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Steve Jobs resigns as CEO of Apple

Cedes position to current COO Tim Cook, requests to remain chairman of the board

Steve Jobs has stepped down from the position of CEO of Apple.

The decision was announced yesterday in an open letter released to the "Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community."

"I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know," Jobs writes. "Unfortunately, that day has come."

Jobs named current COO Tim Cook as his successor, and requested that he be allowed to remain, "Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee."

Cook joined Apple in 1998, and was appointed to COO in 2005. He has been influential in streamlining the company's production processes and supply chain, closing factories and warehouses worldwide to significantly increase its profit margins.

"I believe Apple's brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role," Jobs continues.

"I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you."

Since Jobs' return to Apple in 1998 he has been instrumental in its rapid growth, presiding over innovations like the iPod, the iPhone and the App Store, and kick-starting the burgeoning tablet market with the iPad.

Earlier this month, Apple briefly overtook Exxon as the most valuable company in the world. In May, it was named the world's biggest brand.

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Latest comments (20)

Luke Salvoni Senior iOS Developer 5 years ago
Exxon are still worth more, at time of writing.
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Terence Gage Freelance writer 5 years ago
"Jobs named Tim Cook current COO Tim Cook as his successor, and requested that he be allowed him to remain"

"as well as the most biggest brand."

What the hell, guys?! Matt and Dan got the day off or something?
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Somewhere..Steve and Bill will be sipping cocktails in the sunset, ruminating over their trials, tribulations, and legacies. Imagine what kind of lovechild could be the outcome of the two - Earth OS. Power Up here!
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Show all comments (20)
Frederic Eichinger Web Developer 5 years ago
Applepie OS or Glass Tree OS, I'd guess.

Nonetheless this brings an interesting turn ... Not that much changes, since Cook was acting CEO during Jobs' absence in the first place. But finally losing a figurehead could actually bring some kind of apocalyptic feel to the Apple community.
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Alex Wright-Manning Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist, Datascope5 years ago
I'm expecting a minimum 15% drop in Apple shares once the NYSE opens. Time to broaden the portfolio methinks... BUY! BUY! BUY!
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Ahmad Salman5 years ago
This is very unfortunate news .. Steve Jobs have always been my idol :(
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Antony Johnston Writer & Narrative Designer 5 years ago
@Frederic: losing a figurehead like Jobs won't be easy for the community, no. But the "Apple community" as people like us think of it is now just a tiny minority of their customer base. If this had happened even three years ago, it could have been disastrous. But these days, with Apple firmly established in the masses' minds as a successful company that makes great products, I think they'll be just fine for the time being.

As one of the pundits (sorry, I forget which) said on last night's TWiT, Apple works far ahead enough that nothing will change for the next 2, 3, even 5 years. It's what will happen five or ten years out, when decisions made now start having a real effect on the company, that will give us the best indication of whether Apple can continue to thrive.
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Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 5 years ago
Your idol is a guy who ripped off his friend and cofounder-to-be for over two thousand dollars? (That was quite a lot back in the '70s. If you don't believe that reference, you can find six more on Wikipedia.)
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Ben Furneaux Designer, Turbulenz Limited5 years ago
It's sad to see someone that is so passionate and talented at their craft stop doing what they love because of an illness.

Good luck, Steve.
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Sergio Bustamante II VP, Executive Producer, Pixofactor5 years ago
It's a sad day indeed to see Steve Jobs go. I wish him the best and hope that whatever stopped him from continuing on at Apple does not get in the way of any other bright and future prospects.
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Thiago Attianesi Creative Director, Fan Studios5 years ago
Who is Tim Cook?
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Rob Homewood Game Designer, Unity Programmer & Producer 5 years ago
i'm currently half way through Jay Elliot's book 'iLeadership' so I've been thinking a lot about Steve and all the ways his work has affected our daily digital lifestyles.. I wish him the best of luck and hope he gets better soon...
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Andrew Ihegbu Studying Bsc Commercial Music, University of Westminster5 years ago
@Ben

I love how well steve does what he does. The entire general public thinks he actually makes Macs and iPads, and stuff. I guess Xenon ran out of stuff to rip off and it's not fitting for a charismatic man like Steve to run a company without at least looking like he's doing more than running numbers, making shady corporate deals and making sure that the shareholders are happy. In case you don't get my implication, I'm politely suggesting that he isn't a craftsman, and I bet you haven't got a clue what he actually does at apple other than give keynote speeches, and that's the brilliance of it!

Imagine how insulted the Devs here would be if the world though that the Production Manager (who mainly oversees finances and the 'big picture' like deadlines etc) made the whole game himself. That's how everyone else that works at Apple must feel.
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Lennard Feddersen Indie. developer, Rusty Axe Games5 years ago
@Andrew - look at Apple with and without Steve. Back in the mid-90's Apple was on the ropes and, when Steve returned, staged the biggest turnaround story in tech. history. That turn around didn't just happen, Steve made it happen by pushing everybody to create the best products. Undoubtedly he was a PITA to work for at times but, like him or not, Steve had an unrivaled run and I'm sad to see him go.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Lennard Feddersen on 25th August 2011 10:05pm

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Ben Furneaux Designer, Turbulenz Limited5 years ago
@Andrew

I think you'll find Steve was, and is, a craftsman in every sense of the word – it's very well documented. For example: at the beginning of his career working for Atari, he co-created Breakout – an incredibly influential title in the early days of gaming. I'd also consider looking at his 300+ patent credits if you don't consider him a craftsman or creative contributor.

I'm not here to start participate in a petty flame war, but simply express my feeling that if I personally had to my job, which I love, because of a potentially terminal illness I would be devastated. Like Steve or not, show some respect and try not to be too much of a hypocrite.
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Jamie Watson Studying Bachelor of Games & Interactive Entertainment, Queensland University of Technology5 years ago
such a shame that apple doesnt have jobs anymore.. :(

but i guess everyone has to step down sometime..

hopefully he can continue to innovate while been chairman of the board (and keep up those awesome keynotes.
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Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 5 years ago
...at the beginning of his career working for Atari, he co-created Breakout ...

Err...huh? He had nothing to do with the game design at all, as far as I can tell. He was was hired to create a circuit board to implement the design, got his friend Woz to make one using significantly fewer parts than his design, and eventually it seems Atari used yet another design instead.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 5 years ago
Many companies have gone on once the chief has stepped down, so I don't see why there's all this angst in the market. Apple will survive post Jobs, period. Granted, I'm sure KFC's awful chicken today would make Harlan Sanders go for a pistol and go after the people who run the company today. However, Apple already has a very, VERY successful template that works for them that they'll no doubt follow into the future. Unless they pull a Nintendo and start tripping over their shoelaces, that is...

Hell, I bet if any changes popped into later iOS devices that actually made the product BETTER, some Apple loyalists would complain so loudly that the offending feature would be removed. Future headline: iOS Users Petition Asking Apple To Not Even THINK About Letting Them Change Their Own Batteries"

Or something like that...

Anyway, people need to face one fact: mortality. We're all on the same bus, people - some of us need to get off earlier than others. To be even franker, Jobs doesn't look good at all and seems to have been getting worse in the last few months. I don't think anyone in his or her right mind wants to see him keel over in public at an event while showing off the latest iPhone. Stepping down now is probably best for his health and in the long run, better for Apple. It's not as if this is a sudden shock or this wouldn't happen at some point. Perhaps he'll rally a bit and be able to do another few keynotes, but as soon as I heard the announcement, I figured either Jobs and/or his doctors knew the time to retire was at hand.

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Antony Johnston Writer & Narrative Designer 5 years ago
@Andrew, do you know anyone at Apple? I do, and while it has the same ups and downs as any job, I don't know anyone who "resents" Steve Jobs' profile. Companies need a figurehead to engage with the press and public, and Jobs has always been the first to credit the hard work of the teams and staff at Apple for the company's success.

It's no different to guys like Spector, Molyneux, Cliffy, etc., whom many of the public seem to think are the sole creators of their studios' games. Anyone with an ounce of sense knows otherwise, but the press (and studios themselves) perpetuate the auteur myth because it gives them a consistent spokesperson.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Antony Johnston on 26th August 2011 11:04am

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Elikem Jubey5 years ago
Steve Jobs resigns from Apple.

Company shocked to the core.
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