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New iPad prompts 'record weekend' as Apple pays out £28bn

The new iPad ushered in a record weekend for Apple, Tim Cook revealed as he announced a $45bn shareholder bonanza.

The new iPad ushered in a record weekend for Apple, the fruit-flavoured iPhone folks have revealed. Announcing plans for its £62bn cash reserves, Apple's boss said he was "thrilled" with the new tablet.

There were no sales figures forthcoming during today's announcement, but based on the fact that Apple has been making money hand over fist for quite some time now, it's safe to speculate that a record weekend for Apple involves some serious moolah.

Which is one thing Apple isn't short of: head honcho Cook gave the iPad hint during an announcement of Apple's plans for its much-discussed £62bn stockpile of cash and assets that are practically cash. Over the next three years, dividends will be paid to shareholders -- the first since 1995 -- while stock will also be bought back.

Apple plans to repurchase its own stock to reduce the number of Apple shares floating about in public. The company claims it wants to avoid diluting the value of the stock when its employees are rewarded in shares.

Shareholders will receive a dividend of $2.65 per share towards the end of the year, with around $10bn paid out per year. Despite holding a large number of shares as part of his position at the top of the company, Cook has requested not to receive a dividend.

The new iPad went on sale on Friday. Previous models launched in the US first, leaving us with a tantalising wait before getting our hands on the latest Apple slate. But this version hit shops in various countries around the world at the same time, which contributed to the record sales.

Some users are less than happy, however, reporting that their new iPad has overheated.

We'll find out more about the new iPad's sales and the amount of money it's generated when Apple next reveals its quarterly financials. Also coming up this year, Cook hinted that the pipeline is "full of stuff", suggesting there are plenty more Apple announcements to come in 2012.