ANA's special Pokémon jet sends Pikachu and friends flying  (Source: Wikipedia)
Wi-Fi-enabled gaming consoles banned from flying

Handheld systems such as the Nintendo DS and Sony PlayStation Portable are very commonly seen on Japan’s mass transit systems. You won’t be seeing those portable consoles on Japanese airlines, however. They have been banned for airplane use according to the Hollywood Reporter.

It is now against the law to use onboard aircraft any device that is capable of any wireless transmission, which includes the latest handheld gaming systems and cordless computer accessories such as wireless mice.

Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport concluded that portable gaming systems emit electromagnetic waves that could potentially interfere with aircraft navigation and other systems.

Passengers will still be permitted to use gaming devices such as the Game Boy Advance, which features no wireless connectivity technology.

The report did not mention what the new law’s stance is on laptop computers, most of which have some form of Wi-Fi capabilities built-in. North American airlines current requests its passengers to disable all wireless functions of computers and phones while in-flight.

Although there is no way to temporarily disable all wireless activity on a Nintendo DS, all Sony PSP models feature a WLAN switch that prevents radio transmission. Should laptop computers with disabled wireless adapters be permitted for use in plane, then logically PSPs should also be allowed – though the law likely blankets all wireless-enabled gaming handhelds for the sake of simplicity.

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007

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