Apple's Australian iPad Plans Still Unclear

It's due for release in late March, but Apple's plans for the iPad in the Australian market still remain unclear, with few local telcos willing to confess to being engaged in active conversation with the company.

While the front page of Apple's Australian web site boasts that the iPad will appear at an "an unbelievable price", the actual product page simply repeats the established line that local pricing hasn't been finalised.

Despite that, Apple says Wi-Fi models will ship in Australia in March, followed by 3G models in April. But what services will be offered on the 3G version is an open question.

Tim Lohman at Computerworld quizzed the main local players about their iPad plans. Telstra and Optus said they hoped to offer the device but had no concrete information, while Vodafone and Virgin had nothing to say at all.

Secrecy is nothing new for Apple, so it's quite likely that similar comments would be made even if the companies in question were engaged in daily negotiation. On the other hand, those same telcos were very quick to boast that they'd happily adapt the micro-SIM format used in the iPad.)

Whatever the final price and telco specs, we already know that e-books for the device won't be sold in Australia, which knocks out one of the main use cases. Concerns about lock-in are unlikely to dissuade the first wave of iPad adopters, but whether it can succeed locally with a reduced feature set and unclear 3G options remains to be seen.

Aussie Telcos still waiting on Apple for iPad details [Computerworld]


    Ask a silly question. Why should the Ipad be sold by telcos at all. Just because it contains a 3G chip?

    I understand the joy of bundling and paying off a contract but how many people would really be satisfied with having to be tied to a 1st gen Ipad for two years?

    This is not a device u would want to leave the house. I see it as primarily an entertainment and convenience device, akin to a magazine that sits on the coffee table.

    Kindle is already available on the iPhone, as well as ereader and other book readers, so surely these will extend to the iPad?

    e-books can already be bought and read on the iPhone through other suppliers, e.g., who have already shown that the iPad will be supported, just because Apple are a little slow off the mark doesn't mean e-books aren't available for the iPad. I'm getting an iPad so I can read my e-books on a larger device :)

    If anything we should get a discount because its not going to have the same features of those shipped in the USA, as the ibook feature is not available then we would be forced to use the kindle app, which is ok unless Apple remove that.

    I agree with David. My general sentiments about the iPad aside, the less the release of any such device has to do with profit-gouging telcos, the better.

    What's the bet people won't be able to tether their iPads over wifi to their 3G capable iPhones?

    This, as has been discussed before - is not what people were expecting. This will go the way of the Apple TV - Another item with much promise that does nothing.

    Sadly, the e-book facility is undoubtedly being held up by the pecuniary interests of the paper book peddlers who have failed to recognise the ease of use, the price disparity (huge!) and the obvious popularity of the download system. Can't wait to be able to read my book in low-light situations... The govt must act soon to get this happening - we are way behind other countries.

    I hate how so called 'journalists' spread the wrong information.
    Maybe not out of the box in march, but as soon as Apple finalise pricing agreements etc with local publishers, it will be available. Will you have to buy a new iPad to get ibooks store?? No. It will arrive free in a software update -simple! Same thing happened with the iTunes store- it took a little bit of time to arrive internationally.

      Apple's announcement states quite unambiguously that iBookstore will be US only at launch. Yes, I'd expect negotiations will happen for international release, but anyone buying an iPad in Australia at launch won't have an ebooks buying option to start with. Australia got the iTunes store two years after the US -- that's more than "a little bit of time".

        Ok fair cop.. its just your article said- "we already know that e-books for the device won’t be sold in Australia.." -Which seems to imply that iBooks won't be available here 'ever'. Other comments seemed to assume this as fact. But its clear that iBooks will come to Aus eventually be it in 2 months or 2 years..
        PS apologies for the 'journalist' crack- i just get frustrated with all the talk and speculation, when all will be revealed in time. (When? in 60 days from the January Launch = late March.) Not much longer

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now