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iPad shortage forces Apple to delay international launch until May

post #1 of 129
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Apple on Wednesday revealed that demand for the iPad is far higher than the company predicted, with more than a half-million U.S.-only sales in the first week. As a result, it has delayed the international launch of the iPad until the end of May.

"Although we have delivered more than 500,000 iPads during its first week, demand is far higher than we predicted and will likely continue to exceed our supply over the next several weeks as more people see and touch an iPad," Apple said in a statement. "We have also taken a large number of pre-orders for iPad 3G models for delivery by the end of April."

The press release continued: "Faced with this surprisingly strong U.S. demand, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the international launch of iPad by one month, until the end of May. We will announce international pricing and begin taking online pre-orders on Monday, May 10. We know that many international customers waiting to buy an iPad will be disappointed by this news, but we hope they will be pleased to learn the reason -- the iPad is a runaway success in the U.S. thus far."

Last week, when Apple unveiled iPhone OS 4, the company announced it had sold 450,000 iPads in the product's first five days of availability. Wednesday's announcement revealed that the product sold another 50,000 in the next two days, topping 500,000 in its first week. More than 300,000 of those sales came on the product's first day of availability.

In March, Apple first announced that the iPad would be available in international markets by the end of April. Both the Wi-Fi and 3G versions of the hardware were scheduled to launch in the U.K., Canada, France, Germany, Australia, Italy, Japan, Span and Switzerland. Wednesday's statement also kills rumors of an April 24 overseas debut.

The announcement from Apple on Wednesday also suggests that U.S. preorders for the 3G iPad are still on track for their late-April arrival. Those devices will be compatible with AT&T's 3G network and carry a $130 premium over their Wi-Fi-only counterparts.
post #2 of 129
Bugger...
post #3 of 129
Brilliant move.

Declaring unprecedented demand . . . in order to help drive up demand.

Apple's goodies sell themselves, I know, but this is smart.
post #4 of 129
Wow, that's great news. Oh well , I live in Canada. I should have expected that.
post #5 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple on Wednesday revealed that demand for the iPad is far higher than the company predicted, with more than a half-million U.S.-only sales in the first week. As a result, it has delayed the international launch of the iPad by one month.

Patience is virtue. Ready to order 3 and have entered May 10 on my iCal.

However, I may just be in the U.S. before then and with the Canadian dollar up above the U.S. $ now (and rising) I could be getting them sooner.

And cheaper.
post #6 of 129
The folks on the other side of the ponds won't be too happy but I guess better to have a shortage that a bunch of excess units collecting dust on the shelves.

I give it 30 days and they should have their production on a good ramp.

I wonder how many 3G's have been pre-ordered. Maybe more than expected also?
post #7 of 129
But I thought everyone wanted Flash? Why is demand so high for a product that doesn't do Flash?

(Probably because Flash isn't really that important after all, which must be eating away at Adobe. They can't stand to see their big internet Flash racket slowly erode before their eyes.)
post #8 of 129
I bought an iPad on the first day, I actually did not think this product would be this wildly accepted.
post #9 of 129
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I would not doubt it was a planned strategy. What do you do if not all of the press is so hot on your product. Sales being overshadowed by big brother the phone? Well pretend the opposite.

"Demand is beyond our wildest dreams! We can't keep up. Ah shucks, we have to go back to the barn and make some more."

Funny how Apple has always, I mean always had a supply problem. Ever since I can remember, back when I was replacing my Mac IIci with a Quadra 840av, Apple could never meet the demand. It always worked though. Demand was at least in part artificially created.

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post #10 of 129
This sucks ...

I'm so sad that once again those of us over here in UK are snubbed once again. It's not enough that we pay a hefty premium for the stuff, but we get an unequal share of the waiting time.
post #11 of 129
May is only half a month away, folks. It's not that long.

Not to worry.
post #12 of 129
It sounds like they received a larger percentage of orders for 3G models than they expected. It's a shame for the non-US buyers, but they'll get their iPads soon.
post #13 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Biffs View Post

This sucks ...

I'm so sad that once again those of us over here in UK are snubbed once again. It's not enough that we pay a hefty premium for the stuff, but we get an unequal share of the waiting time.

Lets see. Out of 6 billion people in the world 325 million get to be first in line.

How do you figure that you (UK'rs) are any more displaced that the rest of us?
post #14 of 129
Great the ipad is doing way better than expected!

But why follow it up with a comment that effectively points out that America is the priority Market as it is for everything Apple and everyone else should bask in Apples success to fully stock the US and not give anyone else a piece of the pie.

The worst bit is that when it does get released we know we will have to pay more for it too, late and more expensive the Apple international way!

Don't get me wrong, I understand supply issues, I really do, just don't make a comment about how we should be happy that only the US is getting the ipad due to high sales!
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post #15 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Biffs View Post

This sucks ...

I'm so sad that once again those of us over here in UK are snubbed once again. It's not enough that we pay a hefty premium for the stuff, but we get an unequal share of the waiting time.

Hey, we had to wait for those four lads from Liverpool to come to America. Turn around is fair play...

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post #16 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by techno View Post

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I would not doubt it was a planned strategy. What do you do if not all of the press is so hot on your product. Sales being overshadowed by big brother the phone? Well pretend the opposite.

"Demand is beyond our wildest dreams! We can't keep up. Ah shucks, we have to go back to the barn and make some more."

Funny how Apple has always, I mean always had a supply problem. Ever since I can remember, back when I was replacing my Mac IIci with a Quadra 840av, Apple could never meet the demand. It always worked though. Demand was at least in part artificially created.

I have a shorter memory. When the 13" MacBook Pro was announced last year, I hit the Boston store two days later. I told the kid, "no applecare, no add ons, just get me the computer." 5 minutes later I'm out the door, MacBook Pro in hand. No "artificial" supply problem here.
post #17 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by techno View Post

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I would not doubt it was a planned strategy. What do you do if not all of the press is so hot on your product. Sales being overshadowed by big brother the phone? Well pretend the opposite.

"Demand is beyond our wildest dreams! We can't keep up. Ah shucks, we have to go back to the barn and make some more."

Funny how Apple has always, I mean always had a supply problem. Ever since I can remember, back when I was replacing my Mac IIci with a Quadra 840av, Apple could never meet the demand. It always worked though. Demand was at least in part artificially created.

It's one thing to create the perception of short supply where none really exists, but this is a delay of an entire month for the international customers. That's like an eternity for the buyer who was ready to buy one on the spot. Now, instead of having to wait 2 more weeks, they have to wait 6. That's not something you want to do to your potential customers unless you have to. Hmm, doesn't sound like an artificial delay to me.
post #18 of 129
Bloody yanks...

By the way, limiting the manufacture of your product in order to drive up demand is not new, and by no means is Apple alone in doing so.
post #19 of 129
You really think that it's wise to do this when there is a real supply issue?
What is wrong with just letting everybody, as in world wide everybody, slow by slow get used to see iPads around you?
There either is a problem getting contracts signed internationally, or they are looking for international free attention before pushing iPads out into the wild wide world.
post #20 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by polarissucks View Post

Wow, that's great news. Oh well , I live in Canada. I should have expected that.

Interestingly, the Canadian website is the only one that hasn't been updated to reflect the new date (at least as of 9:15 EDT today). It still says, "Coming late April" on the homepage. The UK, French, and German sites have all been revised to show the new date.

Probably just an oversight, but maybe some faint hope for Apple's neighbours to the north?
post #21 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by techno View Post

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I would not doubt it was a planned strategy. What do you do if not all of the press is so hot on your product. Sales being overshadowed by big brother the phone? Well pretend the opposite.

"Demand is beyond our wildest dreams! We can't keep up. Ah shucks, we have to go back to the barn and make some more."

Funny how Apple has always, I mean always had a supply problem. Ever since I can remember, back when I was replacing my Mac IIci with a Quadra 840av, Apple could never meet the demand. It always worked though. Demand was at least in part artificially created.

I remember Palm Pre was in short supply when released, no? This helped Palm to kill the iPhone, right?
post #22 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by saarek View Post

But why follow it up with a comment that effectively points out that America is the priority Market as it is for everything Apple and everyone else should bask in Apples success to fully stock the US and not give anyone else a piece of the pie.

It has nothing to do with America beig the 'priority' market (although that has a nice ring to it...).

It is a familiar market. It is far easier to introduce a brand new product in one country -- e.g., no exchange rate issues, no new legal/language/distribution issues, only one set of agreements needed with media vendors, etc. etc -- than attempt a simultaneous global rollout. If there had been major glitches, it would have had a much wider repercussions in terms of negative publicity.

It is simply a question of "learn from one market, so that it can be done better, smoother in all markets."
post #23 of 129
Still no date, or even the -rumor- of one, for delivery of the 3G model?
post #24 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by NSUser View Post

Interestingly, the Canadian website is the only one that hasn't been updated to reflect the new date (at least as of 9:15 EDT today). It still says, "Coming late April" on the homepage. The UK, French, and German sites have all been revised to show the new date.

Probably just an oversight, but maybe some faint hope for Apple's neighbours to the north?

'Faint' is perhaps the right word!
post #25 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

'Faint' is perhaps the right word!

Indeed. Date just changed on the /ca site, too...
post #26 of 129
Now I far less silly for having driven down to Walden Galleria in Buffalo from the Waterloo area the night before launch and picking my 64GB iPad up the morning they launched in the US. Smug? Yes, perhaps a bit. Happy with my iPad? Hell, yeah!

Must mention this to my wife at lunch and gloat just a bit more.
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post #27 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by bosox View Post

I have a shorter memory. When the 13" MacBook Pro was announced last year, I hit the Boston store two days later. I told the kid, "no applecare, no add ons, just get me the computer." 5 minutes later I'm out the door, MacBook Pro in hand. No "artificial" supply problem here.

Having just gotten back from Worcester a couple of weeks ago, it is too bad that 'dialect' rather than 'region' was the basis for delaying the international introduction of the iPad.

But hey, I am not complaining. Must say though, that my wife and her American cousin did their best to keep me out of the Apple store in Natik. Fortunately for me, we drove the other way and ended up in Holyoke. And I got to buy another U.S. Gift Card

By the way, blowhard (), what was the last team beside the Yankees to keep the title of World Series Champion's for three years in a row?
post #28 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by NSUser View Post

Indeed. Date just changed on the /ca site, too...

They were just updating Canada last, it would seem..... ouch. \

But, hey, the US is not a far drive? And, the loonie is doing pretty well now?
post #29 of 129
YOU GOTTA BE F***ING KIDDING ME!! WTF APPLE?!?

i've been checking the website every 2 f***ing minutes hoping to see a "pre-order"-button and now this? god damn it..
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post #30 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

It has nothing to do with America beig the 'priority' market (although that has a nice ring to it...).

It is a familiar market. It is far easier to introduce a brand new product in one country -- e.g., no exchange rate issues, no new legal/language/distribution issues, only one set of agreements needed with media vendors, etc. etc -- than attempt a simultaneous global rollout. If there had been major glitches, it would have had a much wider repercussions in terms of negative publicity.

It is simply a question of "learn from one market, so that it can be done better, smoother in all markets."

Hmm, I don't fully agree with this since they were planning to start international distribution anyway, so all that would have already been accounted for. That is, if the demand in the U.S. weren't so high, they would have had to do all the stuff you mentioned anyway and were ready to do so, in fact.

I think it would have been better to start international distribution, start getting iPads out to international developers, start getting reviewed by international publications written by people who've held the iPad in their "international" hands, etc. All the U.S. publications, blogs (like this one), etc. have already touched, used and written about the iPad.

But what the heck do I know. Apple is master when it comes to marketing and rolling out a new product.
post #31 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukas View Post

YOU GOTTA BE F***ING KIDDING ME!! WTF APPLE?!?

i've been checking the website every 2 f***ing minutes hoping to see a "pre-order"-button and now this? god damn it..

Perhaps instead you should click on the "Notify me" button and wait for the e-mail instead.
post #32 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukas View Post

YOU GOTTA BE F***ING KIDDING ME!! WTF APPLE?!?

i've been checking the website every 2 f***ing minutes hoping to see a "pre-order"-button and now this? god damn it..

maybe you need something else to do
post #33 of 129
Is U.S. 3G iPad going to be different from the European models? If not, I would consider buying one when in NY in 2 weeks ...

It is likely Apple will have legal problems in Europe if they place hardware limitations to restrict the contract to one operator (as has happened with the iPhone, which is currently being sold by all operators in the UK and elsewhere in Europe).

More operators = obviously a lower plan cost and the benefit to consumers.
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post #34 of 129
Not surprised on this one, it's actually smart on a number of fronts. I would do a limited initial run, say 500,000, release it, and collect feedback from the Genius bar folks. This would verify the silicon, screens, battery's, etc.

It gives them a chance to make updates to the product before the next run.
post #35 of 129
One thing importers should know... the App Store application only works with a US iTunes accounts. You can still buy apps using iTunes on your desktop and then sync. You just can't access the App Store from your iPad.

One thing you cannot get from your non-US iTunes account is any of the Apple iPad apps (iBooks, Pages, Numbers, Keynote). If you need these, open a new iTunes account with a different email address using a pre-paid credit card with a US address.
post #36 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Brilliant move.

Declaring unprecedented demand . . . in order to help drive up demand.

Apple's goodies sell themselves, I know, but this is smart.

Yeah lets toss out the implication that they announced this just to make more demand. Riiiigggghht

Cause Apple needs to do something like that.

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post #37 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by techno View Post

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I would not doubt it was a planned strategy. What do you do if not all of the press is so hot on your product. Sales being overshadowed by big brother the phone? Well pretend the opposite.

"Demand is beyond our wildest dreams! We can't keep up. Ah shucks, we have to go back to the barn and make some more."

Funny how Apple has always, I mean always had a supply problem. Ever since I can remember, back when I was replacing my Mac IIci with a Quadra 840av, Apple could never meet the demand. It always worked though. Demand was at least in part artificially created.

You obviously know little about ramp up of a new product and what it takes to supply it. Companies don't deliberately order too little supply to create more demand. it is hard enough to know how many to order , let alone become a manipulator with a crystal ball as you so suggest.

my dear pundit, if you want a list of books to read about consumer electronics distribution in a fashion that will allow you too to predict the future in a better way, can i suggest you start with "innovators solution" "seeing what is next" and "smart world" .. these all will easily show you the patterns you describe are about as accurate as someone who doesn't have health insurance fighting the health care bill because it takes away their freedom.
post #38 of 129
Dam. I really want to try this thing out!

At the very least they could have announced pricing.
post #39 of 129
It's probably the combination of a lot of factors:
1) Real supply constraints (manufacturers were having problems)
2) Time to fix the Wi-Fi issue (and others?)
3) Waiting for some killer iPad apps to roll-out in other geographies (e.g. magazines, books)
4) Finish negotiating their content deals around the world based on the US "success"
5) Drive some more US/foreign press frenzy about "success"

Who knows, but I doubt that this has much downside risk (no other killer 'pads being released in May)
post #40 of 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukas View Post

YOU GOTTA BE F***ING KIDDING ME!! WTF APPLE?!?

i've been checking the website every 2 f***ing minutes hoping to see a "pre-order"-button and now this? god damn it..

buy me one and I'll ship you one. do you have paypal?
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