Taipei, May 1 (CNA) Far EasTone Telecommunications Co. and Taiwan Mobile Co. announced Tuesday that consumers can begin to register for the latest generation of Apple Inc.'s iPad, the first time that Taiwanese carriers will sell any version of the popular gadget.
Far EasTone, Taiwan's No. 3 telecom operator, said it began taking pre-orders for the 4G-equipped version of the new iPad through online registrations as well as at over 500 retail and franchise stores.
The company will unveil an official sales date and related data plans soon, said Far EasTone spokeswoman Alison Kao.
"Unlike the previous two iPad versions that went on sale in Taiwan through retail channels only, this is the first time Taiwan's telecom operators will sell Apple's tablets," Kao told CNA by telephone.
Taiwan Mobile, the country's second largest carrier, also began taking pre-orders Tuesday on its official website and at its 350 stores, according to an e-mail sent to the media, but it did not disclose when the product would go on sale or details about its data plans.
Both Far EasTone and Taiwan Mobile will sell the 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models.
Taiwan's top carrier Chunghwa Telecom Co. said it currently has no plans to sell the new iPad.
According to Apple, the retail prices for the faster 4G-equipped version in other countries are US$629 for the 16GB model, US$729 for the 32GB model and US$829 for the 64GB model.
The latest version of iPad can run on selected 4G LTE (Long-Term Evolution) networks in the United States and Canada, but Taiwanese consumers still cannot enjoy such high-speed data transmission because of a lack of LTE operators in the country.
Apple began shipping the new iPad to the United States and several other countries, including Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, France and Japan, on March 16.
Taiwan was not included in the first three waves of shipments of the new device as of April 16.
The new iPad features more advanced features, including a high definition "retina" display, a 5-megapixel camera and a quad-core processor.
(By Jeffrey Wu)