Japan iPad 2 Launch Delayed During Earthquake Recovery

Apple’s first wave of international iPad 2 launches is set for March 25, but Japan isn’t on that list any more. Instead, Apple is delaying its product launch in the country while recovery efforts from the recent earthquake and tsunami are underway.

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

iPad 2 Japan launch delayedApple’s iPad 2 launch in Japan is delayed

Apple began selling the iPad 2 in the United States on March 11, and quickly ran through its available inventory. Customers that buy an iPad now from the Apple Web site can expect shipping delays of up to five weeks.

Japan was struck with an 8.9 magnitude earthquake that was later upgraded to a 9.0 magnitude quake about 230 miles outside of Tokyo at the end of last week. The earthquake was followed by aftershocks and a tsunami that devastated coastal communities.

Google launched its Person Finder service to help people locate friends and relatives in the region, and Apple set up a special Red Cross donation page in the iTunes Store to make it easier to offer financial aid to rescue efforts.

Apple hasn’t said when it plans to begin selling the iPad 2 in Japan.