Apple Retail Stores Begin Offering Walk-In Sales of Retina iPad Mini Models
Following a surprise launch last week that saw Apple's retail stores offering the new Retina iPad mini only for Personal Pickup of online orders, the company's U.S. stores have now begun selling the device to walk-in customers. Supplies do, however, remain extremely tight, and thus ordering online for Personal Pickup to secure a specific model is still advised.
The launch of walk-in sales was noted this morning in a research note from Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White, who indicated that a number of New York City stores received shipments designated for walk-in customers last night and this morning. MacRumors has confirmed that walk-in sales are now being offered in some stores, although one store contacted by MacRumors reported that it was still offering only Personal Pickup options.
Apple has also updated its iPad retail page to simply encourage customers to purchase in-store, rather than specifically noting that they should purchase the Retina iPad mini online for in-store pickup.
The tight supply constraints on Retina iPad mini models mean that Personal Pickup remains unavailable for many models at many stores, with several supply trackers attempting to help customers determine whether their desired models are available in their areas. Online orders through Apple's U.S. online store continue to show 5-10 business day shipping estimates for all models.
Update 10:40 AM: White has issued a new note reporting that 26 out of 32 stores surveyed by his team currently have at least some stock of Retina iPad mini models available for walk-in purchase.