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Apple iPad to go on sale in US on April 3

WASHINGTON, Mar 5- Apple announced on Friday that its new iPad tablet computer would go on sale in US stores on April 3 and in other countries in late April.

The availability date is slightly later than that announced by Apple at the January 27 launch of the device, when the California company said the iPad "will be available in late March worldwide."

Apple said it would be accepting pre-orders for the touchscreen multi-media device at its online store from March 12.

Apple said the iPad model featuring Wi-Fi connectivity would be available in its US stores from April 3 and the model which offers both Wi-Fi and 3G in late April.

The Wi-Fi and 3G models will be available in Australia, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and Switzerland in late April and in additional countries later this year, Apple said in a statement.

Apple said international pricing will be announced in April.

"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," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said.

The iPad has a 9.7-inch (24.6-centimeter) color screen and resembles an oversized iPhone. It is 0.5 inches (1.3 cms) thick, weighs 1.5 pounds (0.7 kgs) and comes with 16, 32, or 64 gigabytes of flash memory.

The iPad allows users to watch video and surf the Web, serves as an electronic reader and runs almost all of the applications available through the Apple App Store for the iPod and iPhone.

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The cheapest iPad model, with Wi-Fi connectivity and 16GB of memory, is 499 dollars while the most expensive — which includes 3G connectivity and 64GB of memory — costs 829 dollars.

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