Tributes paid to Apple pioneer Jobs

Steve JobsApple co-founder and former chief executive Steve Jobs has died at the age of 56, the US technology company has announced.

The pioneering businessman, who was the mind behind the revolutionary iPhone and iPad devices, had been battling pancreatic cancer.

He stepped down from his post as Apple's chief executive in August saying he could no longer handle the job due to his illness.

Mr Jobs, who lived in Silicone Valley, California, died on Wednesday surrounded by his family. Apple said it was "deeply saddened" by the news.

A company spokesman said: "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."

9 PHOTOS
Jobs done: Apple's finest creations
See Gallery
Tributes paid to Apple pioneer Jobs

Apple I (1976): Apple's first product was a computer for hobbyists and engineers, made in small numbers. Wozniak, left, designed it and Jobs dealt with the funding and marketing. The computer went on sale priced at $666.66

Apple II (1977): One of the first successful personal computers, the Apple II was designed as a mass-market product, retailing at $1,298, and was the first personal computer to feature colour graphics. Several upgrades for the model followed, and the product line continued until 1993. It was so popular that Jobs' fortune exceeded $100 million by the time he turned 25.

Lisa (1983): Following a visit to Xerox's research centre in Palo Alto, California, Jobs was inspired to build the first commercial computer with a graphical user interface, with icons, windows and a cursor controlled by a mouse. It was the foundation for today's computer interfaces, but the Lisa, which cost a whopping $9,995, was too expensive to be a commercial success.

Macintosh (1984): The Macintosh was heralded by an epic advert shown during the Super Bowl, directed by Ridley Scott, which referenced George Orwell's 1984. Like the Lisa, the Mac had a graphical user interface, but it was faster and at $2,495, a quarter of the price. People soon realised its potential for desktop publishing.

iMac G3 (1998): In 1985, Jobs and Apple's CEO, John Sculley clashed, leading to his and Wozniak's resignation from the company. When Jobs returned to Apple 11 years later, Apple was struggling. The radical iMac was the first step towards healing the ailing company. It was strikingly designed as a bubble of blue plastic that enclosed the monitor and computer. It went on sale priced at $1,299.

iPod (2001): In 2001, the game well and truly changed when the first iPods went on sale. The first generation of iPod cost $499 (£400), but as Apple updated and modified the winning formula, prices came down. Of course, it wasn't the first digital music player with a hard drive, but it was the first successful one. The iPod's success prepared the way for the iTunes music store and the iPhone.

iTunes (2001): Apple also introduced iTunes in 2001 - a media-playing computer programme, useful for playing and organising music and videos. The music store was added in 2003, with 200,000 songs at 99 cents, or 79p, each, giving people a convenient way to buy music legally online. iTunes is now an integral part of Apple software: the iPhone cannot be used without first 'synching' with the owner's personal iTunes.

iPhone (2007): If the iPod laid the foundations, then the touch-screen iPhone is Apple's towering glory. The world was introduced to 'apps', which made the phone a device not just for making calls but for managing money, storing photos, playing games and browsing the web. Apple is now the world's most profitable maker of phones, and the influence of the iPhone is evident in all smartphones. The current model, the iPhone 4, sells for $749 (£612), and the arrival of the iPhone 5 is eagerly anticipated.

iPad (2010): Dozens of companies, including Apple, had created tablet computers before the iPad, but none caught on. The iPad finally cracked the code, creating a whole new category of computer practically by itself. In the case of the iPad, Jobs, famed for identifying and creating the next big thing, seems to have created a market where none existed. The highest spec iPad currently retails at $699 (£659).

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE


A statement released by his family added: "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."

The father-of-four started Apple Computer with high school friend Steve Wozniak in his garage in 1976 but was forced out a decade later. He returned in the mid-1990s and transformed Apple into one of the world's most powerful companies.

Just two months ago the frail-looking businessman resigned as the company's CEO due to his health, but said he would continue to play a leadership role. He was replaced by Apple's chief operating officer, Tim Cook, and took the role of chairman of the company's board.

Mr Jobs, described by many as an industry oracle who revolutionised computing, survived pancreatic cancer in 2004 before receiving a liver transplant in 2009. He had taken three spells of leave over the past several years, with the most recent spell in January.
Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS