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Apple Ascends on Digital Talk

A coming announcement of a likely deal with Motorola catapults shares to an all-time high.

Talk of an upcoming announcement was apparently sweet news for investors in

Apple Computer

(AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. Report

on Tuesday, as the company's stock hit another all-time high.

Apple is scheduled to make the announcement Wednesday morning in San Francisco but has not said what it will entail. Indications are that it will involve the company's digital music products.

Analysts and

published reports have widely speculated that the announcement will concern a new phone from


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that will include Apple's iTunes software.

Apple announced a deal with Motorola last year to include iTunes in Motorola's phones, but the companies have yet to debut a joint product and have reportedly delayed the bringing of one to market several times.

Still, while the expected announcement has been well known, anticipation of the deal seemed to spur investors Tuesday. In late regular trading, Apple's stock was up $2.47, or 5.3%, to $48.69.

Earlier in the session, the company's shares were up as much as $2.66, or 5.8%, to $48.88, a new record high for the stock.

"Any new application or use for

Apple's digital music technology, people come screaming in," said Tim Biggam, chief options strategist at Man Securities. But he cautioned that the stock may trade off Wednesday. "This will be a classic case of 'buy the rumor, sell the news.'"

The jump in Apple's stock was accompanied by huge volume. By 3:40 p.m. EDT, roughly 26 million shares had changed hands, up from a three-month average of less than 17 million.

The expected announcement also seemed to boost shares of Motorola. In recent trading, the tech company's stock was up 42 cents, or 1.9%, to $22.42.