Apple's

(AAPL) - Get Report

Tony Fadell, a senior executive instrumental in the development of the iPod, is leaving Apple for personal reasons,

The Wall Street Journal

reports.

Mark Papermaster, a former executive for

IBM

(IBM) - Get Report

, will be joining Apple later this month to replace Fadell, the newspaper reports, citing people familiar with the matter.

Fadell is the senior vice president of Apple's iPod division. He also was part of the executive team involved in the development of the iPhone, which has become the fastest growing part of Apple's business. Fadell may still keep a role at Apple as a consultant, according to the

Journal

.

A spokeswoman for Apple said the company doesn't comment on "rumors and speculation," the

Journal

reports.

Apple has sold more than 160 million iPods since 2001. Sales of the devices now contribute about 20% of the company's overall business, the

Journal

reports. The company said it sold more than 6.8 million iPhones in its most recently reported quarter.

Papermaster is an IBM veteran who is known to be an expert in chip design and was one of the main architects behind the Power PC processor. IBM filed a lawsuit against Papermaster late last month, alleging that he breached a noncompete agreement that he had signed, according to the newspaper.

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This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.