Apple’s Steve Jobs Dies at 56

Updated: Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died Wednesday evening, ending a battle with cancer that was both public and stubbornly private.

Jobs stepped down in August after several years as his health declined. News of his death comes just one day after his successor, Tim Cook, hosted the introduction of the iPhone 4S.

Though Jobs couldn’t completely avoid discussion of his illness, he resisted calls for him to release details for the benefit of investors and the media. Say Reuters:

Job’s health had been a controversial topic for years. His battle with cancer had been a deep concern to Apple fans, investors and the company’s board alike. In past years, even board members have confided to friends their concern that Jobs, in his quest for privacy, wasn’t being forthcoming enough with directors about the true condition of his health.

Reuters also recalled Jobs’ commencement speech at Stanford, where he said:

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”

President Obama released a statement saying, in part:

Steve was fond of saying that he lived every day like it was his last.  Because he did, he transformed our lives, redefined entire industries, and achieved one of the rarest feats in human history: he changed the way each of us sees the world. The world has lost a visionary. And there may be no greater tribute to Steve’s success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented.

Jobs’s successor, Tim Cook, sent this message to Apple employees:


I have some very sad news to share with all of you. Steve passed away earlier today.

Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.

We are planning a celebration of Steve’s extraordinary life for Apple employees that will take place soon. If you would like to share your thoughts, memories and condolences in the interim, you can simply email

No words can adequately express our sadness at Steve’s death or our gratitude for the opportunity to work with him. We will honor his memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work he loved so much.


Venturebeat posted this picture of flags lowered to half-staff at Apple’s headquarters. David Gewirtz of ZDnet has a lovely remembrance here. For more reactions from around the tech world, click here. At Bnet, Constantine von Hoffman reminds us that Jobs also founded Pixar, whose approach to animation and movie-making has been revolutionary in and of itself.

His family said:

Steve died peacefully today surrounded by his family.

In his public life, Steve was known as a visionary; in his private life, he cherished his family. We are thankful to the many people who have shared their wishes and prayers during the last year of Steve’s illness; a website will be provided for those who wish to offer tributes and memories.

We are grateful for the support and kindness of those who share our feelings for Steve. We know many of you will mourn with us, and we ask that you respect our privacy during our time of grief.

Apple’s board of directors released this statement:

We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.

Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.

His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts.

No Responses to “Apple’s Steve Jobs Dies at 56”

  1. Stephanie

    What a true visionary! I feel so privileged to have lived and witnessed all that has come to be from this great man! He will live on forever in all of our hearts and will be thought of daily as we use the tools that not only were created by Apple – but other companies struggling to keep up with him! Rest in Peace! God bless to his family.

  2. I’ve been reading about and writing about Steve Jobs since I was 19 and started my first job as a reporter at Macweek. At the time, I wanted to become a crime reporter and nobody in journalism school thought much of covering technology for “the trades”. My journalism professors told me that anybody with any talent would want to work only at a big-city newspaper. Ha. But thinking about Jobs’ life story makes me feel lucky I’ve watched this industry close-up for the past 20 years. Jobs and everyone inspired by him and his accomplishments is why tech is still the bright light of the American economy.

  3. Anura DeSilva

    In a world where we have not been leaving much for the next generations, you were one of those very few people not only left more than we can imagine for the next generation but for the current generation as well. I trust you will be remembered as someone who truly believed in enriching our lives and making this world a better place. May you attain Nibbana. Niwan Suva Labewa.

  4. Our deep condolences are for Job’s family.
    For those who are discerning that Job has passed away, they should remember those who are true warriors would fight until the last moment of their life either to establish their vision or to fauna as well as to teach us to stop fighting against each other rather to be more homogeneous to achieve the ultimate goal of human being.

  5. How sad to hear about the loss of the best of the inventor, who made an invaluable contribution just in our lives. And I am very grateful to him for all the joy and diversity that we are able to use in our lives because of it