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iPad Goes International May 28

Residents of numerous countries will soon be able to get their hands on Apple's hot new tablet.

Apple said Friday that it plans to introduce the iPad to a number of countries at the end of the month, and to additional locales in July.

iPad teardown shot via FCC.
(click for larger image and for full photo gallery)

Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and the UK will see Apple's hot new tablet starting May 28.

Residents of those nations can also place iPad preorders starting May 10 through Apple's online store.

Austria, Belgium, Hong Kong, Ireland, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, and Singapore get it the following month. Pricing and network carrier details will vary by location.

There was no word from Apple on when the iPad might be available in Israel, which temporarily banned the device over fears its Wi-Fi signal was too powerful for local networks. News of the international rollout comes on the heels of word that iPad's U.S. sales are on a record breaking pace.

Yankee Group analyst Carl Howe said in a blog post Wednesday that if the iPad maintains its current sales rate through May, it will hit the $1 billion revenue mark by the end of the month—less than 80 days after it first became available for preorder.

That would make it the first consumer product to reach the ten-digit sales mark within that timeframe.

Howe based his projection on Apple's disclosure earlier this week that it sold a million iPads since the device went on the market April 3rd, and the assumption that the torrid sales pace would continue for the duration of May.

The assumption may be well founded, as some consumers are having a tough time getting their hands on an iPad. "Demand continues to exceed supply and we're working hard to get this magical product into the hands of even more customers," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs, in a statement Monday.

Apple is positioning the iPad—essentially an oversized iPod touch--as an all-purpose handheld that's optimized for e-reading, viewing videos and images, and gaming.

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