After Apple began taking pre-orders for the iPad, 190,000 orders were placed within the first week. That rate slowed to 5,000 per day as Apple begins offering school discounts, reports “Fortune” (http://brainstormtech.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2010/03/20/ipad-week-1-190000-pre-orders/?section=money_topstories&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rss%2Fmoney_topstories+%28Top+Stories%29).

Apple racked up pre-orders at the rate of more than 25,000 units per hour early Friday, March 12, when the iPad went on sale, according to the team tracking order numbers at Investor Village’s AAPL Sanity board. By Sunday, the initial frenzy had cooled, reports “Fortune.” The pre-order rate slowed to 30,000 units per day on Monday, 10,000 on Wednesday and 5,000 on Thursday.

The iPad — now available for pre-order — is due to hit the stores April 3. At least the Wi-Fi only versions will; the Wi-Fi + 3G model will hit US store sleeves in late April. In addition, all models of iPad will be available in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland and the UK in late April.

The Wi-Fi iPad sells for a suggested retail price of US$499 for 16GB, $599 for 32GB, $699 for 64GB models. The Wi-Fi + 3G models will be available in late April for a suggested retail price of $629 for 16GB, $729 for 32GB and $829 for 64GB. iPad will be sold in the US through the Apple Store, Appleā€™s retail stores and select Apple Authorized Resellers.