Apple on Monday announced that it has now sold 2 million iPad tablet devices since it first starting taking orders for the device on March 12. So it's taken Apple just 11 weeks, or almost three months, to reach this milestone. (The company claims the time as just 60 days, or two months, since it doesn't count the time during which customers could preorder the devices. Instead, Apple counts back to April 3, when the iPad became available to the public.)

Apple's continued success with the iPad is due to an ongoing release schedule in which the device is made available in new international markets over time. The company also staggered the US release, making the Wi-Fi iPad versions available to the public several weeks before the 3G-equipped models.

"Customers around the world are experiencing the magic of iPad, and seem to be loving it as much as we do," Apple CEO Steve Jobs said in a prepared statement. Alluding to a several-week delay in international iPad shipments, he added, "We appreciate their patience, and are working hard to build enough iPads for everyone."

The iPad, of course, is Apple's tablet-like device, running the iPhone OS. And while the iPad runs the 200,000 apps that have been written for the iPhone and iPod touch, customers will have a better experience with the 5,000 native iPad apps that are currently available. The iPad is also compatible with all of the content available in the iTunes Store, including music, TV shows, movies, audiobooks, and more.

Apple first announced the iPad in January at a special event, and at the time the company said that customers would be able to purchase the device by the end of March. That launch was delayed to April 3, but those interested in purchasing an iPad could begin preordering the device on March 12. On May 3, Apple claimed it had sold 1 million iPads in one month, though of course many of those sales actually occurred during the three weeks before April 3.

However you measure it, the iPad is selling well, and customers around the world seem to be as excited about the iPad as they are about other Apple devices. Long lines awaited store openings in Japan and throughout Europe when the iPad went on sale, as they did previously in the US. The iPad is now available in in Australia, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland, and the US.

And the iPad isn't Apple's only big launch this year. The company is expected to unveil a fourth generation iPhone smartphone next week at the developer-oriented Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) In San Francisco. It could become available to customers as soon as June, though given Apple's previous iPhone schedules, a July launch is more likely.