You may not have to switch off that iPad during takeoff much longer. Last year, the FAA established an industry group to look into the effects of in-flight gadget use; by the end of 2013, officials are hoping to announce a more easygoing approach to electronic devices like e-readers. Instead of being told to shut off devices, we may be told to put them on "airplane mode," the New York Times reports. The investigative group, which includes reps for airline and electronics companies, intends to release a report by July 31.
People from politicians to pilots have called on the FAA to revise its rules. Sen. Claire McCaskill, who is planning legislation on the matter, said she was particularly annoyed when she found out pilots themselves use iPads in the cockpit. "The idea that in-flight use of electronic devices for things like reading a book poses a threat to the safety of airline passengers is baseless and outdated," she said. "A flying copy of War and Peace is more dangerous than a Kindle." Phones, however, look set to remain banned. (Read more consumer electronics stories.)