How to Get an iPad 2

A friend sent me a link to a New York Times article called “How to Procure an iPad 2.” The article was very interesting and made it sound like you could get one at Best Buy with minimal effort. Unfortunately, the article is wrong. So, read it if you want, but with a grain of salt. And like your Mom told you, don’t believe everything you read. Even in the New York Times. Shocking.

I will bet you, however, that your Mom NEVER told you not to believe what you read here on The Boyce Blog. Your Mom was right. You can trust The Boyce Blog.

I did some legwork today, visiting the Best Buy in West Los Angeles in person, and calling Best Buy in Culver City, California on the phone. I got the same story both places and they told me that I would get the same story no matter where I went. The story from Best Buy is this:

  • They do have a waiting list for iPad 2s, but they are not adding names to it any longer.
  • The waiting list was available ONLY for people who came into the store, not over the phone.
  • Getting on the list meant making a $100 deposit.
  • A person on the waiting list could buy a single iPad 2.
  • The waiting list was closed three days ago.
  • Best Buy has not received an iPad 2 shipment since opening day, Friday March 11th.
  • The waiting list is several times larger than the initial shipment of iPad 2s, so it’s going to be a while before they get through the list.

Well now. That’s quite a bit different than what the New York Times reported. Based on the above, it appears that there is no sense in going to Best Buy for an iPad 2 anytime soon. No sense in camping out overnight to be the first one in the store, because any iPad 2s Best Buy receives will be going to people on the waiting list. No sense in calling them up to get on the waiting list because the waiting list is closed (and they wouldn’t do it over the phone even if they still were taking names). No sense trying to order online because they aren’t taking iPad 2 orders online at this time.

So, cross Best Buy off your list of places to go to get an iPad 2 before everyone else. You can’t buy what Best Buy doesn’t have. Eventually, they’ll have them. But they don’t have them now. UPDATE: they have them now (March 23rd, 2011). Use the Best Buy iPad 2 Availability Checker (thanks, www.obamapacman.com).

Target doesn’t have any either. They haven’t seen any since opening day, same as Best Buy. However, you can check Target’s iPad 2 inventory. Don’t get excited, you probably won’t find an iPad 2 anywhere near you. But it is interesting to see how many Target stores there are.

Apple Stores might have some but they’re gone in minutes. A week after launch, the lines are still longer than the supply. So, unless you’re willing to be in line before 5 AM, don’t plan on getting an iPad 2 at an Apple Store. At least not now.

It comes down to this: if you’re wondering how to get an iPad 2, the best way right now is “order one through Apple’s online store.” Do it that way and get the back engraved for free. Order the thing today and you can expect it in 4 to 5 weeks. I know, that’s a long time, but do it that way and you can quit chasing the thing, letting you move on to other stuff, like figuring out which 3G wireless plan to buy.

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