Apple shares were suspended from trade before the announcement. They had gained 0.7 percent to close at $376.18.
The pancreatic cancer survivor and industry icon, who has been on medical leave for an undisclosed condition since January 17, will be replaced by COO and longtime heir apparent Tim Cook.
"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 said in a brief letter announcing his resignation.
The 55-year-old CEO had briefly emerged from his medical leave in March to unveil the latest version of the iPad and later to attend a dinner hosted by President Barack Obama for technology leaders in Silicon Valley.
Jobs' often-gaunt appearance has sparked questions about his health and his ability to continue at Apple.
"I will say to investors: don't panic and remain calm, it's the right thing to do. Steve will be chairman and Cook is CEO," said BGC Financial analyst Colin Gillis.
I have to admit, I teared up. Knowing it's got to be his health. I have never followed a person as closely as Steve Jobs. What a genius he is. The greatest presentation expert ever. I have a VCR tape of MacWorld Expo in 2001 or 2002 and watch it maybe once a year just to watch him work his magic to the crowd. Even though the numbers/stats of the machines are low and slow by today's standards. It's still neat to watch. So is the 1984 speech of the intro of original Macintosh.
_________________________ Well, until they make it right, I hope they never sleep at night. They better make some changes and do it soon. -Things Goin' On/Lynyrd Skynyrd
Apparently from CNN guest talking head who knows Jobs - he mentioned that Jobs made it through all that cancer stuff and surgery . Jobs now is battling all the side effects and some are serious.
The greatest presentation expert ever. I watched some keynotes from MicroSoft and some other big CEOs , talk about having NO style.
Yep I heard that too. In fact I watched every keynote more than twice - I have incorporated some of Jobs technics into my own presentations. I strongly believe my presentations are much much better now than what they were 10 years ago. I can thank Steve for that.
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