In a prepared statement, Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs said: “One million iPads in 28 days — that’s less than half of the 74 days it took to achieve this milestone with iPhone.. Demand continues to exceed supply and we’re working hard to get this magical product into the hands of even more customers.”
On Monday, analysts at Piper Jaffray estimated Apple sold 300,000 iPad 3Gs to a welcoming public over this past weekend. The 300,000 figure mirrors sales numbers for the first weekend sales for the iPad Wi-Fi tablet, according to Piper Jaffray. The Wall Street Journalreported Monday that Apple Stores in San Francisco, New York, Boston, and Houston sold out of the iPad 3G by Saturday — the first full day the iPad 3G was available.
Accustomed to Lines
Product availability is not an unfamiliar problem for Apple. After repeated sell-outs at Apple Stores nationwide during the and 3GS launches, Apple created an online availability tool that let users check iPhone inventory at their local Apple Stores in the U.S. The availability checker helped prevent would-be iPhone owners from arriving at Apple’s retail locations in search of a new phone, only to leave empty-handed.
Apple has yet to introduce a similar shopping tool for the iPad, but the tablet device has had its own set of supply problems. The iPad was originally slated to be go on sale internationally in late March, but that date was pushed back from late April to May 10 due to “surprisingly strong demand in the United States.” The initial launch of the Wi-Fi-only version of the iPad was also changed from late March to April 3 for unspecified reasons.
Now that Apple has reached the benchmark of 1 million devices sold in the U.S. and reported inventory depletions across the country, it will be interesting to see how Apple will deal with demand for the iPad in the U.S. and abroad. International pre-orders for theiPad are slated to begin on Monday, May 10 for customers in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland and the U.K.
Before the iPad’s debut there was some doubt as to whether the public would embrace Apple’s new, one-panel tablet device type. Critics pointed to a gadget marketplace already crowded with smartphones, e-readers, laptops, and netbooks, and wondered how Apple’s iPad would fare against these more established portable devices.
But with 1 million devices sold in the United States alone, and international pre-orders set to begin on May 10, it appears the iPad will be yet another popular Apple product that people are clamoring to get their hands on.