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iPad to launch in April

US release will be April 3; UK to get device later in the month

Apple has announced the iPad will go on sale in the US on April 3 and in the UK in late April.

The US will see the release of the Wi-Fi model at the start of April, but will have to wait until late April for the Wi-Fi and 3G iPad. The end of April is also when consumers in the UK, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and Switzerland will be able to buy both iPad models.

"iPad is something completely new," said Apple's CEO Steve Jobs. "We’re excited for customers to get their hands on this magical and revolutionary product and connect with their apps and content in a more intimate, intuitive and fun way than ever before."

From March 12, US customers will be able to pre-order their iPad in advance of the April release date. The device will launch at a starting price of $499.

The HD-capable iPad was unveiled for the first time in January. The tablet device has been shown running a host of applications, including games from Gameloft and EA. It will also allow users to browse the web, share photos, watch videos and listen to music.

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Kath Brice