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Workers apply the Apple logo to the exterior of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in preparation for an Apple special event in San Francisco, Calif. -- January 26, 2010 - 

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Bill Radke: After almost a year of rumors, Apple CEO Steve Jobs will unveil a piece of technology today that he's allegedly called "the most important thing he's ever done." Though that quote is, of course, a rumor. Here to sort through the hype: Marketplace's Gregory Warner.


Gregory Warner: iPad, iSlate, iTablet -- whatever it's called, CNET's Erica Ogg will only speculate only a little bit about the device that's supposed to change the world:

Erica Ogg: It's supposed to be very thin, it's supposed to measure about 10 inches and it's going to have a touch screen.

It's supposed to display digital books and magazines and let you download TV shows and videos. It might even recognize your face when you look at it.

Carl Howe is a technology analyst with the Yankee Group. He says the market for e-book readers could double this year.

Carl Howe: If Apple validates that market with a very cool device, it could grow even faster.

And way beyond books, Amazon, whose Kindle rules that market now, has put the call out to software developers for new apps and tools for the Kindle. Erica Ogg says Amazon can still win on price.

Ogg: Some people will just want a dedicated device that just reads books. And they can pay less money for that.

The Kindle costs less than $500. The new Apple i-Thing could be anywhere from $600 to $1,000, depending on who you believe.

In Philadelphia, I'm Gregory Warner for Marketplace.

Follow Gregory Warner at @radiogrego