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One year after Steve Jobs

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NEW YORK (CNN) - One year after the death of Apple founder Steve Jobs, the company continues to shine.

Not everyone was sure what would happen when news of his death broke October 5, 2011, but it's proved to be an extraordinary year for the tech giant.

You can thank CEO Tim Cook for that. Apple shares are up nearly 80 percent, a clear sign that investors are confident in the CEO, who has worked at Apple for 14 years. Shares recently topped $700, the company's market cap hit $400 billion, $500 billion and $600 billion this year. All that while the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5 and the new iPad broke sales records in their opening days.

Cook took over a company that was already in a strong position. Still, he has put his own distinct stamp on Apple.

Insiders say there's a different feel at the company. It's taken on some characteristics of Tim Cook - more relaxed, approachable and open.

Cook isn't an inventor like Jobs was, though. That means product-wise, he may need to prove himself. Most of the gadgets launched over the past year started under Steve Jobs so the big question going forward is: can Cook put out groundbreaking products like Jobs did?