March 16, 2012
New iPad Launches Today Amid Large Crowds
Thousands of customers lined up outside of Apple stores across the world on Friday morning to be the first to get their hands on an iPad.
Apple stores in 10 different countries opened up with hoards of people cheering and clapping, anxious to ensure their ownership of the new device was established today.
The device is also the fastest iPad Apple has released, reaching new speeds on AT&T and Verizon's LTE networks.
In just over a week of announcing the device, online orders have slipped to two to three weeks for shipping.
Walmart was the first retailer to offer the new iPad, with sales beginning at 12:01 a.m. local time throughout the U.S.
The new iPad was launched in the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Switzerland. Over 450 people were waiting in line outside an Apple store in Tokyo.
Target is offering U.S. customers a special deal, giving up to $350 in store credit for trading in a working iPad 2.
Research firm Gartner said that tablet sales are expected to increase to 326 million by 2015 with Apple dominating the market.
Apple's stock price touched $600 a share on Thursday amid the new iPad craze, nearly a $100 increase from where it was at a month ago.
The company´s stock-price has gained 57 percent in the past three months, and 73 percent over the past year.
Canaccord Genuity analysts predict that the new iPad will set Apple up to sell 65.6 million iPads this year.
The new iPads price starts at $499 for the basic model, reaching all the way up to $829 for a 64 gigabyte LTE model.
Apple also dropped the price of its iPad 2 to $399 for the basic model, which is readily available in the online store.