LIVE BLOG: Apple’s iPad hits stores

Reuters reporters take a peek inside the iPad to reveal its design and components, and bring you news from Apple stores around the country.

And the first iPad goes to…

ipad launch…this guy in the hat. Sitting among Saturday strollers on New York’s Fifth Ave. He’s one of the 10 or so sitting in front of the Apple Store more than 18 hours before it will open for the first day of iPad sales. Oops, it looks like the ad on his hat is not the only surprise of the day. Sorry MediaFile readers, we only report the news. Sorry it wasn’t the cute kid on the left.

Check out out live blog from the iPad launch today, which includes reports from Apple stores and a teardown of the tablet computer.

But this is not unusual for this store. People love to wait in line for these devices. This picture is from the same store in 2007. Is that the same guy? And yes, that a human in a bear suit.

What makes an iPad tick? These guys will tell you

Come Saturday, while many of you are enjoying your new iPad — doing a little e-reading, perhaps playing a game — Kyle Wiens and Luke Soules will be ripping theirs apart.  Not because they are crazy or angry or anti-Apple. No, Wiens and Soules do this for a living: breaking down gadgets using heat guns, suction cups and other tools to get inside and have a look around. What do they find out? The design and components that make it tick. Read all about it in a Special Report by Gabriel Madway.

Below are the guys who will make the magic happen, plus a shot of their workshop.

iFixit founders2

iFixit office

What will the iPad mean for publishers? – a few opinions

Interview magazine april_cover_V2a

We have out a piece which looks  at the hopes and ambitions of  traditional publishers of newspapers,  magazines and books  in the run-up to the unveiling of Apple’s  long-awaited iPad tablet device on Saturday. The consensus seems to be that the iPad will be a great boost for the industry.  Pictured above is the April issue of Interview magazine‘s version which will be available for 99 cents on launch day.

Here are a few more thoughts we couldn’t get into the  piece:

What does the iPad mean for Amazon’s Kindle?

Brian Murray, CEO Harper Collins:

“People love their Kindle but I think there’s room in the market for both a dedicated book reader like the Kindle, Sony Reader or (Barnes & Noble’s) Nook. But there’s room for a single device that can accommodate books, magazines, and newspapers and surfing the Internet like the iPad. My view is the price of the Kindle,Nook and Sony Reader is going to drop dramatically I suspect to under $100 so there will be a market for certain.”

John Makinson CEO Penguin Books:

“I don’t think there’s likely to be one dominant provider because the Kindle is a very competitive platform.”

IPad pre-orders begin, and so does the speculation

ipadApple began accepting pre-orders for the iPad tablet this morning, around three weeks ahead of the April 3 launch date in the U.S.  Only the WiFi version of the tablet will be available on that date, with the 3G version shipping later in April.

Apple is limiting pre-orders to two devices per customer, which one prominent Apple blog said suggested the company is stretched thin on supply. Analysts over the past two weeks have noted some hiccups in iPad production.

Here’s Oppenheimer & Co analyst Yair Reiner in a research note earlier this week:

IPad makes prime-time TV debut

America got its first prime-time peek at Apple’s latest gadget on Sunday night, as the company rolled out its first TV commercial for the iPad during the 82nd Academy Awards ceremony.

No surprise, it was a visually slick, 30-second montage of everything the iPad can do, with a finger-snapping soundtrack provided by Danish group The Blue Van. YouTube Preview Image

But Steve Jobs wasn’t on his couch back in Silicon Valley watching it; he evidently journeyed down to Southern California to catch the Oscars in person, and was not too shy to pose for a pic with a fan.

IPad launch delay? Analyst says “bottleneck” impacting production

ipadMight Apple fans have to wait another full month to get his or her hands on the company’s latest and greatest device, the iPad? It’s possible, according to Canaccord Adams analyst Peter Misek.

He said the iPad launch, currently expected in late March, may be “somewhat limited” by an unspecified “manufacturing bottleneck” at the device’s manufacturer, Hon Hai Precision. That could make the launch a U.S.-only event and limit available units to 300,000 in March–which might even prompt Apple to delay the debut until April, Misek said.

That sort of delay would not augur well for the so-called “third category” device, where the strength of consumer demand is still uncertain.

Apple blocks iPad shipment info, report says

ipadpicApple is apparently leaving nothing to chance when it comes to protecting information about its soon-to-be-released iPad tablet computer.

According to a new report by Trade Privacy LLC, a trade data protection company, Apple has blocked all of its ocean freight import records from public view as the company prepares for the much bally-hooed launch of the iPad.  Apple’s trade data is inaccessible from U.S. Customs, the group said.

“As the arrival of Apple’s new iPad approaches, industry competitors as well as the media will be unable to acquire early intelligence on arriving Apple products from overseas manufacturers,” Trade Privacy said in a press release.

Timeline: iPad joins list of Apple product milestones

apple two steves aThe iPad is just the latest in decades of big milestones and product introductions for Apple and its CEO Steve Jobs.

Here’s a quick list:

Apple LisaHigh school buddies, and dropouts, Steven Wozniak and Steven Jobs found Apple Computer. Their first product, Apple I, built in circuit board form, debuts at “the Homebrew Computer Club” in Palo Alto, California, to little fanfare.

The company unveils the Apple II, perhaps the first personal computer in a plastic case with color graphics. It is a big hit.

No-nonsense, and no names, at Apple iPad event

Apple has a reputation for developing hit products.

But the company also has a rep for maintaining an iron grip on its image and its message. Wednesday’s launch of the iPad, a product whose details have been closely guarded by Apple for months ahead of the launch, showed Apple’s operation at its best.

To the surprise of many, Apple CEO Steve Jobs turned up at the demo room after the main event and appeared to be casually hobnobbing with Wall Street Journal tech columnist Walt Mossberg.

IPADEVENT1But the scene was hardly the impromptu, open conversation it appeared.

Most of the people gathered around Jobs and Mossberg were not fellow reporters hunting for a quote, but a squad of no-nonsense, plain-clothed Apple staffers who had formed a human cordon around their leader. The only other person allowed within the safe zone was Mossberg, and any reporters who attempted to get near were physically blocked and pushed back.