More than 300,000 iPads were scooped up by eager technology consumers during the device’s first day on store shelves, and iPad users already have downloaded more than 1 million apps and more than 250,000 eBooks from the iBooks store, USA Today reports. Huge crowds descended upon Apple Stores over the weekend to buy the new iPad. “The lines were much longer than we anticipated,” said Gene Munster, an analyst for Piper Jaffray. “The hype really helped Apple.” Prices start at $499 for a model with 16 gigabytes of storage and internet access via Wi-Fi. More expensive models with 3G cellular coverage for internet access will be available later this month. Available along with the new iPad are 1,000 new software applications that take advantage of the bigger 9.7-inch screen of the iPad. Many iPad customers were elated with their purchases. Anthony Camanelli, 43, who owns a Los Angeles limousine company, was the first to exit the Apple Store at the Grove shopping center in Los Angeles on Saturday morning with an iPad, after waiting in line since 4 a.m. He has three iPhones and bought the iPad to surf the web with a bigger screen. He has a Windows laptop, but says the iPad will replace that: “I got a new Mac computer for $500, and it looks awesome. The screen is crystal clear. It’s amazing…”

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staff and wire services reports