The man who guided Apple through its transition from an almost irrelevant computing platform to ubiquitous household name has stepped down.
In his resignation letter, Jobs professes that he can “no longer meet [his] duties and expectations” as Apple’s leader; continuing poor health is suspected to be the cause. He encouraged the company to follow a succession plan, and nominated former COO Tim Cook to replace him; the board has agreed.
Steve Jobs co-founded Apple in 1976, and after stints elsewhere, returned to the top executive role in 1997.
In 2001, Apple launched digital music store iTunes, and later that year, the first iPod. The two products are arguably responsible for the digital content revolution, and led the company to the iPhone, which popularised the smartphone as a gaming platform, and the iPad, which looks set to do the same for tablets.
Jobs’s 14 year tenure has seen Apple inspire remarkable changes in the computing, mobile phone, and gaming industries. He will be sadly missed.