updated 01:55 pm EST, Thu January 28, 2010
Publisher says it had no advance iPad info
McGraw-Hill today backtracked and denied it had spoiled the iPad release through its own CEO. The textbook publisher says that Terry McGraw's "speculative comments" in a CNBC interview were a reflection of what he had said in a fiscal results call earlier the same day. Corporate communications VP Steven Weiss claimed to All Things D that McGraw-Hill wasn't involved in talks with Apple and thus had nothing to leak.
"We were never part of the launch event and never in a position to confirm details about the device ahead of time," Weiss said. "[The comments were] simply intended to suggest that if the new device were to use iPhone applications, many of our education products would be compatible with the technology and could be made easily available on it. Unfortunately, it seems that many mistakenly interpreted his comments as being more specific to yesterday’s announcement. It is also important to note that only the products of trade publishers were featured in the launch event. Our digital education programs are not in that category and were never part of those negotiations."
The correction is partly backed by McGraw's statements from the call, which made a reference to getting support from Apple to develop iPhone versions of its CourseSmart material; the creation would let McGraw-Hill easily adapt the content to a larger-screened device. However, the CEO in the CNBC interview had spoken with certainty about the iPad, its use of the iPhone OS and a large amount of collaboration.
Speculation exists that McGraw-Hill had been punished by Apple for a premature reveal by having its deal excluded from those shown on a presentation slide, but little definitive evidence has surfaced to support the claim.