Wow. Latest shipping times at Apple’s online store this morning for all iPad 2 models are at 4-5 weeks. Apple Insider reports that demand for the new model is ‘crushing’:
Yet another delay comes as stock of the iPad 2 around the U.S. is believed to be entirely sold out at all locations, including Apple’s retail stores and partners. Some select Apple stores with new shipments of the iPad 2 are set to open early today, while many other stores await more stock in the face of crushing demand.
I’m sure I read lots of reports in the months leading up to the iPad 2 launch about how Apple was ramping up production well in advance of the release. So what happened with that? Either the ramping up never got very revved up or if it did and we’re still seeing these sellouts then there must some enormous sales numbers. I’m going to guess it’s more of the former – though it does seem crazy that Apple would let this occur again, as it did with the original iPad.
Photo By: Philip Elmer-Dewitt
We’ve already seen a number of clear signs that the iPad 2 launch was a big success – including Apple’s online store shipping estimates changing from two days to 3-4 weeks in just a couple of days, and of course the long lines at Apple stores and other outlets all around the US on Friday.
Now there are also reports on analysts’ predictions on weekend / launch sales numbers for the iPad 2 – and they’re impressive even at the low end. Most I’ve seen – including this one at Fortune Tech – seem to fall in the 500,000 – 1 million range. That’s well ahead of the original iPad’s launch weekend, and would represent a great debut for the iPad 2 if these prove accurate.
It’s also interesting to see that an (admittedly small) survey done by Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster and his team (based on walking the lines in New York and Minnesota and talking to buyers) says that 70% of iPad 2 buyers are new to the iPad. If that one proves to be even close to representative of iPad 2 buyers as a whole, that’s superb news for Apple and very bad news for other tablet manufacturers.
Hopefully Apple will let us know some concrete sales figures soon.
Image Source: Apple Insider
Launch weekend for the iPad 2 looks to be a big hit for Apple so far, with large lines at Apple stores all over the US, sellouts of many or all models at many stores, and online orders looking huge as well within hours of going live.
Here are just a few indicators of the rush for the iPad 2 from reports round the web so far this weekend:
— Lines at the flagship store on New York’s Fifth Avenue are said to have been as long as 1,200-2,000 people on launch day – the largest crowd that Philip Elmer-Dewitt of Fortune’s Apple 2.0 site has ever seen at the store.
— In San Francisco lines for the iPad 2 at Apple stores were longer than for the iPhone 4, and one of their stores in the city was out of stock within two hours of the iPad 2 going on sale.
Apple has issued a press release today confirming some of the details of tomorrow’s iPad 2 launch, including the times the iPad 2 will go on sale online and in retail outlets:
Apple® today announced that iPad™ 2, the next generation of its magical device for browsing the web, reading and sending email, enjoying photos, watching videos, listening to music, playing games, reading ebooks and much more, will be available tomorrow at 5 p.m. local time at all 236 Apple retail stores in the US and through the Apple Store® (www.apple.com) beginning at 1 a.m. PT. Every customer who buys an iPad 2 at an Apple retail store will be offered free Personal Setup service, helping them customize their iPad 2 by setting up email, loading new apps from the App Store℠ and more, so they’ll be up and running with their new iPad 2 before they leave the store. iPad 2 will also be available beginning at 5 p.m. local time at AT&T, Best Buy, Target, Verizon Wireless, Walmart and select Apple Authorized Resellers.
They also offered a reminder on iPad 2 model pricing in the US:
iPad 2 with Wi-Fi will be available in the US on March 11 for a suggested retail price of $499 for the 16GB model, $599 for the 32GB model, $699 for the 64GB model. iPad 2 with Wi-Fi + 3G will be available for a suggested retail price of $629 for the 16GB model, $729 for the 32GB model and $829 for the 64GB model. iPad 2 with Wi-Fi + 3G compatible with the Verizon network will be available in the US only for a suggested retail price of $629 for the 16GB model, $729 for the 32GB model and $829 for the 64GB model.
South By Southwest (SXSW) – the ever-popular annual music, film, and interactive festival – kicks off here in my lovely hometown of Austin, Texas tomorrow. The first four days of the event are the SXSW Interactive festival – which attracts techies and geeks and online stars from around the world. And it looks like this year Apple has decided to make it much easier for all those good people to spend their money on shiny new Apple products.
The Austin-American Statesman reports that they’re set to open a temporary store – or ‘Popup Shop’ – in a prime downtown location tomorrow, to coincide with the opening of SXSW. Oh, and the other little thing that happens tomorrow of course is the launch of the iPad 2.
The new temporary store is in the Scarbrough Building at 6th and Congress Avenue, right in the heart of Austin’s downtown area. Hopefully the popup shop will draw tons of SXSW-ers – and keep them all away from my local Apple Store.
Thanks to reader Rand for mentioning this on my earlier post about where to buy an iPad 2 on launch day.
Well, when you have as many rumors floating around as we saw before the iPad 2 official announcement today, there is bound to be a LITTLE disappointment. So let’s look at what we didn’t see or hear about.
- No Retina Display- Not a big shock to me. I don’t see how Apple could ship a screen like this in volume this year. Maybe in the iPad 3.
- No S-IPS Screen- I was a little surprised that there were no screen improvements at all. Production volumes may have been an issue here, however. Apple is going to have to produce a lot of iPad 2’s to meet the initial demand, so I guess this may be a good thing.
- No GPS chip in the WiFi Model- Oh well. Now I have to decide if I want to cough up an extra $120 for one lousy feature.
- No Carbon Fiber Body- Apple stuck with the aluminum back, but it really isn’t a big deal since iPad 2 is still thinner and lighter than the original.
- No additional ports or SD slot- Maybe a secondary port or slot was pulled at the last minute, per some reports. I am personally not surprised at this either, though. Additional ports seems very “un-Apple,” at least on what they are now calling their “Post-PC” consumer devices.
- No immediate availability- Again, not shocked about this. I was hoping for pre-orders today, though. I will be unhappy if the iPad 2 isn’t available to pick up on the 11th. I am leaving town for a few days on the 12th, and will be unhappy if I don’t have my new toy in hand.
- Memory- TBD. Apple doesn’t usually talk much about memory in these announcements, and they didn’t in this case, either. Hopefully there will be some leaks on this critical feature, but we will probably have to wait for the teardown sights to work their magic before we know for sure.
Image Source: Magicalharsh.wordpress.com
OK, this is hands-down my favorite iPad rumor this week / month / ever.
AppleInsider has reason to believe that customers could be holding the new tablet device in their hands shortly after next Wednesday’s press event.
According to people familiar with the matter, Apple is preparing several of its operating segments to perform functions during the second half of next week that are representative of nothing short of a large scale, consumer-oriented product roll out (not just an announcement). And with official invitations to next Wednesday’s press briefing clearly indicating a focus on iPad, these people believe at least one version of the refreshed device will be in transit to retail outlets during that briefing.
It should be noted that while nothing is definitive till Apple issues a statement, these same people have consistently provided accurate information regarding Apple’s future product plans and the timing related to those plans.
Apple Insider’s article goes on to point out that if this does prove accurate, it would almost certainly be just a WiFi only model that is released immediately, as the 3G / cellular models require work with their carrier partners leading up to release and would likely follow a few weeks later.
Oh boy, time to break the piggy bank if this one proves right. I’ll be straight out the door to get one; even though I’ll likely sell it off and trade up to a 3G model as soon as they’re around.
How about you all? Would you buy an iPad 2 this week if they’re out on shelves?
News Via: Apple Insider