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Does McGraw-Hill tablet namedropping signal Apple-Amazon divide?

January 26, 2010 |  4:33 pm

In an interview with CNBC today, McGraw-Hill Chief Executive Terry McGraw "casually blabbed details about Apple's tablet," as our Tech Blog puts it. His interview is in the video above.

While the tech world has been abuzz about what the next super-secret Apple announcement may be -- it's scheduled for Wednesday in San Francisco --  the overlap with publishing is new. McGraw-Hill's main business is in textbooks. "Now with the tablet you're going to open up the higher education market, the professional market," McGraw said in the interview. "The tablet is going to be just really terrific."

It's worth noting that McGraw-Hill is the only major textbook publisher that was not part of Amazon's debut of its Kindle DX in May. Amazon, which located its press conference at Pace University, made clear its intentions to move significantly into the ebook textbook market by featuring a fall test program of the Kindle DX with students at six universities, including Princeton.

As much fun as a tablet might be for those interested in technology and ebooks, what will be really interesting in publishing is how Apple and Amazon begin to align with publishers. Will their spheres of influence overlap? Will all companies cooperate? Or are we beginning to see two separate camps?

-- Carolyn Kellogg

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