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Apple's iPad debuts in stores

Sina Azmoudeh of Dallas TX sits near the front of the line at the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue on the eve of the April 3rd release of the new Apple iPad in New York City on April 2, 2010. UPI/John Angelillo
Sina Azmoudeh of Dallas TX sits near the front of the line at the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue on the eve of the April 3rd release of the new Apple iPad in New York City on April 2, 2010. UPI/John Angelillo | License Photo

NEW YORK, April 3 (UPI) -- Saturday is the day people across the United States get their first chance to grab Apple Inc.'s new mobile browser, the iPad.

Retailers were gearing up for the large crowds they expected. The Wall Street Journal reported some stores, including Apple's flagship store in Manhattan, had set up barriers outside. Best Buy Co. was issuing tickets to customers waiting in line to buy iPads, the business newspaper said.

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The Journal said the crowds might be smaller than those that gathered for previous Apple products like the iPhone, however, because the company began taking pre-orders March 12 with units being shipped directly to customers' homes.

Initially, iPad buyers will only be able to get on the Internet through Wi-Fi hookups, with 3G technology becoming available late this month.

Apple hasn't projected how many iPads it expects to sell but likely is hoping Mike Jung of Chester, N.H., is a typical customer.

"I absolutely have to have it," the 45-year-old lawyer and Apple junkie told the Journal.

Research firm iSuppli Corp. predicts 7.1 million iPads will fly off store shelves worldwide this year, with sales increasing to 20.1 million by 2012.

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