American gets cleared for expanded in-flight gadget use

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved American Airlines for expanded in-flight electronic use, making American the third major U.S. airline to be able to allow passengers to keep their devices on.

The FAA announced last week that it was clearing the way for airlines to allow their passengers to keep their electronics on from "gate to gate," but airlines had to prove first that their airplane fleets were able to operate safety with the devices.

American said it would be able to allow its passengers to keep their electronics on beginning on Monday afternoon.

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"We're delighted that our customers are now able to use their handheld portable electronic devices gate to gate," American Senior Vice President of Customer Service Jon Snook said in a statement.

"We know that our customers have wanted additional access to their personal devices on their flights, and we've been working with the FAA for some time to make this a reality," Snook continued. "We're excited to be able to deliver this to our customers because of the FAA's expeditious approval."

American joins Delta Airlines and JetBlue Airways in winning early approval for their passengers to use electronics during the entire lengths of flights.

The FAA has said that it does not expect passengers on all airlines to be able to keep their gadgets on until the end of the year. The agency attributed the variance to "differences in fleets and operations."

Passengers will still not be able to make cell phone calls under the new rules, but mobile phones will also be able to be used in airplane mode.