Apple has officially announced that the iPad will be available in the US on Saturday, 3 April for the Wi-Fi only model and in late April for the more expensive Wi-Fi + 3G model. From 12 March, US customers will be able to pre-order both Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + 3G models from Apple’s online store or reserve a Wi-Fi model to pick up on 3 April instore.
UK buyers will have to wait till late April to pick up an iPad. Apple has announced that both the Wi-Fi and 3G iPad models will be available in the UK, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland in late April.
The UK Apple website is still showing the original release dates: "Wi-Fi models shipping in late March. 3G models shipping in April. UK pricing to be announced."
Those hoping that Apple would confirm UK pricing for the iPad sooner, rather than later, will be disappointed. Apple mentions in this latest press release that international pricing will now be announced in April.
The iPad will ship in additional countries later this year, Apple adds.
Macworld UK originally estimated a launch price of £388 for the iPad. Following another drop in the value of sterling we have now adjusted this figure.
Macworld UK now estimates the following UK pricing for the iPad at launch:
iPad Wi-Fi: £417 (16GB); £500 (32GB); £584 (64GB)
Wi-Fi + 3G: £526 (16GB); £610 (32GB); £693 (64GB)
Those figures are based on the current US exchange rate against the current rate of sterling which is now $1.50 for every £1, plus 17.5 per cent VAT (Value Added Tax - the UK term for sales tax - this is included with the price in the UK, but excluded from the price in the US) plus an extra 7 per cent. This is the amount we judge Apple charges extra in the UK over the US. This is the: "it just costs a little bit more to do business here, move stuff around, service product and so on" rate that Apple's CEO Steve Jobs spoke to us about during the original iPhone launch in the UK. You can watch the video of Steve Jobs talking about price differences here.
Judging by the delay from Apple in announcing official UK pricing we would assume that the Cupertino-based company is waiting to gauge the value of sterling in the UK as close to launch as possible before committing to a price point.