Apple’s fearless leader and visionary mind behind the world’s biggest-selling gadgets is stepping down.
CEO Steve Jobs announced his departure from the company late Wednesday, tendering his resignation in a letter to Apple’s Board of Directors.
“I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it,” Jobs said. “I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.”
In a news release, Apple said COO Tim Cook will take over effectively immediately. Cook was Jobs’ choice as part of a succession plan.
Jobs will remain with the company in a lesser role, serving as Chairman of the Board.
News of the announcement caused the company’s tock (AAPL) to drop about five percent in late trading.
Jobs’ future with Apple has been cloudy in recent years, after the co-founder took a leave of absence earlier this year due to health concerns.