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What Jobs's exit means for Apple

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The shocking yet not entirely surprising news that Apple CEO Steve Jobs will sit out the next six months for health reasons gave the technology world a significant jolt. Mr. Jobs will retain his title, but Apple's long-time Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook will take over day-to-day activity during the absence.

Last week's Macworld expo gave fans and industry watchers an early glimpse of an Apple without Jobs. The iconic CEO remained mostly hidden, offering the spotlight to Apple's other top talent. But investors didn't like the new direction. Apple's stock has slid steadily since Macworld from $94 to yesterday's $85. Jobs's leave of absence, which leaked after markets closed Wednesday, pushed the stock to $79 in late trading.

Here's what Apple watchers are saying:

Robert ScobleScobleizer
"It’s too late to sell your Apple stock. If you sold it [Wednesday], you are a genius. But [Thursday]? You’ll be the biggest loser. Why? Apple has the best team, the best distribution, the best supply chain, the best management in the business. Everyone, from Palm to Microsoft to Google, wants to be like Apple. Hint: They can’t."

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