iPad coming soon to China

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iol scitech march 16 ipad launch REUTERS File photo: Apple is believed to be launching a mini version of the iPad within weeks to fend off competition from Amazon and Google.

New York - Apple will start selling the iPad in China on July 20 after paying $60 million to settle a dispute over the ownership of the tablet computer's name.

Apple says it will begin selling its latest iPad starting at $499 (about R5 000) and the older iPad 2 starting at $399.

The tablet computers will be sold online, at Apple stores, and through approved resellers.

Apple often brings products to China later than in other countries. The iPad model coming to China this month went on sale in the US and several other countries in March. It features a sharper screen and a faster processing chip than the previous two iPad models.

Apple still dominates the emerging market for tablet computers, though Google and Microsoft are both coming out with competing devices.

The name dispute had threatened iPad sales in China, Apple's second-largest market after the United States and the source of much of its growth.

Apple, which is headquartered in Cupertino, California, said it bought the global rights to the iPad name from Shenzhen Proview Technology in 2009, but Chinese authorities said the rights in China were never transferred. A Chinese court ruled in December that Proview still owned the name in China and the company asked Chinese authorities to seize iPads.

To settle the dispute, Apple paid Proview $60 million to gain the rights to the iPad name. The company won approval from Chinese regulators for the device in May. - Sapa-AP

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