AT&T reveals 400K-500K iPad 3Gs activated in first 2 months

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Apple this week declined to give a breakdown on Wi-Fi-only vs. 3G-capable iPad sales, but AT&T provided some insight when the wireless carrier revealed it activated between 400,000 and 500,000 last quarter, and reiterated its popularity with enterprise customers.

AT&T Chief Financial Officer Rick Linder, on his company's quarterly earnings conference call Thursday, announced the number, which applies only to U.S. sales. The 3G iPad launched in the U.S. in late April, while the international launch occurred a month later.

"One thing that's been encouraging and a bit surprising so far is the level of interest from business customers," Linder revealed. "...Right from the beginning with the iPad, we've had a number of our business customers express interest. A number of them have trials going on."

He continued: "Businesses see the opportunity in many cases to use the iPad potentially in place of laptops for many of their people that travel."

That falls in line with what Apple said this week regarding fast iPad enterprise adoption. In its own quarterly earnings call on Tuesday, the Cupertino, Calif., company said that more than 50 percent of Fortune 100 companies are deploying or testing the iPad in only its first three months of availability. The Wi-Fi-only model launched nearly a month before the 3G-capable hardware.

Apple sold 3.27 million iPads in the device's first three months, and likely would have sold more if production could have kept up with demand. Company executives have said they do not know when they will be able to meet that demand, as they are currently selling every iPad they can make.

Linder said that corporate adoption of the iPad has come more quickly than it did with the iPhone. Though Apple's smartphone took more time, it is now at use in more than 80 percent of Fortune 100 companies.

"When we first introduced the iPhone, the businesses — and in particular the CIOs (of)... our business customers — were reluctant, and they kind of pushed back on bringing the iPhone into their infrastructure," he said. "And over time, that — as you know — has changed dramatically, and now we have businesses that are developing applications and putting their own applications and content down on the iPhone base within their companies."

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