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A senior New York Times editor has added to the hoopla surrounding the expected launch of an Apple tablet by identifying the not-seen-yet device as a key platform for the paper.

Bill Keller is an executive editor at the NYT and gave a talk on Thursday last week to a meeting of all staff, at which the free-vs-paid-for newspaper topic was discussed. One of the problem areas he mentioned concerned delivering NYT content to mobile devices:

"... we need to figure out the right journalistic product to deliver to mobile platforms and devices. I’m hoping we can get the newsroom more actively involved in the challenge of delivering our best journalism in the form of Times Reader, iPhone apps, WAP, or the impending Apple slate, or whatever comes after that."

The Times Reader is Adobe Air-based software that runs on Windows, Mac and Linux platforms and delivers content resembling the NYT's print format. It is updated with news every five minutes and users have the ability to read NYT content offline, see news pictures and access a 7-day archive.

Apple has not said a tablet is coming. Various sources say one is. It is claimed it will be bigger than an iPhone but smaller than an MacBook, and will cost around $700. ®

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