by George Heymann

iPad 2 Launch

By George Heymann

On March 11, Apple officially launched iPad2. The iPad2 adds several refinements to the very popular iOS iPad line —  a dual-core processor, a gyroscope, and front- and rear-facing cameras, while maintaining all the other features of the original iPad in a package that is 33 percent thinner and up to 15 percent lighter.  Look for a full iPad2 review soon.

Locally, the iPad2 launch was greeted by a small group of enthusiastic shoppers. I arrived at the local Best Buy approximately an hour before the official 5 p.m. launch time. There were approximately 14 people in line. Some people were a little camera shy and graciously stepped out of frame so that I could take a picture.

About another 10 or so people lined up behind me in the final hour before launch.

Several people had gone into the store and the rumor in line was that the store had 20 units for sale.
While waiting, I spoke to several of the users in line, about half of whom were users upgrading from the original iPad.

Interestingly, several people had driven in from the surrounding area for a chance to buy one. One gentleman had been to the Apple Store at Briargate in Colorado Springs. He had called the store and was told there were approximately 65 people in line. He arrived at the store about 30 minutes later and estimated the line had swelled to nearly 100. So he decided to drive to Pueblo and take his chances.
A father and daughter had come from Trinidad for a chance to pick up an iPad. Neither had used an iPad before but were looking forward to owning one after seeing other users with theirs.

Josh Newberry first in line at Best Buy on iPad Launch Day.

First in line at the Best Buy store was Josh Newberry, who was upgrading from the original 16GB WiFi-only iPad. Josh clearly stated why he wanted to upgrade.
“This one’s better; it has Facetime cameras, faster processor, better graphics, just a better version. My phone has hotspot capability so I’ll probably stick with a 16GB WiFi-only version. I can always get a 64GB version later if I need more space.”
Others in line reported that that they had been to the North Side Walmart, where a small quantity (four or five) of the 16-gig models were available, with customers already in line.

A Best Buy store representative came out about 4:45 p.m. and announced that only 10 units were available, which generated a collective groan from most waiting in line. The store representative said buyers could place a $100 deposit and then receive the $100 back as a Best Buy gift card for purchase of the iPad.

The deposit would hold the iPad for a limited time following contact by store personnel.
Users looking for an iPad2 in many areas had quite a few stores to choose from: Walmart, Target, Sam’s Club, Best Buy, AT&T and Verizon as well as the Apple stores. Not all stores in all locations had stock so call to check for availability.

Remember, both Verizon and AT&T are carrying the WiFi +3G iPad and the data plans are optional (no contract). You can activate and or turn-off the 3G data on a monthly basis without any longterm commitment.

Were you among the lucky who managed to get their hands on an iPad? Share your purchasing experience and early impressions in the comments.


Filed under: Apple, General technology, Hardware, iOS, Ipad, Media

4 Responses

  1. HCGD says:

    Zune and iPod: Most people compare the ipads to the Touch, but after seeing how slim and surprisingly small and light it is, I consider it to be a rather unique hybrid that combines qualities of both the Touch and the Nano. It’s very colorful and lovely OLED screen is slightly smaller than the touch screen, but the player itself feels quite a bit smaller and lighter. It weighs about 2/3 as much, and is noticeably smaller in width and height, while being just a hair thicker.

  2. HCG says:

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current iPads owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between the other players.

  3. HCG says:

    Hands down, Apple’s app store wins by a mile. Microsoft has plans, especially in the realm of games, but I’m not sure I’d want to bet on the future if this aspect is important to you.

  4. FP says:

    I don’t necessarily agree however I can understand where you are coming from with that. At least it was well thought out.

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