In both Singapore and Hong Kong the demand for the iPad was very strong as it went on sale this Friday. In New Zealand initial demand seems to have been weaker as there was no clear information available on where the device would be available.
In Hong Kong many people coming into stores to try to get a shiny new iPad were disappointed in finding that the best they could do was to put their names into multi-page waiting lists. It seems that Apple’s Hong Kong resellers have no issues with people who want to buy large quantities of iPads, as they don’t seem to have problems in dispatching batches of iPads to neighboring countries in which the iPad isn’t yet available.
As described in a post on one of the Wall Street Journal’s blogs, a Hong Kong reseller is shipping large batches of iPads for sale in other regions of mainland China and Vietnam, where the device hasn’t yet been made officially available. This has left no iPads for the locals coming into the stores to purchase them just as they were released. Those who leave their names in waiting lists will have to wait quite a bit for the chance to get an iPad as that same store, for example, doesn’t expect to have any more iPads available for several weeks.
In New Zealand there was some confusion as to where the iPad would be available as it seems that the local Apple office didn’t make any information available. It seems that it wasn’t clear even in what cities there would be resellers carrying the iPad and in the end it turned out that it was available only the following cities: Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Queenstown, despite the general expectation that it would be available nationwide.
This general lack of information made for small lines in the shops that were carrying the iPad. From the descriptions I have been able to find so far, New Zealand might have had the slowest iPad launch to date.