Friday, November 01, 2013

Hundreds queue as iPad Air hits the stores today

iPad Mini and iPad Air  Credit: Daily Mail

Your iPad just got a generation older!

Apple's new iPad Air becomes available in 41 countries today, pulling hundreds of fans to the front doors of Apple Stores, jostling to be among the first to get their hands on the high-end device.

Customers in Australia and Japan were among the first to get their hands on the 9.7-inch tablet as stores opened at 8am in each country.

Philip W. Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, unveiled the newly named iPad Air earlier this month.

It is the fifth 9.7-inch model to be sold by the Californian firm and is 20 per cent thinner than the iPad 4, with a 5MP camera.

Schiller also unveiled the new iPad mini which has a 7.9-inch Retina display for the first time, plus 10 hours battery life.

The iPad Air also went on sale on Apple's website in various regions at midnight local time, although reports claim only the Hong Kong store has sold out.

The release is part of a double-launch strategy in which the iPad Air is released today followed by the iPad mini 'sometime in November.'

Apple has not officially announced when the new 7.9-inch model goes on sale, although rumours claim it could launch on 21 November in time for Thanksgiving in the U.S and ahead of Christmas.

Reports suggest the new iPad Mini is delayed because of production problems surrounding the device's new Retina Display.

Apple shipped around 8.9 million of its first-generation iPads earlier this year, and even this wasn't enough to satisfy demand.

If Apple does ship only 3 million new devices - around a third of the old amount - it could leave at least two thirds of customers disappointed as the IHS iSuppli report predicts demand for the new tablet will exceed 9 million.

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