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Tech Data is now distributing all six models of Apple’s iPad to authorized Apple resellers, starting a few weeks ago, a spokesman at the IT distribution company has confirmed.  The deal is a long time coming.

Apple’s authorized resellers told Apple in January when the iPad was first announced that their business customers were asking for the device. But those partner requests initially fell on deaf ears.

“Yes, I do think there’s a great channel partner opportunity for the iPad,” Angela O’Donnell, managing director of New York-based IT solution provider W. O’Donnell Consulting, told Channel Insider back in January when Apple’s tablet was first announced. “However, when I inquired of my preferred distributor, Tech Data, whether or not we could place any preorders, I was told that Apple had not yet decided whether or not Tech Data would be able to carry it.”

The issue echoed iPhone distribution, which had been confined to Apple and the iPhone carrier AT&T. But when it came to the iPad tablet, nearly eight months after it was first announced, Apple finally heard its channel partners’ pleas.

Apple’s iPad has enjoyed several large scale business wins in the meantime, and is now profiling a few business wins on its iPad for Business website, including Hyatt Hotels and Resorts and RehabCare. http://www.apple.com/ipad/business/profiles/

Tech Data has made a particular commitment to Apple and its products, creating an Apple Specialized Business Unit as well as an Apple Lab to showcase Apple technologies including the iPhone, iPod and Mac computers, as well as third party technology that works with the Apple products.

Apple’s decision to distribute the iPad through Tech Data follows other recent moves by Apple to broaden the distribution channels for its highly-popular tablet computer. For instance, Apple has also announced plans to make the iPad available for sale at electronics retailer Best Buy starting Sunday. And Apple is rumored to be considering retailer Target as another retail outlet for its device.