Apple’s iPad2 tablet will be available on Friday – a year after the government’s embarrassing and short-lived ban on the original iPad. The launch in Israel of the new iPad was delayed a month because of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.
Apple does not operate a store in Israel and will sell the new hi-tech tablet through its representative, iDigital, and Office Depot.
Last April, Israel confiscated iPads from incoming travelers at Ben Gurion International Airport, claiming that the wireless technology threatened security and interfered with other products.
The Communications Ministry argued that the American standard for the iPad’s wireless technology allowed stronger signals than those that are allowed in Israel. "This device's wireless strengths violate Israeli law and will overpower other wireless devices in Israel," ministry spokesman Yechiel Shavi said at the time.
The ban left computer experts scratching their heads, because there had been no ban on mobile phones and laptops, also made according to American standards. An Apple spokeswoman said at the time that the iPad “complies with international industry standards for Wi-Fi specifications."
Two weeks after the ban, the Communications Ministry lifted its sanctions, following tests that showed that the iPad "identifies the Wi-fi access point in its surroundings and adjusts itself automatically, enabling the iPad to be operated without interfering with other wireless devices."