Is a Tablet the Only TV You Need?

It started out of laziness: Put on sweatpants, plop on couch, search for remote. It’s not on the coffee table—but, hey, here’s an iPad! I check some emails, detour to Facebook and Twitter, click a link to a video of a baby chewing the bars of his crib. Why am I here again? Oh right: the TV. Where’s that remote? I should really look under this cushion. Or maybe press the TV’s “On” button? Nah. That would require walking 10. Whole. Feet. (Yes, I realize the irony of not wanting to move in sweatpants.) So it’s back to the easiest pipeline to entertainment at the moment: this tablet.

I bounce from video app to video app. A season of “Sherlock” here, some “The X-Files” there, and at some point while watching “Battle Royale” (totally better than “The Hunger Games,” by the way) I look at a clock. I’ve just spent hours staring at a 10-inch screen when there was a 40-inch one directly in front of me.

While planting your face in front of a tiny screen is perfectly acceptable on trans-Atlantic flights, it can be a little odd at home. But if you give yourself over to the tablet, it’s actually a pretty awesome experience. I’m not claiming an iPad beats the big screen, but I will say this: Watching shows and movies on a tablet feels closer to what television viewing should be like in the 21st century than what 21st-century TVs actually deliver.

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