New iPad launches in Australia – without the usual stock shortage problems

The new iPad has finally arrived, with hundreds of eager fans waiting outside Apple stores and resellers to get their hands on the latest gadget in one of the smoothest and least noteworthy Apple releases in some time.

Reviews have poured in, with unanimous praise for the iPad’s new high-resolution screen and new camera, although local reviewers have continued to lament the lack of 4G capability.

This morning hundreds of fans lined up outside of Apple stores in capital cities, with many turning up hours before the official opening time of 8am. According to reports on internet message boards including Whirlpool, many had queued since early this morning – one buyer in Sydney has been in line for four days.

However, unlike previous releases, Australia seems to have escaped a stock shortage. A number of resellers including JB Hi-Fi, Dick Smith, Good Guys, Big W and Target are all selling the iPad this morning, with no queues at many locations even in capital cities.

Reports on Whirlpool suggest most buyers at these locations have been able to walk into stores and pick up an iPad straight away, while queues still remain longer at Apple Stores, which are quickly selling out.

Most of the stock appears to be at JB Hi-Fi stores. And although units are selling out quickly, the launch has been less noteworthy than in previous launches where most stock was limited to official Apple stores.

Apple has slowly aligned Australian release dates with the United States’ launches, suggesting the country is now viewed as a key market and likely to get more stock.

Meanwhile, the first reviews of the device appear to unanimously praise the updates, most notably the high-resolution “retina” screen. The Verge has given the device an overwhelming response, saying the display is “incredible”.

“I’m not being hyperbolic or exaggerative when I say it is easily the most beautiful computer display I have ever looked at. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that you hold this in your hands, or maybe it’s the technology that Apple is utilizing, or maybe it’s the responsiveness of iOS — but there’s something almost bizarre about how good this screen is.”

At the Wall Street Journal, Walter Mossberg pointed out that even though the extra weight was a tiny drawback, it wasn’t a deal breaker.

“While the weight gain was noticeable, I didn’t find it a problem even for long reading or video-watching sessions. The extra thickness was barely discernible.”

However, the New York Times has pointed out that apps will now take up more space, given they’ll need such high-resolution visuals.

MacWorld said the update is definitely worth it for first-iPad owners, although it did say that iPad 2 owners shouldn’t feel the need to rush out and buy this upgrade straight away.

And for those curious about what’s exactly inside the new iPad, iFixit.com has already posted its ritual opening of all new Apple gadgets, piece by piece. It’s a great way to find out what’s inside the new iPad without having to take it apart yourself.

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