Apple began selling its iPad Air, the new, thinner version of its 9.7in iPad, today, both online and in its retail stores. As the iPad Air sports the first external design change since the iPad 2 arrived in 2011, it's likely that it's been flying off the shelves. But will the iPad Air sell out? And where can you buy an iPad Air? Here's how you can get an iPad Air on launch day.

How to get an iPad Air in an Apple Store

You can head on down to an Apple Store to get your hands on a new iPad Air. Early this morning, customers braved the cold to queue for an iPad Air, but the queues now seem to have subsided and it looks like there are still iPad Airs left. We expect that you'll still be able to go to an Apple Store and pick up an iPad Air today.

Above: Covent Garden Store queue came to an end just before 9am, almost an hour after the store opened.

How to get an iPad Air online

Ordering online won't mean you'll have an iPad Air in your hands today, but it should mean that an iPad Air will be on its way to you in the post. Apple's online store is taking orders for the iPad Air now, and dispatch time for every model is still just 24 hours.

You'll need to head over to this webpage to buy the iPad Air.

Customers in the US are able to order their iPad Air online for in-store pickup, but UK customers don't have that option. So will need to go to a store to buy the iPad Air or order online for home delivery.

Customers in the US can use the Personal Pickup service to order an iPad Air for delivery to a local Apple Store.

See: The best new cases for iPad Air

Will the iPad Air sell out?

There's certainly a possibility that Apple will sell out of the iPad Air. Last year, when the original iPad mini was launched, it sold out within hours online.

However, Apple has warned that the new iPad mini may be in short supply when it is released later in November, but hasn't said this about the iPad Air, suggesting that inventory of the iPad Air is solid. Plus, as of 10.22am on 1 November, almost all of the iPad Air models have a dispatch time of 24 hours. The only model that's showing a later dispatch time of 5-10 business days is the 128GB Silver iPad Air with WiFi + Cellular.

In September, Apple released its iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c. The iPhone 5s sold out very quickly, with both online and offline stores selling out within hours. However, the iPhone 5c had enough stock for everyone to choose exactly the colour and capacity combination they were after.

With the iPad Air being more of a refresh than in previous years, what with the lighter, thinner design, it's likely that demand for the new tablet will be stronger in previous years. Plus, many of those with an iPad 2 are likely to be considering an upgrade now that their iPad is a couple of years old. We'll update this article when we find out more about the iPad Air's availability.

See: What people hate about the Apple iPad Air

What people love about the Apple iPad Air

Where else can you buy an iPad Air in the UK?

it's not just Apple that'll be selling the iPad Air. Apple Authorised Resellers and some phone carriers are also selling the iPad Air.

PC World has begun selling the iPad Air online and in store. Three, Vodafone and EE have also begun selling the iPad Air. Carphone Warehouse and Tesco are selling the iPad Air, as is Argos. Plus, John Lewis opened its stores at 8am to sell the iPad Air.

See also:

iPad Air vs iPad 2 comparison review

iPad Air vs iPad 4 comparison review