How often have you used a cell phone in the air?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Piper18O, Apr 25, 2021.

?

Have you used a cell phone while flying?

  1. Yes, I do it all the time

  2. Yes, but only if it is an absolute necessity.

  3. No, I wait until I am on the ground.

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  1. Piper18O

    Piper18O Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Is this common? Is it a problem? I am really curious what peoples thoughts are on cell phone usage while in the air and if you have used it, is it very often successful, especially at what altitudes.
     
  2. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach Gone West

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    No big issue if you are low enough and near enough to a populated area to have coverage. Bluetooth on your headset or audio panel makes a big difference. I never initiate calls when I am in the air, but have taken a few over the years - although most of the time my phone is off when I'm airborne. And I prefer it that way.
     
  3. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    I don't have any service it seems once I'm above 4000 ft so I just leave the thing in airplane mode to save the battery. But I do use it plenty for pictures!

    PXL_20210402_200248201~2.jpg
     
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  4. Piper18O

    Piper18O Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I am more like Tantalum and like to switch to airplane mode while flying and only use for taking pictures. I have, however forgotten to switch to airplane mode and have received calls through my Bluetooth headset while in the air that I have taken. I mean, what are you going to do?
     
  5. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

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    I've texted people at my destination with my ETA. That's about the extent of it. Usually I compose the text while in cruise when there isn't much going on and then hit "send" at the appointed time.
     
  6. Cykoguy

    Cykoguy Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I haven't been PIC in a three years but when flying with others I use it intermittently on almost every flight. Earlier this year I live tweeted a flight
     
  7. Piper18O

    Piper18O Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I forgot about the time I was in the air and realized my IFD 100 ap had not updated the database, so it wouldn't sync to my IFD 440. I turned on the cell data and managed to connect to a tower and download the current nav data so I could sync the two together. I didn't think it would work as I was above 6000 ft. So I guess I did do it once for increased safety on a flight.
     
  8. RussR

    RussR Pattern Altitude

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    I haven't taken or made many calls in flight, maybe once, but that seems so unreliable as to not be worth the bother. I definitely use it on the ground to get IFR clearances while waiting at the end of the runway.

    I do send texts regularly, though, typically stuff like ETA updates. However, these will usually just sit there unsent for a while until a cell tower just happens to get in range. I'll usually put the phone up next to the window to hopefully help it with that.

    And of course pictures, yes.
     
  9. sarangan

    sarangan Cleared for Takeoff

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    I have sent txt messages from the air, but I am not sure if they got picked up by the towers right away or not.
     
  10. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Once when climbing out of Albuquerque my cell phone rang. I answered it and it was my mom. During our conversation the tower switched me over to center, and I responded.

    Mom asked me what I was doing, and I told her I was flying back to Gallup.

    She told me to call her when I land and hung up...:lol::lol:

    The sat phone was easier when flying. It went through the headsets. Once I answered the sat phone with, ''Thank you for calling 8840K. I am unable to answer your call right now so please leave your name and number and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.'' It was our dispatcher and he came back with, ''This is Tim, I need to change your destination to Window Rock for a pickup to Phoenix. Call me when you can....''

    The things a pilot does when flying after midnight and bored....

    I did respond and get the necessary information.
     
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  11. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I often get texts while flying...
    Usually:
    "Verizon Wireless
    Welcome to Canada. As talk, text, and data is included..."
    Last Sunday I got that text while over Toledo forking Ohio. 25 or 30 nautical miles from the nearest dry land in Canada.
     
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  12. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I will send (and read) texts while in the air. But sometimes they don't actually go (or come in) until I am in the vicinity of a tower. Often that is right after takeoff or right before, or after landing.
     
  13. EdFred

    EdFred Taxi to Parking

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    I've gotten a few calls while in the air. Former student's in-laws live under the traffic pattern, and it will be "Hey is that you?" "Yeah" "Thought so, stop by." "K." Placed one call while flying with a buddy. Turned out to be a small world story and ended up calling my mom to tell her about it while we were low over Lake Michigan about a mile offshore.
     
  14. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    I haven't used the cell phone for voice while flying, but plenty of times for texts and data.
     
  15. DaleB

    DaleB Final Approach

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    I'll occasionally send a text while flying. The new radio (GTR 200B) had Bluetooth, which makes it super nice for making the occasional call on the ground or during the first or last few minutes of a flight. The rest of the time is mostly out of range of the towers way down below where the tiny little ant people are. :)
     
  16. jordane93

    jordane93 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I’ve gotten service around 10K once.
     
  17. SixPapaCharlie

    SixPapaCharlie May the force be with you

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    Just yesterday I bought an extended car warranty while in flight.
    The guy had been trying to reach me it seems forever.
     
  18. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Administrator Management Council Member

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    I use it extensively, mainly SMS/Hangouts. I will usually send a message and toss the phone up on the glareshield. It gets out eventually. I can't count on realtime or voice, I'm usually around 10,000'.

    It's nice to give updates to people at the destination, or warn my dad if I reroute, so he doesn't freak out. He has a flightradar account just to stalk me. :D

    I tried to attend a zoom meeting from the air. It did not go well.
     
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  19. ChemGuy

    ChemGuy Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yes I do it all the time...but only when I can get service.

    BT the phone to headset and listen to music or make a call. Not while landing.
     
  20. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    In my experience that depends on how far away from civilization you are.
     
  21. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    You should have asked if you could buy an extended warranty on your airplane! ;)
     
  22. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    I get the same for Mexico as I'm on the border. Verizon attempted to increase my fees for "international calling" off of one of these events (happens in the car too). I had to talk to a manager to get Mexico and international permanently blocked as they were always trying to sneak that fee into the statement.
     
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  23. TimRF79

    TimRF79 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I often use it in the air when I am not PIC,
    as PIC there is less use, but for times when my iPad dies, the phone is a back-up.
    I think with a GTN750 now, I will see even less use of my iDevices
     
  24. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    Am guessing no one is using the open-close flight plan feature by text with WXBrief?
     
  25. NealRomeoGolf

    NealRomeoGolf En-Route

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    I'll text but don't call.
     
  26. Todd82

    Todd82 Line Up and Wait

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    You get it on the ground at Kelley's island too
     
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  27. 455 Bravo Uniform

    455 Bravo Uniform En-Route

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    I use flying as the best excuse for not taking calls.
     
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  28. TimRF79

    TimRF79 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The what?
     
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  29. wilkersk

    wilkersk Pattern Altitude

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  30. Geosync

    Geosync Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I text all the time during cruise if I'm low enough for service, since It's a work phone, and I fly for work. So still on the clock, even in the air.
     
  31. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    Avare, Google Maps, Aviation Weather, but never a phone call or a text.
    I fly to get away from calls and texts.
     
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  32. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The applicability of 47 CFR 22.925 is defined by 47 CFR 47.900. Based on that and on 47 CFR 22.905, it appears to be limited to the bands in the range of 824 MHz to 894 MHz.

    https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-i...555613614ca&mc=true&node=sp47.2.22.h&rgn=div6

    I've heard that mobile phones that use other bands don't have a similar prohibition, but I haven't tracked down the applicable regulations to confirm this.
     
  33. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

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    That would be LTE bands 5, 18, 19 and 26.

    Sprint uses band 26. US Cellular, at&t, T-Mobile and Verizon use band 5. I think if you're using a cellphone in the US, you can't get around it.
     
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  34. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Once. I was going to visit a friend at a private dirt airstrip in the mountains. I had a gear problem. I called him from pattern altitude to let him know we were returning home.
     
  35. Sinistar

    Sinistar En-Route

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    Does answering this [potentially] incriminate?
     
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  36. RudyP

    RudyP Cleared for Takeoff

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    A downside of upgrading to a jet from the Cirrus is that I used to be able to send/receive the odd text if need be while flying but now other than the first few min after takeoff or before landing, it’s a no go.

    I need gogo...
     
  37. NoHeat

    NoHeat En-Route

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    Progress!

    It took 29 posts before this showed up, and eve then it looks like it’s in jest. That’s progress, because 13 years ago when I joined PoA the forum was full of serious scolding posts about the illegality of using a phone in flight. Now nobody cares.

    I like to phone an airport’s weather recording while in flight. With Bluetooth, I hear it in my headset, nice and clear, long before I’m in radio range. It’s less stale than ADSB reports, which can be an hour old.
     
  38. wilkersk

    wilkersk Pattern Altitude

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    Just don't ask me to tell you about the boating accident I had in which I lost every one of my EBRs. Then, I'd have to get serious! ;);):D
     
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  39. Deelee

    Deelee Cleared for Takeoff

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    I forget.... are we allowed to use cell phones during flight to make calls/texts? If not, then no, I have never ever called and/or sent texts.
     
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  40. Piper18O

    Piper18O Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You lost every one of your Established Business Relationships in a Boating accident? How awful!