“In many ways the iPad is reinventing portable computing, and it’s outstripping the wildest of predictions,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said at the company’s iPad 3 event last Wednesday, noting that Apple sold more units of the iPads than any other PC maker sold PCs in the fourth quarter last year.
Analysts from Canaccord Genuity had predicted sales of almost 60 million iPads this year while the record pre-orders of the new Apple tablet had led to an estimate of 65 million. Since the first iPad was released, a little over two years ago, the company has sold around 55 million of the tablet computers.
Apple confirmed that its stores in Britain will open at 8am on Friday to sell the new iPad, which was announced last week in San Francisco by Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, claims The Telegraph.
Analysts T Michael Walkley and Matthew Ramsay, of Canaccord Genuity, told Reuters: “With our checks indicating record pre-orders and 2-3 week wait times for new iPads, we anticipate a record launch this weekend.”
The experts predicted that Apple’s rivals would struggle to launch rival products over the next couple of quarters. They said: “While Samsung appears to have the most compeititive Android tablet offering, we view Windows 8 as a greater longer-term threat to Apple’s dominant iPad share than Android tablets.”
As was officially said last week at the Apple’s event, the third-generation iPad has a high-resolution Retina display powered by a new quad-core graphics processor, the A5X chip. The device also features 4G LTE model capable of connecting to high-speed data networks in the United States and Canada, as well as 3G networks worldwide based on HSPA+ and DC-HSPDA.
Additionally, Apple will also continue to distribute the iPad 2 that they started releasing last year in a 16GB internal storage capacity, which costs $399 for the Wi-Fi-only model and $529 for the 3G-capable version, writes Social Barrel.
So, on Friday, Apple’s new 3G/4G-ready, Retina Display-equipped iPad will hit shelves at the company’s retail locations in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, the UK, Puerto Rico, and, finally, the U.S. Virgin Islands.
On March 23, the new iPad will become available in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macau, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.
While buying the device, ask Apple’s representatives for iPad not for the iPad 3, as the Apple hasn’t continued the numbering pattern? “That would have been too predictable,” says Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president for marketing, writes The New York Daily News.
Really, the new iPad should have been called the iPad 2S. In the past, Apple added the letter S to iPhone models that weren’t exactly new but had been tastefully enhanced (iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4S).
That’s exactly what’s going on with the new iPad. Its technical improvements keep it at the forefront of desirability — just ahead of the snapping jaws of its Android competition — but don’t take it in any new directions.
The iPad 2, which will remain on sale but will have a lower price than the new device, also sold out quickly when it was launched last year. Within days of launch, expected delivery times for online orders had grown to up to five weeks.
Last week, eBay reported that more than 16,000 iPads had been pre-ordered for sale in the two weeks preceding the Apple announcement, suggesting that many users were preparing to upgrade.