Initial supplies of Apple’s new model iPad for home delivery on March 16 have already sold out on pre-order, and would be Australian buyers are now being told their new tablets won’t be delivered until March 22.Apple claims that demand for the new device has been “off the charts” and the initial pre-order batch had been cleared out. Specific sales numbers weren’t available ahead of the official March 16 launch.
Retail stores will still have supply for launch day, however Apple is now quoting a two- to three-week shipping delay for any new iPad.
However customers can still acquire one of the older iPad 2s – starting price $429 – with just a 1-3 day delay for shipping.
It’s much the same story in the USA where the Apple online store is now showing pre-orders will ship on March 19, three days after the official launch day.
Would-be early adopters may still be able to get an iPad on Day 1 at an Apple retail store or from carriers Telstra, Optus or Vodafone. But, if past experience is a guide, that could involve an all-night queue outside the store.
US analysts, including Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster, expect Apple to sell roughly 9 million iPads in the current quarter.