beneficial to mobile consumers, as it would expand broadband access.

"BIF believes that this will largely benefit air travellers in India and help garner additional revenues for the service providers. We welcome these recommendations by TRAI on in-flight connectivity and believe that this would be very beneficial to the consumers," said TV Ramachandran, President-Broadband India Forum.

"In-flight connectivity and access to the internet is available today in many parts of the world. More than 10,000 domestic and international flights go across India every day carrying more than 10 lakh travellers who will now have access to broadband connectivity. We urge the telecom department for an early acceptance and implementation of these recommendations in coordination with the Ministry of Civil Aviation," he added.

The TRAI on Friday gave green signal to access mobile and internet services onboard flight and recommended allowing mobile and internet services through both satellite and terrestrial network.

In its recommendation, the authority said the internet and mobile communication on aircraft service should be permitted as in-flight connectivity in the Indian airspace.

The move comes after the department of telecom had sought views of the TRAI in August last year over the proposal to introduce voice, data and video services over Indian airspace for domestic, international and overflying flights.

The authority also recommended that the operation of mobile communication on aircraft services should be permitted with a minimum height restriction of 3,000 meters, adding that internet services through Wi-Fi onboard be made available when electronic devices are permitted to be used only via in-flight or airplane modes. 

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