DISH will loan iPad 2 tablets to Southwest passengers on select flights

Earlier this year we mentioned that DISH and Southwest Airlines had teamed up to bring free live television and on-demand services to all Wi-Fi equipment Southwest flights. The inaugural flight for the service saw DISH hand out free iPad tablets to passengers so they can enjoy the service. Being able to watch DISH programming during the flight is much better than having to endure whatever movie the airline happens to choose for the flight.

The catch is that some travelers may not have an iPad or other compatible device with them to enjoy the free DISH content during the flight. DISH has announced a very cool way to get around the problem with not having an iPad with you to enjoy the in-flight programming. The satellite TV provider will give passengers the opportunity to borrow an iPad 2 from its "Watch TV on the Fly" library.

Passengers will be able to check out an iPad 2 at their departure airport, user it to view live and on-demand TV programs while on the flight, and then turn it in when the flight lands. The sounds like an excellent program to help families flying for the holiday season make it through several hours in a sealed container thousands of feet above the ground.

The DISH "Watch TV on the Fly" libraries are available inside Southwest terminals in Chicago-Midway International Airport (MDW), Denver International Airport (DEN) and Oakland International Airport (OAK). The customers will be able to check out demos of the DISH Hopper DVR system and even sign up for DISH service right at the airport terminal. The iPad 2 lending offer is free of cost to all passengers traveling from these participating airports on Wi-Fi enabled flights.