Besieged by a myriad of medical issues, tech genius Steve Jobs has stepped down as CEO of Apple Inc. Jobs relinquished the reins of the world’s largest technology corporation to right-hand man and longtime No. 2 Tim Cook on Wednesday, ending a 14 year tenure in command at a company he brought back from the brink of financial disaster in the ’90s.
Cancer-stricken Jobs, who has been on medical leave from the company since Jan. 17, says he can “no longer meet” the duties and expectations of the job. A gaunt Steve — who underwent a liver transplant two years ago — was last seen publicly in March, during the San Francisco unveiling of Apple’s hugely-popular iPad 2.
“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 shortly after 6:40 PM ET.
The ex-Apple boss was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2004. He’s since undergone a series of aggressive treatments aimed at beating the disease. He’s survived longer than most with a similar diagnosis, but Wednesday’s resignation signals that his disease â€” kept in check for more than seven years â€” is advancing beyond doctors’ control, experts tell USA TODAY.
The paper writes: “Jobs suffers from a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor, which accounts for only about 5% of the 43,000 pancreatic cancers diagnosed each year, and is generally more curable than more common types of pancreatic cancer, says Margaret Tempero, a pancreatic cancer expert at the University of California-San Francisco.”
A college dropout, Jobs started Apple Computer with friend Steve Wozniak in the Jobs family garage in Silicon Valley in the late 1970s.
“His health clearly wasn’t improving and there was going to come a time when he was going to have to step aside,” tech analyst Rob Enderle tells MSNBC. “Apple was designed around Steve Jobs, so there was really never going to be a great time for this.”
What do you think of Steve Jobs’ decision to step down as head of Apple? Are you sorry to see him go?