Apple iPad 2: 600,000 Units Predicted This Weekend

Its here, at last we can all order or even pick up in-store the next generation iPad or iPad 2 if you prefer. Launching today from 5 pm in-store and as MacRumors stated even earlier than anticipated online, consumers will no doubt be fighting the lengthy queues and possibly experiencing crashing problems at Apple’s online store with high numbers of people trying to order their device. Shipping dates are reported to be between 18th March through to 25th March 2011.

With sales of the tablet expected to soar more so than last year’s first generation, analysts have been doing their bit to estimate how many units will be sold throughout today and this coming weekend. According to AppleInsider, Steve Jobs company could sell in the region of 600,000 tablets just this weekend alone, a figure that is doubled from last April’s iPad launch.

Gleacher & Co analyst firm via Bloomberg has predicted their thoughts, by Brian Marshall saying that this generation tablet is expected to rocket, easily outweighing the 300,000 units of the iPad sold last April within 24 hours.

Another analyst at Creative Strategies Tim Bajarin also believes that iPad 2 units will fly in the next few days and expressed his opinion by saying, “Apple has such a huge lead. Competitors are going to be chasing Apple for many years.”

The new iPad 2 was made official on the 2nd March with CEO Jobs announcing its thinner (in fact 33%), lighter design along with specifications including FaceTime/PhoneBooth, GarageBand, new A5 dual-core processor, additional Smart Cover, existent 10 hours battery life, front and rear cameras, a white version something of which Apple have struggled to bring to the iPhone as of yet and news of carriers AT&T and Verizon taking on the new tablet.

What are your thoughts on the new iPad 2? Have you already purchased or are going to purchase one today? Tell us your predictions for this weekend?