The British designer, who is the creative brain behind the sleek minimalism and contours of Apple products such as the iPad, iPod and iPhone, will hand day-to-day responsibility for industrial and software design over to two colleagues from 1 July.
Richard Howarth will become vice-president of industrial design, covering product design. Alan Dye has been appointed vice-president of user interface design, responsible for the architecture of software for mobile and desktop devices.
Ive, who was knighted in 2012 for his contribution to design, will now have a more overarching role, including the overhaul of Apple’s high street stores, the firm's Cupertino-based campus and its product packaging.
Ive’s promotion was revealed in an interview in The Telegraph, in which technophile Stephen Fry talked to Ive and Apple chief executive Tim Cook.
Tech blog 9to5Mac subsequently published an internal memo sent to Apple staff by Cook, in which he described Ive as "one of the most talented and accomplished designers of his generation".
Cook wrote: "As chief design officer, Jony will remain responsible for all of our design, focusing entirely on current design projects, new ideas and future initiatives."