The next-gen iPad announced on 7 March by Apple CEO Tim Cook will hit Apple's retail stores as well as the company's online store on 16 March at 8 am local time in the US and nine other countries, Apple announced on March 14.

Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, the UK, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are the few other countries beside the US where the new iPad sale will begin at 8 am local time.

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macau, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden are the other 25 countries who will be getting the third generation iPad on 23 March.

New iPad price:

The new iPad with wi-fi model will be available in both colours: black and white on March 16 at a retail price of $499 for 16 GB model, $599 for the 32 GB model and $699 for 64 GB model. Furthermore iPad Wi-Fi+4G model will be available at a suggested retail price of $629 for 16 GB, $729 for 32 GB and $829 for 64 GB.

However the iOS 5.1 and iTunes 10.6 are available as free software updates. The iPhoto, iMovie 1.3 and GarageBand 1.2, all three are available for $4.99 in the App Store. And Keynote 1.6, Pages 1.6 and Numbers 1.6 are also available at $9.99 from the App Store.