New iPad Online Availability Improves

Shipping delays for online orders of Apple's new iPad have dropped, with estimates falling to 1-2 weeks from the point of order. The new third-gen tablet had until this morning been listed as carrying a 2-3 week delay at the official Apple Store, after strong demand from pre-orders opening on March 16 saw stocks constrained. In the US, however, all WiFi and WiFi + 4G models are now down to 1-2 weeks, though international availability varies.

In the UK, for instance, WiFi-only new iPad units are down to 1-2 weeks as well, but the cellularly-enabled versions are still showing 2-3 week delivery windows. The situation is the same in Germany and France.

Yesterday, Apple announced that it had sold 3m new iPads in the opening weekend, setting a new record for the company's tablets. In contrast, the original iPad took almost a month to reach 1m unit sales. However, Apple's profit margin on each new iPad is less than before, with more expensive components such as the high-resolution Retina Display and LTE radio pushing up the bill of materials (BOM) cost.

Apple will put the new iPad on sale in a further 24 countries from this Friday, expanding availability of the tablet to a total of 34 countries. More information in our full review and in the SlashGear Apple Hub.