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After being told for years that using mobile phones on airplanes will cause them to crash and burn, it seems that one airline is experiencing a change of heart. The Irish budget airline, Ryanair, is expected to introduce the first cell phone friendly flights within a matter of months.

Of course, there is a catch.

Of course, it involves money.

It appears that 14 of the 166 strong fleet of planes are to be equipped with an in-flight mobile phone booster cell. Unfortunately, due to the relatively low power of the device, only a maximum of six people at any given time will be able to make voice calls. However, I understand that texting and BlackBerry email polling will not be restricted. Apart from by cost, that is.

Ah yes, this is no charitable exercise. Expect to pay at least £2 per minute while in the air, with the Ryanair taking a cut from every call of course.

What if all you want is to fly from A to B without the joy of listening to some suit jabbering away to some other suit? What if you just want to sleep? Or read your book?

Ryanair's chief executive, Michael O'Leary, says users looking for a quiet flight should use another airline: "Ryanair is noisy, full and we are always trying to sell you something" he says.

As Editorial Director and Managing Analyst with IT Security Thing I am putting more than two decades of consulting experience into providing opinionated insight regarding the security threat landscape for IT security professionals. As an Editorial Fellow with Dennis Publishing, I bring more than two decades of writing experience across the technology industry into publications such as Alphr, IT Pro and (in good old fashioned print) PC Pro. I also write for SC Magazine UK and Infosecurity, as well as The Times and Sunday Times newspapers. Along the way I have been honoured with a Technology Journalist of the Year award, and three Information Security Journalist of the Year awards. Most humbling, though, was the Enigma Award for 'lifetime contribution to IT security journalism' bestowed on me in 2011.

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