Steve Jobs

Among the eulogies to Steve Jobs’ undoubted genius was a back-handed compliment from the markets on Thursday morning: smartphone manufacturers’ shares rose in Asia, apparently on doubts about whether the US company would be able to repeat its innovative success without its founder.

Jobs left his chief executive role in August, but his premature death puts the task of dispelling those doubts firmly in the hands of his successors. It could be a mistake to assume that, because they lack Jobs’ charisma, they won’t be capable of carrying forward his legacy.

 

Steve Jobs of Apple

Steve Jobs stamped his mark on the first 35 years of personal computing history, from the rudimentary but ground-breaking Apple II to the sleek touch-screen iPad. In the process, he helped instil new digital tastes in a generation, while touching off a wave of disruption that has reshaped the consumer electronics, mobile communications and media and entertainment industries.

An unlikely business leader, with an early leaning towards the counter-culture that stayed with him throughout his life, he carved out one of the most remarkable careers of his age, including a corporate comeback that is unrivalled in modern business history. Apple, the company he co-founded – widely thought to be heading for bankruptcy when he returned after a decade’s absence in 1996 – this year briefly overtook ExxonMobil to become the world’s most valuable company.

 

Flowers in memory of Apple co-founder Jobs

Tributes to the late Steve Jobs have poured in from around the globe from political leaders, business chiefs and the millions of consumer fans of Apple, the company he built into the world’s second biggest by market capitalisation.

Investors reacted calmly to the news of Jobs’ death at 56 on Wednesday, with Apple shares slipping only slightly on Thursday in New York, giving the company a market value of $350bn.

 

The death of Steve Jobs, announced tonight by Apple, was expected but still comes as a shock. There are very few business people who are truly irreplaceable but Mr Jobs was undoubtedly so.

Like many other people, I heard the news via his products – in my case through Twitter on an iPod Touch — and am writing this on a MacBook Air. Mr Jobs’ original vision of a world of personal computers came truer than even he imagined.

 

Chris Nuttall

Apple’s brief announcement on Wednesday evening of the death of Steve Jobs marked the beginning of a flood of tributes from business leaders and politicians, along with mass outpourings on social networks.

As Apple replaced the new iPhone 4S with a picture of its 56-years-old co-founder and chairman on the front page of its website, its board said: “We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.”

Tim Cook,  Apple chief executive, sent a message to staff  and the Jobs family issued a statement. These and further reactions from President Obama to Mark Zuckerberg, Google’s co-founders, Twitter’s CEO,  and Bill Gates are after the jump. 

Richard Waters

How important has Steve Jobs’ famous reality distortion field been to Apple’s ability to shape perceptions of its new products – and persuade avid buyers to line up round the block to get their hands on them?

With next week’s unveiling of the iPhone 5, which has just been confirmed, we will get the first chance to see what a big Apple product launch feels like without the company’s guiding spirit. 

Tech news from around the web:

Michael Arrington, the man behind the influential TechCrunch blog, has started a venture capital fund to invest in start-ups, the New York Times reports. Mr Arrington’s $20m CrunchFund throws up concerns over a conflict of interests, the NYT adds, saying that it is one of journalism’s cardinal rules that reporters should maintain a distance from the people, organisations and issues they cover. 

From Vic Gundotra, the man behind Google+, to NPR’s All Songs Considered host Bob Boilen and Allen Paltrow, who met Steve Jobs as a young boy, the web was filled with stories of personal reminiscences about the Apple co-founder and expressions of gratitude for his visionary work.

Late on Wednesday, Mr Jobs announced he was stepping down as chief executive of Apple. Many in the tech world reflected on his influential leadership. Others pondered whether the company will continue its success with Tim Cook taking over

Maija Palmer

This internal email was sent by Tim Cook to all Apple employees early on Thursday morning, reassuring them that the company “is not going to change”.

Below is the full text of the e-mail:

Team:

I am looking forward to the amazing opportunity of serving as CEO of the most innovative company in the world. Joining Apple was the best decision I’ve ever made and it’s been the privilege of a lifetime to work for Apple and Steve for over 13 years. I share Steve’s optimism for Apple’s bright future.

 

Today’s tech news from around the web is devoted to reaction and comment on Steve Jobs’ decision to step down as Apple chief executive:

Steve Wozniak, who co-founded Apple along with Steve Jobs, says that Jobs will be remembered as one of the most successful company chiefs, TNW reports.

He’s probably going to be remembered for the next 100 years as the best business leader of our time. He will watch the company for a while, hope its on such a good track. For a company as large as Apple, corporate culture doesn’t change overnight. The quality of the people doesn’t change.