Apple has officially announced the arrival of its latest iPad model in stores to be Friday 16 March.
The new iPad will be launched at 8.00 am local time on Friday morning in the United States and nine other countries. It will also be available for purchase through Apple's online store.
For the WiFi-only, third-generation model, Apple Inc. will open its doors to expectant crowds on Friday in the U.S., UK, Germany, Japan, Canada, France, Hong Kong, Singapore, Switzerland, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The retail price for the new iPad is from $499 for the 16GB model, $599 for the 32GB model, and $699 for the 64GB model.
In the U.S., a number of different retail outlets will stock the device, including AT&T and Verizon stores. Best Buy, Radio Shack, Sam's Club, Target and Walmart are also official stockists of the device.
Customers purchasing the new iPad will also have the option of a free, personal setup service, including email setup and the configuration of applications. Personal pickup options are also available through the Apple App store.
The announcement has also confirmed a further 25 countries that will soon receive next-generation iPad stock, including Austria, Czech Republic, Iceland, Italy and Spain. It is expected that the iPad will be available in these regions from March 23.
Online pre-order dates for these countries have yet to be confirmed.
An analyst at Piper Jaffray, Gene Munster, projected that Apple will top 1 million new iPad unit sales on its launch date. Considering Apple's popularity and the likelihood of incredible consumer demand on Friday, it is reasonable to expect that many queuing Apple fans may be left disappointed.