Steve mentioned in his iPad preso
yesterday that he was pretty confident the company would have international data deals locked up by June or July of this year -- but since the thing uses some wacky new micro SIM standard, carriers that intend to support it are going to need to get the new chips in stock after having used traditional SIMs for nearly twenty years. That makes moving your iPad around between carriers and your SIM between devices that much harder, but we've got a sliver of good news here: we're hearing from a tipster with connections at supplier Gemalto that O2 and Orange both have micro SIM orders in the pipeline. That doesn't necessarily mean that Apple is going to be trumpeting them as iPad partners with special data plans, of course -- but even if they aren't, at least they'll have the necessary equipment ready for you if you want to use your unlocked tablet on their airwaves. Gemalto also has outstanding orders with T-Mobile and AT&T (of course), so yeah -- it might be a long road, but we're hopeful that these will start to become commonplace over the next few years.
[Thanks, anonymous tipster]