Today is the day! Apple has launched two new iPad models in a total of 34 countries. That makes it the largest product launch ever for the Cupertino company.
The 7.9-inch iPad mini and 9.7-inch fourth-generation iPad debuted in what Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets called Apple’s “broadest and deepest iPad launch ever, just in time for the holidays.” In comparison, the third-generation iPad debuted in 12 countries this March, while the iPad 2 launched exclusively in the U.S. in 2011.
As well as the U.S., the iPad mini launched Friday in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.K.
The 16GB iPad mini is expected to sell out quickly, in particular the white and silver model. (Apple’s online store sold out of all of its capacities of white and silver models just hours after preorders began last Friday.)
White expects Apple will sell between 800,000 and a million iPad mini units over this launch weekend. Demand is expected to outstrip supply.
The 4th-generation iPad, which is also being released this weekend, should have a supply that will come closer to demand this weekend.
White’s numbers for the mini are slightly less than Gene (Herman is not my brother) Munster of Piper Jaffray has predicted. Munster has stated he believes Apple will sell between a million and 1.5 million iPad mini’s during the weekend.
As a comparison, Apple sold 3 million units of the 3rd-generation iPad when it launched in March of this year. The main difference this weekend from last March? The mini 4G LTE capable models will not be available this weekend. Those won’t launch until later this month. (That’s what I’m waiting for, or I’d already have an iPad mini in my hot little hand…)
Check out our complete launch coverage for all of the details, as well as guides and information for the new iPads!”