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Three Million New iPads Sold over the Weekend
Worldwide marketing chief Philip Schiller called it a “blockbuster – the strongest iPad launch yet”

After Apple said early Monday that it would start paying a $10.60-a-year dividend and buy back stock to spend down its massive cash horde - something some people say Steve Jobs would never have done - and after its stock closed at over $600 for the first time ever - you watching this up there, Steve - the company put a figure on the initial sales of the new iPad, something it wouldn't do during the dividend call. It said it sold three million of the slabs since they went on sale Friday.

Worldwide marketing chief Philip Schiller called it a "blockbuster - the strongest iPad launch yet."

The thing is currently available in 11 major markets from the US to Hong Kong and Germany and will be available in 24 other countries by this Friday.

That'll make it available throughout Europe, Mexico and New Zealand.

UBS did some checking and found that 46% of the folks in a line to get the tablet in New York last Friday weren't trading up. They were buying their first iPad. Another 38% were replacing the original iPad. The investment house reckons Apple will move at least 12 million new iPads by the end of the month when the quarter ends. All depends on supplies.

Apple didn't say how many of the re-priced iPad 2s it was moving. They now start at a more affordable $399, down from $499 to start.

The cost of the new iPad isn't any cheaper for Apple. iSuppli tore the thing down over of the weekend and said it's costing Apple $375.10 to make, 9% more than the iPad 2 although the retail prices are the same for the 32GB model.

The bill of material, includes the pricey new retina displays, runs up to $408.70 for the top-of-the-line 64GB 4G LTE model. It costs Apple $316 in parts to make the entry-level 16GB device with no LTE.

Others teardowns found that not all the components are coming from the same suppliers, which protects Apple against such crises as the floods in Thailand.

Usually sensible analysts are saying Apple's stock could go to $700 or $800 on the strength of the redesigned iPhone 5 expected in October.

About Maureen O'Gara
Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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