Some have already written the tablet market off as a gimmick and vowed to never purchase one of the blown-up smartphones themselves. The argument is that you are getting little to no extra functionality over a pocket-sized smartphone and are paying roughly what a decent laptop would cost. Having owned about seven tablets or so now, I definitely understand where they are coming from and to an extent, I can agree.

Truth is, however, there are a lot of legitimate real-world uses for tablets and the market is here to stay, gimmick or not. People are running their businesses from them, schools are beginning to encourage students use them and even hotels are equipping rooms with the touchscreen slabs as a stand-in concierge service (restaurant reservations, room service orders and even temperature and lighting controls). There are a million things I'd rather do from a tablet versus my phone or computer.

But with this rapid growth and adoption of tablets, several people have taken their use a bit too far. According to a Press Release posted over at Phandroid, T-Mobile will be offering a tablet rental service to Los Angeles Angels attendees. That's right, for $10, you will have access to:

  • Free game-day program, optimized for viewing on the tablet -- an instant $3 added value
  • Free content from the Zinio magazine app, with the ability to read from a sampling of magazines during the game, including ESPN and many other popular magazines, drawing from Zinio’s library of more than 4,500 magazine titles.
  • Free T-Mobile TV (on the T-Mobile G-Slate only), providing content from popular TV shows. All regular free content, plus the "Select" package, regularly $4.99, is available as part of the game-day tablet rental
  • Access to T-Mobile’s blazing-fast network, powering fast video chat sessions with friends and family at home, and blazing downloads of rich media content

To be honest, all of this for $10 actually isn't a bad deal. But seriously? Isn't a tablet rental service at a baseball game a little bit silly?

The whole point of going to a baseball game – or any sporting event, for that matter – is to kick back, relax, enjoy the company and greasy food (maybe a beverage or two, it that's your bag). Maybe I'm just backwards for wanting to escape from my technology-driven life by going to hockey games and other types of events. I am known to tweet and hit up the book of faces during a commercial break, which is understandable. But for $10, I can imagine most people will opt to use their smartphones – which they are already paying for each month – instead. Or if most sports goers are like my mother at all, they will carry their own tablet … or two (not joking here) into the game.

I'll be the first to stand up for modern tablets and their worth – I love them, probably a little too much. And even a tablet rental service isn't a half bad idea … for school, work, hotels or even a coffee shop. In fact, I think it's a novel idea. Magenta and the LA Angels have something going here, but they're headed in the wrong direction and targeting the wrong people altogether. Anyone who has ever been to a sporting even will probably agree that most of those tablets, unless they're treated with an OtterBox, will be returned scratched and banged up at best, that is, if they are returned at all. Most will probably be forgotten under the seats and I'm sure an idiot or two will try (try being the keyword) to be sly and sneak out with their rented tablet. Booze, angry or excited fans and technology simply do not mix.

 What say you, pups? Are tablet rentals a good idea? What about at sporting events? Could you see this actually being a needed/desired service elsewhere?

Image via Zimbio

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48 Reactions to this post

"Would you ever rent a tablet at an event?"

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Louis Thevenot What a waste of money
Viktor B Thumperofseals well i dont see the point of a tablet any way
Richard Wilson "Ur joking rite??"
Gjorgji Cvetkovski Dumbest idea. EVER!
Amanda Elliott no. never.
Marko Teullet there is a restaurant here in hailey id they rent tablets for 1 dolla and free wifi, cool to play with the ipad for the ones like me that cannot afford one
Claire Murray I once pulled out portable chess set during very boring Red Sox game.
Gordon Simon No way!
Taylor Rentschler No...I own 2 iPads plus our school is getting iPads so I'll have 3.....unless they were new ones that haven't come out yea then defiantly!!!!
Cheri Moushey Roby At a event? Very rude!
Kory S. Deberry You said the magic word baseball game,boring great idea
Marti Ruiz Hell yes to hold my food lol..seriusly ?
Cody Sulouff No.... I have my iPhone. Why would I pay money to rent something that does the same things as my phone just on a bigger screen? And if I go to a sporting event I want to watch it not watch YouTube videos... I can do that at home
Angel Miguel Peguero only honeycomb tabkets
Erman Guido Tablets r useless
Robert Marzuco This just goes to show how boring people know Baseball is that they have to give you something else to do while you are there.
Bryan Yu Why at any sport venue? You're there to watch the game not an tablet. If you want to use a tablet stay home and do it, it costs less and makes more sense.
Dannale Beaubrun really silly
J.r. Jenkins It's stupid. Why go to a game to browse the web...
Chance Runk Nope. I'd rather bring my own
Siddharth Krishna Dwivedi an iPad a day is better than a cheap andro tab 4evr
Shaun Mbhiza Nah I wouldn't. Tablets are lame.
Brent Held it actually doesnt sound like that bad of an idea....i mean if you don't have a data plan with your phone and all you have is something like an itouch, its hard to find a wifi connection at a ballpark
Samuel Lee They rent it to play baseball together through tablet.. So no one will have to snatch to get the ball flying towards us
Timothy D Alston It's worth a try. Some people aren't baseball fans they just go to be with their spouse so that might keep them occupied. Also if there's a pitcher's duel that can get boring so that can entertain when it gets boring
Molly Thayn Nope not worth it
Eric Drinkard I would love to rent one from a store for a day. I mean rent one then another and see which one you like best.
Alex DC return it with a busted screen, and tell them it got hit by a foul ball.
Fabian Garcia Agree wit dwayne
Fabian Garcia Agree wit dwayne
Joe Stuckey Depends on the Demographics. It might be a great way to market Tablet to a people who apparently have disposable income. Sounds like a clever way of product placement.
Christopher Wesley Pretty silly idea.
Steve Williams until a fly ball almost hits u but the guy next to u spills his beer all over the tablet
Rommel Balahadia absolutely no! :D
Hima Bichali Probably not.
Niya Wilbourn No!!!! Lol
Clemmie Hooper I went one better - 'blowing off' not only Tablets, but also Smartphones. I just want a Phone to TALK - and a BASIC Cellphone does that just fine. For computing, I need the power of a real Laptop - and have that covered too. The way I see it, I already put in my years as a 'pay through the nose' early adopter, in bringing the Laptop and Basic Cellphones to the point of useful maturity - and am now happy with the results, and comfortable with the equipment. If the younger generation sees a need to try to stuff a full computer into a cellphone, in a form too miniaturized for real humans to work with, then they're welcome to it - but count me out.
Adam Fontaine Not likely.
Jesus Casillas No its dumb then what the point of going to the event I mean you go to keep you entertained not to rent a tablet and do something else
Dwayne Demaurivert Yeah April your cutee(:
April Walker don't people go to a game to "watch" the game? Not to watch Tmobile TV or read a magazine! wtf
Claire Murray Sorry, read "table" not tablet - need more coffee.
Claire Murray Have done in the way past; depends on tbe audience & what I'm doing.
Anthony Douglas Hell no thats just stupid...flat out stupid
James Hampsten not at a baseball game! that's just nuts...

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