FAA may ease restrictions on some electronic devices

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- CBS News and the New York Times are reporting that early next year the FAA will ease restrictions on the use of some electronic devices by passengers on board aircraft while taxiing, taking off and landing.

"I think it's great," said Melinda Scroggin of Boise. I use a Kindle all the time. And I don't like to turn it off and wait to read."

The agency is under public and political pressure to ease the restrictions as more people use e-book readers, music and video players, smartphones and laptops. Use of electronic devices is prohibited when aircraft are below 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) because of concern they could create electromagnetic interference with critical aircraft systems. But evidence of the potential interference is murky.

Cellphone calls and Internet use and transmissions are also prohibited, and it's not expected those restrictions will be lifted. Using cellphones to make calls on planes is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission.

There is concern that making calls from fast-flying planes might cause technical difficulties with cellphone reception on the ground.
There is also the potential annoyance factor - whether passengers will be unhappy if they have to listen to other passengers yakking on the phone.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)