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Apple iPad development chief Bob Mansfield to retire

Apple announced yesterday that Bob Mansfield, senior vice president of hardware design, will retire.

Dan Riccio, current vice president of iPad hardware engineering, will transition to Mansfield's role over the next several months. The hardware team will continue to report to Mansfield until he leaves.

"Bob has been an instrumental part of our executive team, leading the hardware engineering organisation and overseeing the team that has delivered dozens of breakthrough products over the years," Tim Cook, Apple's CEO, said in a statement. "We are very sad to have him leave and hope he enjoys every day of his retirement."

Mansfield joined Apple in 1999 after Cupertino acquired Raycer Graphics, where he served as vice president of engineering. He has led the Mac hardware team since 2005, iPhone and iPad hardware engineering since 2010, and the iPad hardware team since the start.

Riccio joined Apple in 1998 as vice president of product design.

"Dan has been one of Bob's key lieutenants for a very long time and is very well respected within Apple and by the industry," Cook said. "Our hardware engineering team is the best engineering team on earth and will not miss a beat during the transition."

Last year, Apple's vice president of retail operations, Ron Johnson, who is credited with the creation of the Genius Bar, stepped down from the post he held for 11 years to serve as CEO of US department store JC Penney.