Apple Retail Stores opening at 8am for new iPad launch on Friday, March 16

Apple has announced that the new iPad will be going on sale at Apple Retail Stores on Friday, March 16 at 8am local time in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland and the UK; along with Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

Every customer who buys a new iPad at an Apple retail store will be offered free Personal Setup service, helping them customize their iPad by setting up email, loading new apps from the App Store and more, so they’ll be up and running with their new iPad before they leave the store. Personal Pickup, available at Apple retail stores in the US and a feature of the free Apple Store app, lets iPad customers shop and buy from anywhere they are, then pick up their purchase at any Apple retail store.

Apple Online Stores will also have the new iPad available for order -- as opposed to pre-order -- at 8am on Friday, March 16. Given the pre-order sellouts, however, it's unknown what the availability or shipping estimates will be.

Several of us from iMore will be lining up on Friday (and giving away free, special edition iMore t-shirts). Leanna, as well as Kevin Michaluk, Gary Mazo, and the Mobile Nations Miami team will also be at their local Apple Stores. If you're lining up, let us know where!

Also let us know which new iPad you're getting, and if you having trouble deciding, check out our 2012 iPad buyers guide.

See you Friday!

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, ZEN and TECH, MacBreak Weekly. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter, App.net, Google+.

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There are 23 comments. Add yours.

Glenn#IM says:

Good luck. If you have the Apple store app on your iPhone, use that. It seems to work well. I ordered one on the 7th. Is was in China, went to HongKong, Alaska, and now is resting in Kentucky. Will get to me on the 16th according to UPS. This will be my first iPad. 32G WiFi only. My 4S can be a hot spot.

Sancho90 says:

Son of a crap...
I was hoping for a 5pm release like last time. I wanted some time with a demo unit before I potentially bought one.
Oh well, let's hope I there will still be some available when I get off work at 9am.
Good luck to all that decide to line up!

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MaicolGO says:

Well I'll be lining up, see if I can get a 64GB, Black ATT one, tried ordering it online and it was sold out

HDo says:

Im gonna wait until I can do store pickup on the Apple app.

dandbj13 says:

I was first in line for the iPad 2. I was one of the fire to preorder this time around. No overnight camping for me. :)

swest says:

Mine has been in Louisville, KY at UPS since 3/10. Thats ridiculous just so they can make a event out of it on the 16th. Silly!

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HFACE119 says:

What is the difference? They could have not done preorders, forcing you to wait til the 16th or AFTER to get one. It's the release date. Just deal.

lollywood says:

I've tracked mine on Apple, but how do u guys know all the exact locations of your delivery, tried typing different order/reference numbers in but no luck...

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