FAA to Relax Electronics Restrictions

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Passengers frustrated that they can't continue using their electronic devices during take-offs and landings can take heart. It looks like the Federal Aviation Administration could relax those rules as early as next year. An advisory panel is expected to release its policy recommendations by the end of the month, and several of the panel's members say the new guidelines will likely allow for reading on tablets, listening to previously downloaded podcasts, and watching videos, but the ban on making phone calls, text messaging, emailing, or using Wi-Fi will likely stay in place. The panel's goal is to have a single policy for all airlines and all airplanes, according to those involved in the deliberations. Airlines will have to certify that their aircraft can handle whatever interference results from the use of electronic devices.