UPDATE 9:30am 16/03: PC Worlds are reporting stocks of iPads in stores, and all the branches we've seen have zero queue outside. Worth a punt if you're desperate to get one on day one.
The new Apple iPad is finally unleashed this Friday (16 March), but unsurprisingly the Apple Store has already run out of pre-order units. Unless you managed to survive Apple's overloaded website and get your pre-order in last week, chances are you'll have to brave enormous queues to nab one. Apple shops are reported to be opening at 8am, but people have already started to line up outside in anticipation, braving the taunts of amused onlookers to get the latest must-have tablet.
So where can you grab a new iPad, if you're desperate – but not that desperate – to get one asap? Lots of online stores are doing pre-orders, including Play.com and Tesco Online. In fact, Tesco was offering Apple's 64GB tablet for just £49.99 at first, thanks to a computer glitch, but has already stated it won't be honouring the unexpected deal. Of course, high demand means most online retailers are unable to give an exact delivery date, and chances are you'll be waiting another week or so before your shiny new iPad arrives.
Vodafone and Three are both advertising the new iPad on their websites, although you can't currently pre-order – just register to be told when the tablet's on sale. Branches will have limited stock, but are unlikely to have queues outside before opening, so get there early and you might be one of the lucky few.
Alternatively, you might be lucky enough to find one in your local PC World or John Lewis, which sold the iPad 2 from day one. We'd recommend calling ahead to check stock levels, to save yourself the bus fare.
Are you going to buy the new iPad, and if so, what's your plan of action? Leave us a comment and let us know, if you don't mind sharing your tactics of course!