Whether you were among the masses reading live blogs on Apple’s March 2nd iPad announcement, or whether you are just replacing your original iPad, or perhaps are even excitedly about to purchase your first iPad, We’ve got the details you need to help you decide where and how to purchase your iPad 2.
Those of you looking to buy an iPad 2 on or near launch day have a number of options. Each of the following retailers will be offering the iPad 2 at their physical stores at 5 PM PST on March 11.
- Apple Retail Store
- AT&T Retail Store (but not “authorized resellers”, so watch out.”
- Verizon Wireless Store(but again, not authorized resellers.”
- Best Buy
Apple Retail Store Versus Everyone Else
The Apple Retail Store is generally going to be your best bet for being able to obtain an iPad 2 on launch day. The Apple stores have the longest lines, but also are the least likely to run out of product. In addition, future problems with your iPad and potential returns tend to be much less of a headache if you purchase from Apple directly. Lines can take a number of hours to get through, so be sure you have the time if you go this route.
Purchasing from other stores, such as Target, Best Buy, and Walmart can also be feasible options, but these stores often receive very limited stock. Best Buy, with it;s growing partnership with Apple, is likely to have more iPads available than Wal-Mart or Target. Additionally, if you live in a smaller town, or are able to get to another retailer that doesn’t have a very high volume of customers, you may be able to get one more quickly and easily.
AT&T and Verizon Stores
Those of you that will be purchasing 3G-enabled models may be able to buy a device directly from an official AT&T or Verizon corporate-managed retail store. The advantage to this may be shorter lines as well. Further, some customers who buy their iPad data plan through their business will be able to set it up right in the store. Apple has not always been able to set up iPads and iPhones on corporate accounts, while they can always do so with consumer accounts.
In addition, a number of online stores will have the iPad 2, which you’ll be able to order starting at 1 AM PST on March 11.
- Apple Online Store
- Etc (there are very few differences between ordering online from different places)
Online Versus In Person
There are a number of things to consider when purchasing online, including whether or not you have to pay sales tax, shipping speed, shipping costs, reputability, and so forth. Your best and safest bet will be to purchase from the Apple Online Store, but other reputable sites such as BestBuy.com and MacMall.com are also good choices. In addition, stores like MacMall.com offer tax-free purchasing for people in most states.
In the end, the decision is yours, and there are a lot of factors you may want to consider. We want to hear from you! If you’ll be buying an iPad 2, will you be buying online or from a physical store? Where will you be buying? Why? Sound off in the comments!