updated 07:55 am EST, Mon November 22, 2010
KT carrying iPad Nov 30 with 60,000 pre-orders
South Korean carrier KT today said it would sell the iPad on November 30. The Apple tablet will unusually have the option of a subsidy and will start at the equivalent of $192 for a 16GB 3G iPad with a two-year, 2GB per month data contract. Wi-Fi versions will also be on sale starting at about $559 contract-free.
Demand has been high for the iPad, which has already managed 60,000 pre-orders in the five days since pre-orders began. KT has estimated that it could sell 200,000 iPads in the one month of sales before the end of the year.
The arrival will be a symbolic one for Apple, which faced regulatory delays but is also entering the home territory of the companies that should be the iPad's biggest rivals. Samsung's Galaxy Tab went on sale just last week and may outsell the iPad, as the Korea-native company estimates that it should have sold 150,000 of the Android slates by the time Apple's hardware is on sale. Numbers could get a late kick in mid-December once LG Telecom begins carrying its own subsidized Galaxy Tab.
SK Telecom, the preferred Galaxy Tab carrier, is nonetheless said to be negotiating for the iPad and could get one should Apple have a version with EVDO needed for its network.
LG's electronics wing will be one of the next major contenders and should release the Optimus Pad early next year running Android 3.0. It has been one of the quieter contenders and just today launched its first Windows 7 tablet, the E-Note H1000B, using the nearly year-old 1.6GHz Atom Z530.
KT itself became impatient during the wait for the iPad and launched its own tablet, the Identity Tab. Its sales haven't been publicly touted and are likely to be overshadowed quickly by Apple's model. [via Korea Times]