High Street welcomes the iPad

Retailers have braced themselves for an iPad sales rush as the potentially lucrative device goes on sale in the UK for the first time today.

Video games have become a major selling point for Apple’s latest touch-screen unit – with hundreds of titles available to download from the App Store direct to the device.

The gadget is priced from 429 for the 16GB Wi-Fi model to 699 for the 64GB 3G version.

Confirmed UK iPad stockists include PC World, Amazon, Dixons, Currys, Play.com and Apple, with Argos planning to sell the device from September.

The likes of GAME, Gamestation and HMV have all told MCV that they are interested in stocking the new tablet computer. HMV will sell accessories for the device.

GAME previously ran a promotion on its website providing information about the iPad, but could not confirm or deny whether it would be stocking the device.

HMV’s technology products manager Ricky Gordon told MCV: As the UK’s leading outlet for iPod accessories we’ll certainly be looking to stock this item if we possibly can.

However, we’re mindful of the huge demand that will exist for the iPad among a broad range of competing retailers, and the challenge this will present to Apple.

So whether we can secure some stock in its first wave of release or whether we have to wait a little while is hard to say, but I feel sure it will only be a matter of time before we do. It’s a product we’d love to make available to customers.”

A spokesperson for Argos said: I can confirm Argos plans to sell the iPad from September 2010.

Like other retailers in the same position, this is still subject to Apple so we aren’t in a position to be commenting on a product that we do not currently stock.”

Specialist games retailers Grainger Games and ShopTo.net have told MCV they will not be stocking the gadget.

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