The domestic passengers will soon be able to make phone calls and access the internet on their phone during their flights and ship voyage within the Indian-airspace and waters as the government notifies the rules for providing the said services.
Indian and foreign airlines and shipping companies operating in the country can provide in-flight and maritime voice and data services in partnership with a valid Indian telecom licence holder.
The in-flight and maritime connectivity (IFMC) can be provided by a valid telecom licence holder in India through domestic and foreign satellites having the permission of the Department of Space.
In case of using satellite system for providing IFMC, the telegraph message shall be passed through the satellite gateway earth station located within India and such satellite gateway earth stations shall be interconnected with the NLD (national long distance) or access service or ISP licensee’s network for further delivery of service.
The IFMC services will be activated once the aircraft attains a minimum height of 3,000 metres in Indian airspace to avoid interference with terrestrial mobile networks.
The IFMC licences will be granted against an annual fee of Re 1 for a period of 10 years and the permit holder will have to pay licence fees and spectrum charges based on revenue earned from providing services.