Smartphones are not the problem
I probably would not like my seatmate yelling into a flat rectangle at 38,000 feet, but getting from here to there has lots more problems.
First, there is the shrinking number of airline companies with the imperative to never let a seat go unoccupied, or a knee not touching the seatback in front. The sport of travelling in style in the sky now has accomodations worse than a Greyhound bus filled with a college team that has just won a championship.
My favorite is "charging for checking bags". This new tradition has encouraged the stowage of 50 pound "carry on's" over my head, where my unwrinkled suit jacket or coat should go -- instead of in special places under the plane designed for the purpose. Loading and unloading takes insanely longer and I have to wait for a 98 pound grandmother to coax a bag that weighs almost as much as she does into or out of four feet above her head. Charge for carry-ons, not checked bags you ninny's!
TSA -- yes, an essential part of preventing another 9/11, but $8 billion a year and 55,000 employees? For the traveller who years ago could skid to a stop outside a terminal 15 minutes before flight time and make it to their seats, the ritualistic reaction to every rumor from the tiny band that wants us all dead is ingrained in all of us in "get to the airport three hours ahead' chunks. We are taking off shoes, not bringing anything sharp or anything liquid on board because of rumors or incidents. Yeah, its way better than the Ghanan refugee pretending to dispense security, but 55,000 federal employees makes me safer?
Fortunately, for the airlines, the loss of revenue for the stupid tethered phones in the seat back in front of you will be offset by wifi fees, so they don't have to take the next innovation step in airline profitability and have us stand holding on to straps as in the subway.