"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," Jobs wrote in an open letter to Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community.
Jobs submitted his resignation to the board today and strongly recommended that the Board implement its succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO.
"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," Jobs wrote. "I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role," Jobs he added.
Jobs fought and survived a rare form of pancreatic cancer.
"Steve's extraordinary vision and leadership saved Apple and guided it to its position as the world's most innovative and valuable technology company," said Art Levinson, Chairman of Genentech, on behalf of Apple's Board. "Steve has made countless contributions to Apple?s success, and he has attracted and inspired Apple?s immensely creative employees and world class executive team. In his new role as Chairman of the Board, Steve will continue to serve Apple with his unique insights, creativity and inspiration."
"The Board has complete confidence that Tim is the right person to be our next CEO," added Levinson.
As COO, Cook was previously responsible for all of the company's worldwide sales and operations, including end-to-end management of Apple's supply chain, sales activities, and service and support in all markets and countries. He also headed Apple's Macintosh division and played a key role in the continued development of strategic reseller and supplier relationships, ensuring flexibility in response to an increasingly demanding marketplace.