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Apple to Open Stores Early for International iPad Launch

Apple (s aapl) has revealed plans to open its retail stores early for the iPad’s upcoming international launch.

The company’s well-received 9.7-inch tablet is due to arrive on a more global scale later this week, with the device making its debut in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom on the 28th. The move, which is no doubt going to please many devout Apple fans, will see the company open its doors one hour earlier than usual.

Apple announced the retail plans via email and have also since updated its website to reflect the special opening times, as shown in this UK example.

This means that those dedicated Apple shoppers can head to their local retail store from 8AM local time and grab their iPad earlier than expected. For those in the UK there are other choices beyond the 27 official Apple Stores — both Currys and PC World will be carrying the new tablet in addition to some select Apple Premium Resellers.

Beyond the launch plans listed above, Apple has detailed that the iPad will launch in Austria, Belgium, Hong Kong, Ireland, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand and Singapore at some point during July.

For those outside the U.S., its been a long time coming, but the global launch is finally in sight.

Related GigaOM Pro Research: Hot Topic: Apple’s iPad