You’ll have to get up early if you want to buy the new iPad from your local Apple Store this Friday.
Apple on Wednesday announced that Apple Store iPad sales would start at 8 a.m. local time in the United States and nine other countries on Friday. That’s a bit of a change from last year’s release of the iPad 2, which occurred at 5 p.m. local time in the United States. The earlier launch time makes it more likely you’ll see pictures of iPad-hungry campers waiting in line outside stores overnight Thursday.
If you haven’t already ordered your new iPad online, buying the device directly from a retail store will be your best option for a launch-day purchase: Apple’s online store has already sold out of pre-order iPads—you’ll now have to wait two to three weeks for your online order to arrive. In the United States, the new iPad will also be available at Best Buy, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, Target, and Walmart.
Other countries where the iPad goes on sale Friday: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, and the U.K. The device will also be available that day in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Customers in a number of other countries will have to wait until March 23 to make their purchase. That’s when the iPad goes on sale in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macau, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.
The new iPad starts at $499 for the 16GB model, and is available in both black and white. iPads with LTE and 3G cellular options start at $629, and are available with either AT&T or Verizon service. Among the device’s new features are a Retina display, voice dictation support, a much-improved rear-facing camera, and a speedier A5X processor.