March 15, 2011 / 4:41 PM / 8 years ago

Apple delays iPad 2 launch in Japan

The Apple iPad 2 is shown during its launch event in San Francisco, California March 2, 2011. REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Apple Inc said it will delay the launch of the iPad 2 tablet computer in Japan, in the wake of last week’s earthquake and tsunami.

Apple had planned to start selling the device in Japan on March 25. The company did not provide a rescheduled launch date.

“We are delaying the launch of the iPad 2 in Japan while the country and our teams focus on recovering from the recent disaster,” said Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris.

Many technology companies are scrambling for supplies after the disaster in Japan shut down factories there and disrupted the global manufacturing chain.

But Kerris said the company’s decision to delay sales in Japan had nothing to do with any component supply shortages.

Apple launched the iPad 2 in the United States last week to strong demand, with many stores selling out of the device. It will go on sale in roughly two dozen additional countries next week.

Roughly 5 percent of Apple’s revenue came from Japan in the December quarter. Revenue from the country rose 83 percent in the period to $1.4 billion.

Apple’s March quarter is unlikely to be impacted by the crisis in Japan, analysts say, but the company could be affected in the June quarter by supply shortages, particularly for components like flash memory.

Shares of Cupertino, California-based Apple were down 2.1 percent to $346.33 in midday Nasdaq trading.

Reporting by Gabriel Madway; Editing by Derek Caney and Gunna Dickson

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