Jobs not a good'un

Steve Jobs has stood down as CEO of Apple and becomes the chairman of the technology company, with chief operating officer Tim Cook succeeding him.

Jobs has struggled with and, it was thought, overcome cancer, making a public appearance at the unveiling of the iPad 2 earlier in the year.

The announcement was made in a statement from Apple following a letter from Jobs. He said: '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. Unfortunately, that day has come.'

He added: 'I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as chairman of the board, director and Apple employee. As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.

'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. 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.'

Shares in Apple immediately fell by 7% as market sought to come to terms with the impact of Apple losing its leader. 'Steve Jobs is not your typical CEO. He is both a visionary from a technology industry perspective as well as a micro-manager,' said Ashok Kumar, an analyst at Rodman and Renshaw. "To say that he is instrumental or key in the turnaround of Apple's fortunes would be a gross understatement.'

While no official reason has been given for the resignation, it is thought it has something to do with Jobs' well documented fight with neuroendocrine cancer of the pancreas, which was first diagnosed in 2003.

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