Somehow, this was expected. Apple’s visionary co-founder, former CEO, and Chairman, Steve Jobs, has died. He was 56. Jobs battled cancer for many years, and stepped down from day-to-day work at Apple this year.
He helped lead Apple from the brink of death in the mid-1990s to become the most powerful of worldwide brands, a company with tens of millions of customers, and a rich legacy. Jobs fathered the concept of the personal computer and was the dominant driver behind the Mac, the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad. His death, although feared was not unexpected among the throngs of Apple watchers.
Jobs was born in 1955 and adopted. He grew up in Cupertino, CA, Apple’s home. He worked at Hewlett-Packard, was a college drop out, helped design games at Atari, backpacked across India, and started the world’s most valuable company.
His speech to graduating students at Stanford is among the most popular online videos.
You have to trust in something: your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
Jobs and his friend Steve Wozniak built the first Apple 1 in Jobs’ parents’ garage in 1976. Their first computer was priced at $666.66. It didn’t have a keyboard or display. The Apple II was a huge commercial hit. The Macintosh was the first mainstream computer with a mouse and point and click capability.
Apple’s co-founder was shoved out of his own company in 1985 and started NeXT Computer. The company was not a great success, but was purchased by a struggling Apple in 1996. Jobs made more of his wealth with his Pixar Animation Studios venture, which was bought by Disney. He was Disney’s largest shareholder.
Since Jobs returned to Apple, the company has produced one hit product after another. The Mac has never been more profitable or successful. The iPod is the most popular music player in the world.
The iPhone has set the standard for smart phones, and the iPad has become the most successful new product launch in history. These are all Jobs’ legacy products.
In 2004 Jobs announced that he had been treated for pancreatic cancer. Since then, he had appeared thin and frail at Apple product keynote presentations. In 2009, Jobs has a liver transplant and took an extended leave of absence from Apple. He even sanctioned an authored biography, which will be published this year.
Jobs legacy is Apple and the products that bear the Apple logo; loved by tens of millions of people throughout the world. He was married to Laurene for 20 years and has four children.
He will be missed.