Apple’s iPad won’t arrive until March 19 at the earliest as supply dwindles

Mar 12, 2012
Tech

It didn’t take long for Apple’s iPad supplies to dwindle. The announcement of the device only came on Wednesday, and it’s going to be difficult for lots of would-be new iPad owners to get the device when it launches on March 16. Already, attempting to pre-order the iPad on Apple.com nets users a delivery date […]

It didn’t take long for Apple’s iPad supplies to dwindle. The announcement of the device only came on Wednesday, and it’s going to be difficult for lots of would-be new iPad owners to get the device when it launches on March 16.

Already, attempting to pre-order the iPad on Apple.com nets users a delivery date of March 19, three days after the release date for the device. On Friday, there were still versions of the iPad that could be ordered for delivery by March 16 – but just a few days later, it’s too little, too late for iPad owners who need to be the first among their friends to get the new device.

As USA Today reports, all iPad models are affected by the shipping delay, according to Apple’s website. Apple released a statement noting that customer demand has been intense; perhaps as-yet unprecedented.

“Customer response to the new iPad has been off the charts and the quantity available for pre-order has been purchased,” Apple said in a statement. “Customers can continue to order online and receive an estimated delivery date.”

Apple device owners shouldn’t be strangers to delays, though. The shipping issues suggest that the only places to grab a new iPad on launch day will be an Apple store or seller, and that’s going to mean long lines, as usual. With just about every Apple device launch, supply wears thin almost immediately; USA Today’s report states that rumors are already suggesting shipping delays could be longer, stretching from three days to three weeks.

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It’s possible that the new iPad might be an even bigger launch for Apple than any other device before it. The iPad includes two features for which buyers have been asking for years: a Retina display, and 4G LTE data connection capability. The Retina display really has the ability to elevate the iPad’s visuals to a new level of quality, and the new iPad is the first device in Apple’s whole lineup to sport 4G LTE connectivity. With those two features in the bag, it’s not hard to imagine the lines being extra long in front of Apple Stores come Friday.

If you’re worried about snagging an iPad as soon as possible, an online order right now is probably advisable. Otherwise, it’s going to be long lines or an even longer online wait to get the new device. The best way to avoid a three-week delay is to get your order in now.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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