Some new artwork which has been photographed by a 9to5Mac source seems to state that Apple Retail Stores will be opening early on March 16 for the launch of the new iPad. This confirms information that we received on March 9th suggesting that Apple would be putting special arrangements in place for the launch and that Retail Stores would be opening early, both on the day of the launch and, from what we are hearing, possibly several days after as shipments continue to arrive.
This arrangement echoes the launch of the iPad 2 in which we discovered that some Apple retail stores were choosing to open one hour early, although it was an arrangement decided by the stores themselves rather than an overarching policy set in place by Apple.
The launch of the new iPad is likely to be just as popular as the iPad 2 with Apple reporting that pre-order stocks of the new iPad were already wiped out. For those people who didn’t pre-order one and are looking to get hold of one on launch day or thereabouts, the Apple Stores, and some third party sellers, are likely to be the only way.