Last night Steve Jobs (who is listed as a co-inventor in an amazing 313 patents) announced he's stepping down as CEO of Apple and Tim Cook (who has already filled in as CEO when Jobs took a medical leave in 2009 and again earlier this year) is the new CEO. You can read the full resignation letter at TheNextWeb. And, although this wasn't in the letter, we believe it was implied:
Although some people on Twitter seem to think this means Steve Jobs is on death's doorstep, what is more likely is that he has awesome timing. Right now is an ideal time for Apple to transition to a new CEO with minimal damage to their stock price:
A month ago they reported record quarterly earnings in a period with no significant product releases, no back to school or holiday boost, all amid what turned out to be a grotesquely challenging three months for competitors like Dell and HP. They were, for a brief period, the most valuable company in the world. Incredible. [Gizmodo]
In addition to the company's current strength (they even have more cash than the U.S. government), one month from now, when this news has faded from the headlines, they are going to be releasing the next iPhone on all three of America's largest carriers. It's a more affordable iPhone intended for the mass market. In other words, it should bring back (and then some) the entire $18 billion shaved from the company's market cap in after-hours trading last night, and Cook will be fully entrenched as CEO when it happens. To sum up, Steve Jobs ain't dead yet, but he picked a good time to retire.
After the jump we've got some funny pictures and interesting quotes and a relevant video.
Steve Jobs burns Microsoft:
“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.” -- Steve Jobs [The Wall Street Journal, May 25, 1993]
“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. 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.” [Stanford commencement speech, June 2005 (video here)]