Special: iPad 2 Sales Begin

Posted on March 11, 2011

Unlike iOS 4.3, GarageBand for iOS, and iMovie for iOS, Apple didn’t release the iPad 2 early. With the iPad 2 going on sale online in only a few hours and in a plethora of stores (Best Buy, Target, Walmart, Sam’s Club, AT&T, Verizon) this evening, people are gearing up for a rather exciting product launch.

We’ll be periodically updating this to share any exciting new items throughout the day, and also an overall look at the product launch. Check back here or our Twitter feed for the latest.

12AM EST: Macworld has put together a great guide on the iPad 2 launch, what models are available, and where you can get it.

1AM EST: A number of Walmarts have the iPads in display cases, but hand-written or paper signs that they will not be available until 5PM. Reports have said that trying to buy the device only will cause the register to alert the cashier that it is not available for purchase yet. First-generation models have been marked down by $100, and first-generation-specific accessories have seen no price change.

10:30AM EST: As the iPad has been available for order for awhile, it now seems all models are on a 2-3 week wait for shipping. You can get Smart Cover earlier and pretend by holding it on your original iPad or your MacBook.

11:30AM EST: For the sake of completeness, Best Buy has an FAQ about iPad purchases. They will use a ticket system to ensure that everyone (hopefully) can get one that should, and then try to sell you some Geek Squad service plan. MacRumors has the breakdown of all the major retailers:

  • Apple Stores: No in-store reservations, on sale 5PM local time
  • Best Buy: Tickets handed out at 4:30PM local time, on sale 5PM local time, 3G models only at stores with “Apple areas”, limiting 2 per customer
  • Walmart/Target: Nothing special lined up, other than the 5pm purchase time
  • AT&T/Verizon: AT&T’s online orders begin at 4AM EST (same as Apple), while store have it on sale at 5PM local time, no activation fees

4:35PM EST: We’re at a local Best Buy near Indianapolis and there is a healthy-sized line (wrapped around a few aisles), with tickets already given out. No iPad 2 accessories on display yet, nor are iPad 1 accessories marked down.

March 12 — 10:45AM EST: The Best Buy that we were at yesterday has been pretty cleaned out—there are only grey and cream-colored Smart Covers left, a few Dock Connector-to-HDMI adapters, but plenty of marked-down iPad 1s. Our local Walmart reported that they “sold out in the first 5 minutes,” but that was out of 6 units the store received. They also have a number of 32GB and 64GB WiFi iPad 1s. Another Walmart had 12 and also sold out relatively quickly. Both still have an array of Smart Covers and iPad 1s.

This post has been filed in News and Special Coverage