(Bernama) -- The Apple chairman and former Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs passed away on Wednesday after a long struggle with pancreatic cancer. He was 56 years old, reported China's Xinhua news agency. Steve's brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives, Apple said in a statement. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve. The American computer entrepreneur and inventor had been suffering from various health issues following the seven-year anniversary of his surgery for a rare form of pancreatic cancer in August 2004. Apple announced in January that he would be taking an indeterminate medical leave of absence, with Jobs then stepping down from his role as CEO in late August 24. His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene Powell, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts, Xinhua quoted the statement as saying. Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being, the company said in a statement. 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 this spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.

Apple has also put up the following website in memory. They're asking for thoughts, memories, and condolences to be shared by way of this email address: rememberingsteve@apple.com

While, Jobs' family, in a statement said that: Steve died peacefully surrounded by his family. We are grateful for the support and kindness of those who share our feelings for Steve. We know many of you will mourn with us, and we ask that you respect our privacy during our time of grief.

Apple's website has changed to Steve Jobs: 1955-2011, along with the most iconic picture in which the scraggly bearded charismatic visionary posed with one hand up to his chin. One of the most legendary businessmen in American history, Jobs turned three separate industries on their head in the 35 years he was involved in the technology industry.

Personal computing was invented with the launch of the Apple II in 1977. Legal digital music recordings were brought into the mainstream with the iPod and iTunes in the early 2000s, and mobile phones were never the same after the 2007 debut of the iPhone. Jobs played an instrumental role in the development of all three, and managed to find time to transform the art of computer-generated movie-making on the side.

The invention of the iPad in 2010, a touch-screen tablet computer his competitors flocked to reproduce, was the capstone of his career as a technologist. A conceptual hybrid of a touch-screen iPod and a slate computer, the 10-inch mobile device was Jobs' vision for a more personal computing device.

In 1986, Jobs bought The Graphics Group (later renamed Pixar) from Lucasfilm's computer graphics division for the price of $10 million. Due to his young age, great wealth, and charisma, after Apple's founding Jobs became a symbol of his company and industry. When TIME named the computer as the 1982 Machine of the Year, it published a long profile of him as the most famous maestro of the micro. Jobs was prominently featured in three films about the history of the personal computing industry. Jobs remained Chairman of the Board at the company, as well as director and an Apple employee. He recommended that company Chief Operating Officer (COO) Tim Cook take his place as CEO. On Tuesday, Cook gave his first keynote address as CEO, unveiling the new iPhone 4S.