wordpress blog stats
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

TRAI clears in-flight internet access and mobile connectivity

TRAI in-flight internet

Air travellers in India may soon have access to the internet and make calls from their mobile phones while flying. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on Friday recommended that in-flight connectivity — both Internet and MCA (mobile communication on aircraft) services — should be allowed over Indian airspace.

The decision will allow airlines to offer these services once they meet certain security norms. Internet access can be provided only when boarding is over and the aircraft is about to taxi. Mobile communication will be allowed when the aircraft has risen to about 3,000 metres in altitude. The 3000 metre minimum altitude restriction has been done to ensure “compatibility with terrestrial mobile networks”.

In October 2017, the TRAI had released a consultation paper calling for views from stake holders about whether or not in-flight connectivity should be allowed in India, and the government licensing framework for this.

According to the recommendation paper released by TRAI many stakeholders were of the view that “at present only Internet service should be considered because its demand is more than MCA service.” Stakeholders had raised concerns over the regulatory framework governing mobile telephony and issues such as interference, roaming, spectrum usage, quality of service would need to be addressed. The paper mentions that one stakeholder suggested that airlines were no longer installing MCA technologies as Internet data services, messaging applications and voice over internet protocol applications were fulfilling most of the in-flight mobile connectivity requirements.

Licensing and spectrum: TRAI has called creating a separate category licence called in-flight connectivity (IFC) service provider to provide connectivity for airlines registered in India. In its recommendations, the regulator said that to promote the concept of in-flight connectivity, these service providers should be charged a nominal license fee of Re 1 per annum, which could be changed later. TRAI also said the regulatory requirements should be the same for both Indian and foreign airlines.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Technology used: For enabling in-flight connectivity the TRAI said airlines will be allowed to use both satellite communications systems and Direct Air-To-Ground communication systems. For solutions based on satellite communications, TRAI suggests that global standards should be mandated. However, these standards would not be applicable to the solutions based on Air-To-Ground communication system since it will use the same standards that are used in terrestrial mobile communications.

Security issues: On the issue of monitoring/interception Internet traffic TRAI has suggested that a ground gateway in India can be used to “lawfully intercept and monitor the in-cabin internet traffic” while the aircraft is in Indian airspace. “Therefore, the onboard Internet traffic must be routed to a satellite gateway on Indian soil. Such an obligation should be imposed, regardless of whether the satellite in question is an Indian satellite system or not,” the report added.

Written By

Writes about consumer technology, social media, digital services and tech policy. Is a gadget freak, gamer and Star Wars nerd.

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

Views

News

When news that Walmart would soon accept cryptocurrency turned out to be fake, it also became a teachable moment.

News

The DSCI's guidelines are patient-centric and act as a data privacy roadmap for healthcare service providers.

News

In this excerpt from the book, the authors focus on personal data and autocracies. One in particular – Russia.  Autocracies always prioritize information control...

News

By Jai Vipra, Senior Resident Fellow at Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy The use of new technology, including facial recognition technology (FRT) by police...

News

By Stella Joseph, Prakhil Mishra, and Yash Desai The Government of India circulated proposed amendments to the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020 (“E-Commerce Rules”) which...

You May Also Like

News

Rajesh Kumar* doesn’t have many enemies in life. But, Uber, for which he drives a cab everyday, is starting to look like one, he...

News

By Aroon Deep and Aditya Chunduru You’re reading it here first: Twitter has complied with government requests to censor 52 tweets that mostly criticised...

Advert

135 job openings in over 60 companies are listed at our free Digital and Mobile Job Board: If you’re looking for a job, or...

News

Google has released a Google Travel Trends Report which states that branded budget hotel search queries grew 179% year over year (YOY) in India, in...

MediaNama is the premier source of information and analysis on Technology Policy in India. More about MediaNama, and contact information, here.

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ

Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Name:*
Your email address:*
*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ