Apple has announced that, in addition to Apple Retail Stores, the new iPad will also be available for purchase on Friday, March 16 at Best Buy, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, Target, and Walmart in the US.
It's unknown if third party retailers will be opening at 8am local time for the launch, like Apple Retail Stores will be, or how well stocked they'll be. If there's an Apple Retail Store near you, you're probably better off going there despite the chances of longer lines. They'll almost certainly have more stock and the sheer quantity of staff on hand level of service is typically far, far superior to your average big box retailer. You'll also have free setup help and support to get you going faster.
If you don't have an Apple Retail Store anywhere near you, then Best Buy, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, Target, and Walmart are great options if you want to pick your iPad up in person in case you missed out on pre-orders, or just don't care for online shopping.
If you're lining up, let us know where!
See you Friday!