The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is seeking to invite applications from entities for providing in-flight connectivity services in October. A senior government official informed to PTI regarding this news. With in-flight connectivity, passengers would be able to make calls and browse the Internet during their flights in the Indian airspace. Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey said there was a long sitting with potential service providers, airlines and the DoT, following which a "certain road map" has been decided upon.
The matter would now be taken to the Committee of Secretaries (CoS) headed by the Cabinet Secretary, he added. Speaking at a press conference here, the secretary said the DoT had identified in-flight connectivity as a separate, standalone service requiring the licence from it.
"They (DoT) will be inviting applications for the services licence... in October," Choubey said. While mobile phone use would still be restricted during take-off and landing, the Telecom Department's highest decision-making body has approved the lifting of a ban on the use of mobile phones and Internet services at cruising altitudes.
Earlier this year, Telecom Commission has approved the proposal of In-Flight Connectivity (IFC) services within Indian airspace. It's unknown when airlines will start offering the service.