It looks like the launch of the iPad 2 in Austria this Friday is going to be loads of fun for all wannabe customers – NOT! As we witnessed in the US, Apple seems to have “underestimated demand” (to put it politely) for the 2nd iteration of the iPad, delivering way below the actual number of requested units.
I thought I could saunter into the McShark store this afternoon here in Vienna and pay down on an iPad, like last time, and pick it up on launch day. I was wrong. Here’s what I found out after talking to the store reps:
- There were over 900 nationwide pre-orders for the iPad 2 with this Apple reseller. I realize this sounds like a drop in the ocean compared to the US market but believe me, that’s a lot for Austria
- Apple has not delivered 900 units to McShark (they already have up lists of delivered units) – meaning that even if you do pay down € 100 or pay in full upfront, you are not guaranteed a unit this Friday, or in the next few weeks for that matter.
- All customers who have paid down are given preference according to date of their payment. Those who have pre-paid full price will be given preference over those who have paid partially.
- The launch will be strictly at 17h, not a moment sooner. Apple’s orders.
- The white model seems to be less popular among pre-orderers. Choosing white may better your chances of a unit sooner than later
What does this mean for me? The Nice Man at the McShark counter checked the system and saw that even if I pre-ordered, there are minus 3 units available for my choice (white 3G 16GB) – 10 are there, 3 more are already on the waiting list. A quick check across the models found worse availability. And no amount of cajoling (harmless flirting) could make him put me on the VIP list. So I’m stuck with the hard choice – should I pay € 500 upfront for an iPad 2, only to get it if I’m lucky in 2 weeks? Steups. It doesn’t feel right. But still, I’ll probably do it.
Moral of the story, do not dream of buying an iPad 2 this Friday in Austria, if you have not pre-ordered. I don’t see why they’re even encouraging us to come on Friday (as the invitation states) even we can’t get our hands on one to take home. **POUTING**