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By Claire Reilly

SYDNEY, NSW: Steve Jobs has died at the age of 56, according to an official statement released by Apple today. Jobs’s health struggles had long been a cause for concern, with the former CEO announcing a medical leave of absence as recently as January 2011.

The co-founder of the Apple brand, Jobs announced his resignation as CEO on August 24, 2011, recommending current CEO Tim Cook as his successor. Jobs remained at Apple as director and chairman of Apple’s board.

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Here is Apple’s statement in full:

“Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being,” the statement read. “Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor.

“Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.”

Jobs’ death comes just one day after the much-anticipated announcement of Apple's newest product line-up, including the long-awaited addition to its smartphone line-up, the iPhone 4S, as well as a range of refreshed iPods.