People in 9 More Countries Wait in Line for Apple iPad Launch

Submitted by lalit on July 24, 2010 - 4:56pm.

Apple launched iPad in 9 more countries this Friday and like in US people waited in lines to get their hands on the new device. iPad was launched in Austria, Belgium, Hong Kong, Ireland, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand and Singapore. Reports are that lines started forming well before the stores were opened and iPads were sold out within minutes after opening. In Hong Kong’s City Plaza Shopping Centre all 180 iPads were sold within 30 minutes and people started lining up as early as 6:30 AM.

In all the nine countries where iPad was launched this Friday, iPad stock sold out within first few hours and stores have started taking reservations for next lot that would come later this month. With this kind of demand for the iPad many have questioned why Apple hasn’t increased production to meet the demand? Statement from LG Display’s CEO Kwon Young-soo might shed some light on the issue. While talking about iPad display he said, “we are at full capacity, but demand (from Apple) keeps growing and we can’t meet it all.”

“Overall supply is likely to remain tight until early next year,” Kwon said. LG is investing $500 million to increase production of displays for mobile phones and tablets and aim to meet target by second quarter of 2011. Meanwhile, Apple has also contracted Samsung for 9.7-inch LCD screen, which Samsung will start shipping by end of this quarter. So iPad supply should improve before holiday season.

In other iPad related news, analyst Marianne Wolk of Susquehanna Financial Group estimates that iPad has already surpassed the estimated ownership base of Amazon Kindle. Marianne wrote, “Last night, Apple stated it has shipped 3.27 million iPads since the April product launch, surpassing our estimate for an installed base of around 3 million Amazon Kindles to date despite supply constraints.”

Amazon launched Kindle in November 2007 almost three years back and it took just three months for iPad to reach bigger install base than Kindle. No wonder Amazon offers more features on Kindle app for iPad than on their own Kindle device.