Steve Jobs, the business magnate who helped revolutionise the PC, music and mobile entertainment industries, has passed away aged 56.
"Apple has lost a visionary and a creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being," read a message from Apple on its website.
Jobs resigned as Apple CEO on August 25th. He was appointed chairman of the board but had not been seen in public since.
Apple has not disclosed details of Jobs's passing. The tech pioneer had previously suffered from pancreatic cancer.
"Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor," the Apple statement continued.
"Steve leaves behind a company only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple."
Jobs is often cited as the visionary behind products like the iPod and iPhone and services like iTunes, with his focused management style demanding detailed refinements of device designs before they are ready for the public.
He co-founded Apple in 1976 and helped establish the firm's Macintosh computers, though internal disputes resulted in him leaving the company in 1985.
Twelve years later he rejoined the company as part of a last-ditch rescue operation. Apple was, at the time, struggling to find success in the Microsoft-dominated PC landscape.
But with the invention of the iPod, iPhone and iPad, Apple's fortunes flew. Jobs leaves the company with a bigger market capitalisation than its oldest rival, and the acclaim of being the biggest technology company in the world.
Jobs is survived by his wife and four children.
An email address has been established allowing people to share their memories of Steve Jobs with the Apple community.