Apple's iPad hits store shelves in the USA

The iPad goes on sale at 9 a.m. at the company's more than 200 retail outlets in the United States

Apple's iPad hits store shelves in the USA


Apple Inc's iPad hits store shelves on Saturday and consumers at long last get to see for themselves whether the tablet device is worth all the breathless publicity.

The iPad goes on sale at 9 a.m. at the company's more than 200 retail outlets in the United States, along with many Best Buy stores.

Wall Street is curious to see if the device -- touted as a bridge between a laptop and smartphone -- can win a mass following like the iPhone has, and will be monitoring crowds at Apple stores this weekend to gauge its appeal.

The afternoon before the much hyped tablet computer went on sale, a smattering of customers lined up at stores in New York, Washington, Boston and San Francisco, in marked contrast to the thousands that ushered in the iPhone in 2007.

With many able to pre-order the gadget since mid-March, there was little reason to stand in line ahead of Saturday's 9 a.m. launch. Those who ordered early enough online get their iPads on Saturday, via pickup at a store or home delivery.

Analysts say the company has already received several hundred thousands in pre-orders, with sales estimated at anywhere from 4 million to 7 million or more in the gadget's first year.

Apple unveiled the iPad in January after months of fevered speculation, and its stock has risen steadily over the last two months.

It has plenty riding on the iPad, which it calls a new category of device: a lightweight media consumption device that tries to fuse the best attributes of a smartphone and a laptop.

The iPad's touchscreen measures 9.7 inches. At 1.5 pounds, the device resembles an oversized iPhone and runs on the same operating system. It starts at $499 for a short-range Wi-Fi model, topping out at more than $800 for a 3G-enabled version.

The iPad is designed for using media of all sorts, including games, video, pictures, electronic books and magazines. It can access roughly 150,000 already existing iPhone apps, as well as new ones freshly designed for the iPad.

Apple is also launching its own digital book business to compete with the Kindle from Inc and other e-readers and e-books.

Saturday's iPad launch is only in the United States, and only for the Wi-Fi model. It will be available in nine other countries later this month.




Güncelleme Tarihi: 03 Nisan 2010, 14:07

Muhammed Öylek