I am sure all of you saw my letter last week sharing something very personal with the Apple community. Unfortunately, the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well. In addition, during the past week I have learned that my health-related issues are more complex than I originally thought.
I have asked Tim Cook to be responsible for Apple's day to day operations, and I know he and the rest of the executive management team will do a great job. As CEO, I plan to remain involved in major strategic decisions while I am out. Our board of directors fully supports this plan.
I look forward to seeing all of you this summer.
This honestly comes as quite a surprise, especially given that Jobs just recently issued that note which seemed to be aimed at quelling fears of this exact situation bubbling up. In that letter -- sent just last week -- Jobs stated that a hormone imbalance was to cause for a recent noticeable weight loss, but that the ailment was being treated in a "relatively simple and straightforward" manner. This clearly calls that info out, and raises a number of questions about whether or not Apple and Jobs knew there was something more serious happening. Of course, this story puts the latest exclamation mark in a sentence strewn with flare-ups of news over Jobs' health which began with his gaunt appearance at last year's WWDC. Though Jobs battled pancreatic cancer in 2004, as far as we know he has been free of the disease since a complicated surgery known as the "whipple procedure," and this latest statement makes no connection otherwise.
One note of interest is that this isn't the first time Tim Cook has taken the reins at Apple. He held the spot in 2004 while Jobs was treated for and recovered from the aforementioned cancer.
Whatever the current case may be, here's hoping Jobs has a speedy recovery -- though what Apple's future looks like after this is anyone's guess.
Here's a quick little gallery of Steve Jobs' progression over the past three WWDCs:
Steve Jobs at WWDC '06, '07 and '08