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Apple Preps For iPad App Deluge

Apple has opened up iPad application submissions as the touch-screen tablet's launch nears, but developers face some challenges getting their apps iPad-ready.

Apple is now accepting submissions for applications for the iPad, which is set to launch in the U.S. on April 3.

The much hyped Apple touch-screen tablet will feature its own App Store, similar to the widely popular App Store for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch. According to Apple, to be among the first apps in the Apple iPad app store, developers must submit their applications by March 27.

But developers may not be jumping for joy just yet, as building iPad-ready applications could pose challenges. According to a report in the New York Times only a small number of developers and app designers have access to an iPad to run and test their software prior to the April 3 launch. Others will have to create the software on a Mac that emulates the iPad.

Apple has also asked developers to keep their applications under wraps until the iPad App Store is ready for launch, the New York Times reported.

Despite the hurdles, iPad developers could find great success building applications for the Apple iPad, especially if the iPhone App Store is any indication. In just 18 months, the App Store for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch has ballooned to include roughly 150,000 apps and as of January more than 3 billion applications had been downloaded.

And while most applications developed for the iPhone and iPod touch App Store will work on the larger-screened Apple iPad, many developers have said they plan to tweak apps to optimize them for the iPad and its 9.7-inch screen and speedier processors.

Apple accepting new applications specifically for the iPad, which has already been pre-ordered by thousands since the pre-sale launched on March 12.

Initially, only Wi-Fi-based versions of the iPad will be available at launch. The 3G models, which will also include Wi-Fi, are expected in late April. For the Wi-Fi models, prices range from about $500 for 16 GB of storage and $700 for 64 GB. For 3G models of the Apple iPad, which will require monthly 3G subscriptions, prices will range from about $630 for 16 GB to $829 for 64 GB.

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