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Malaysia airlines flight 370: Passengers phones still ringing.

Mackdog

Senior Member.
I don't think anyone has started a thread about this yet, so I wanted to go ahead and start one. I have not heard too many theories from the likes of Alex Jones or any other major CTers yet, but today I read several times about how the families of those missing on flight 370 have come out and said that their cell phones are still ringing on the other end and that social networking sites show that they are still online via their smartphones. This is something that intrigues me because it seems like it's possible that the plane has been diverted to some unknown location due to a hijacking if this is true. If not, is it possible that phones could still ring even if they are at the bottom of the ocean?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world...b78642-a862-11e3-b61e-8051b8b52d06_story.html


This is from the article:
 

M Bornong

Senior Member.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way...hones-do-not-mean-malaysian-passengers-are-ok
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
If not, is it possible that phones could still ring even if they are at the bottom of the ocean?
Try turning your phone off (or put it in airplane mode), then calling it from another phone. You will hear it "ringing" through the other phone.

And I suspect that the QQ status just means they have not logged out.
 

jaydeehess

Senior Member.
On the JREF site there is a thread each month for quotes found on the internet that display ignorance and are funny.

One such a few years ago was from a conspiracy theorist who was convinced that certain posters must be govt agents. His 'proof' that according to his favourite forum there were several posters who had been continuously logged on for weeks or months.

'nuff said.
 

Jason

Senior Member
This is totally normal. I don't know if anyone else has experienced this, but there are times when I lose my phone temporarily in my home or my wife does. So we ask one another to call our phone so we can hear the ring tone to help us locate it. When I dial my wife's phone or vice versa we can hear the phone ring up to 4 times from the caller's phone before the lost phone's ringer is hear once. I don't know if that helps.

I found this source on yahoo, don't know how reliable it is but the guy claims to work for a Swedish Telecom company; The question was about; If the phone's battery is dead, will the phone still ring or go right to vm

 
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jaydeehess

Senior Member.
In addition, Jason, you are calling from within the same area that the lost phone resides in. Your call is not searching for a phone that is in another city, that last reported "here I am" to a tower in another far away exchange or area code.

It is surprising to many that even for wired phones the sound you hear of the distant phone ringing is not an indication that the distant phone is actually ringing. Sometimes the opposite happens and a person making a call will not hear indication of the distant phone ringing yet the person on the other end answers and when queried says that it did ring once or twice. This indicates that connection was made before you were sent the first ring.

Cell phones rarely if ever get that because whereas a wired phone is always connected in the same route, a cell phone has to be routed through whatever tower it is connected to, and if its hitting more than one tower a decision must be made as to which one will complete the call.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
This depends on if it has a good connection. I've been experimenting with this here,and it seems a bit variable. The phone could get shut down before it send the offline message.
 

jaydeehess

Senior Member.
I often travel through areas with no cell coverage. My phone might send a " I'm going off" signal if I turn it off while going through one of those areas but nothing is listening. I often do this because I am going to a town along the CDN/USA border and my phone is more likely to connect to an American tower. When someone calls me and if I answer then it costs my much more than if its on a Canadian tower.
 

Jason

Senior Member
This depends on if it has a good connection. I've been experimenting with this here,and it seems a bit variable. The phone could get shut down before it send the offline message.
And possibly how its turned off. I know if I hold in the button on the top of my iPhone, it takes a good 20 seconds or so to turn off, and even when the batteries dies I see the phone show the white apple with the black background screen but its much quicker. Maybe if you take the battery right out of the phone it won't shut down the right way, but no one has access to the batteries, unless you know what your doing.

Just out of curiosity Mick, how do you experiment with this sort of thing. How do you know if your phone is sending the "message" or not.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Just out of curiosity Mick, how do you experiment with this sort of thing. How do you know if your phone is sending the "message" or not.

I experiment by turing the phone off or putting it in airplane mode, and then calling it from a landline. Then I see if I hear a ring, or if it goes to voicemail.

My initial results were that I heard a ring. But I repeated the experiment today and I got voicemail. Must be a bit random, and depend on network conditions.
 

jaydeehess

Senior Member.
I experiment by turing the phone off or putting it in airplane mode, and then calling it from a landline. Then I see if I hear a ring, or if it goes to voicemail.

My initial results were that I heard a ring. But I repeated the experiment today and I got voicemail. Must be a bit random, and depend on network conditions.
I think there are a lot of factors to take into account.
Are the two phones within the same exchange
Does the Central Office "know" the cell phone is on/off line
How busy is the local landline exchange
How busy is the tower(s) to which the phone is in contact

One aspect of the 9/11 disaster was that the cell towers in Manhattan were overloaded with calls. (did not help that the first plane took out the connection to the tower on WTC1). That is a worst case scenario but there are times when the system can be very busy even absent a major disaster.

The experiment would best be tried by putting your cell phone into a grounded metal box thus cutting off its connection w/o allowing any transmit of an 'offline' message.

You had some calls go directly to voicemail, and its not known how many of the calls to passengers also went to voicemail immediately. All we are getting is the more sensational reports of phones ringing.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
The experiment would best be tried by putting your cell phone into a grounded metal box thus cutting off its connection w/o allowing any transmit of an 'offline' message.
Test it with the sim card out.
I just realized I had a radiation shielded chamber in my kitchen. The microwave oven.

I stuck my iPhone in there. Called it from my landline, and and I heard four "rings" via the calling phone (while the iPhone was all "no signal"), then went to voicemail.
 
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deirdre

Senior Member.
but did the ringing 'malaysian' phones Ever go to voicemail? I had the impression they just rang and rang.
 

jaydeehess

Senior Member.
One does have to subscribe to a voicemail service in order to get voicemail. Some of the passengers may be saving money by not doing that. Not sure How "burner" , pay as you go, phones operate wrt voicemail either.

At any rate they most likely will not ring forever as this ties up the system. Eventually the central office switch will cut you off, you'll get a fast busy signal, your cue to hang up.

Good thinking Mick, of course a microwave oven!( as long as force of habit does not compell the experimenter to turn it on)
 
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