What is Airplane Mode?

Often I ask those sitting next to me on the plane, “What is Airplane Mode?” Then, since they never know, I follow up with, “Why do you think we have to do this on the plane?” Besides being an icebreaker this always get a laugh. And why? Because NO ONE KNOWS WHY WE DO AIRPLANE MODE.

For years I have pondered this, and been remiss in not checking further. It somehow escapes my To Do List, however, today is the day. So where does one go for information such as this?

Of course, the ultimate guru, Auntie Google, and here’s what she says.

What is Airplane Mode?

Airplane mode turns off cellular devices, (those being cell phones and personal computers), disabling all data connection on your device. This means you can do just about nothing on the phone or computer but look at pictures as it cuts off access to the outside world.

To access Airplane Mode on the cellular phone select the settings button, (which on my phone is the gray flower shaped icon for females, or the cog wheel shaped icon for men). In my u- tube review it was stated that some phones have this on a screen you pull down when pressing the top middle part of the screen. Oh, look, I do too! It was simply further down the screen.

Airplane mode has several different names:

  • Aeroplane Mode
  • Flight Mode
  • Off line Mode
  • Stand Alone Mode

Next Question: Why do we have to put our devices on Airplane Mode?

Phone noise annoys some pilots and air traffic controllers. Out of safety and respect the device should be placed on this mode.

Also, regulations in many countries prohibit the use of devices that transmit signals on commercial aircraft. Why? This type of communication could interfere with plane sensors and navigation equipment.

What happens if we don’t put our cell phones on Airplane Mode?

Here I breathed a sigh of relief as I never put my phone on Airplane Mode. Why? I never knew where to find this and since I rarely receive phone calls thought it not an issue. However, I will now be faithful as I don’t want to annoy the pilot or air traffic controllers.

But the best thing I learned in my quest is:

The plane won’t fall out of the sky if you aren’t on Airplane Mode.

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