Jobs resigned as CEO of Apple in August, handing over responsibilities to COO Tim Cook, and had been battling cancer for the past few years.
He announced he was suffering pancreatic cancer in 2004 and in 2009 he had a liver transplant.
Jobs was the high-profile face of Apple who launched its most iconic products, including the iMac computer, the iPod, iPhone and the iPad.
His death comes just two days after the launch of the latest iPhone device, the 4S.
A statement on the Apple website says: “Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being.
“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 buillt, and his spirit will forever be in the foundation of Apple.”
Tributes for Jobs from the tech industry and other high profile fans have flooded in since the news of his death was announced.
Bill Gates, former chief executive of Microsoft, says: “The world rarely sees someone who has had the profound impact Steve has had, the effects of which will be felt for many generations to come. For those of us lucky enough to get to work with him, it’s been an insanely great honor. I will miss Steve immensely.”
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook thanked Jobs for being a “mentor and a friend”.
“Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you,” he adds.
President Barack Obama also sent his condolences, saying he “change the way each of us sees the world”.
He says: “The world has lost a visionary. And there may be no greater tribute to Steve’s success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented.
Tim Cook, current Apple CEO, says the company is planning a celebration of “Steve’s extraordinary life” in the coming days.
More to follow…