While online orders of the Apple iPad 2 face delivery delays of 4-5 weeks, the original iPad is also suffering from longer than expected delivery times.
While the Apple UK online shop clearly states that orders will be “Dispatched: Within 24hrs – In Stock “, what it doesn’t say is where it will be shipped from.
Any reasonable person might expect “Dispatched: Within 24hrs – In Stock” to mean that it’s available to ship from a UK distribution centre, or at worst, from one of their centres in the Republic of Ireland.
What “Dispatched: Within 24hrs – In Stock” actually appears to mean to Apple is that somewhere in a factory in mainland China, an iPad has probably just been completed.
So expect it to be put on a boat from the Chinese factory within about a day, where it will then merrily sail it’s way in a container ship, though the South China Sea, across the Indian Ocean, through the Suez Canal, out through the Mediterranean, and then onwards to some distribution port or other in Europe.
After about two weeks from ordering, you can perhaps expect your iPad to have made it through Rotterdam, to a UK distribution centre, and then finally to your home UK address.
A perfectly reasonable interpretation of “Dispatched: Within 24hrs – In Stock” I’m sure.
EDIT: Irony of ironies, it arrived this afternoon. Only 10 days wait, as opposed to 17 days. Still, would be better if Apple stated “Delivery” times instead of “shipping from” dates.