Fans of Apple, who are a very large presence in the realm of social media, dominated the online conversation last week. But while the expectation was that the October 4 unveiling of the company’s latest version of the iPhone would be the focus, the October 5 news that Apple co-founder Steve Jobs passed away from pancreatic cancer changed the narrative dramatically.

For the week of October 3-7, discussion of the new Apple iPhone was the top story on blogs, according to the New Media Index from the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. And the passing of Jobs was the top story on Twitter and the fourth leading subject on blogs.

Bloggers have been anticipating Apple’s unveiling of its newest iPhone for more than two months as the company released little information about the device. In fact, rumors about the new iPhone have been one of the top stories on blogs for eight of the past 10 weeks. And much of that speculation came to an end when new Apple CEO Tim Cook finally delivered an October 4 address introducing the iPhone 4S. The unveiling, which was streamed online, allowed the blogosphere to continue its fascination with the product-especially now that it had actual specifics to discuss.

Despite the fact that the Apple online store was flooded with orders in the first 24 hours, the initial responses mostly voiced disappointment that the new smartphone was not more advanced-perhaps reflecting the level of pre-release excitement about the device.

Those complaints, however, seemed to become almost irrelevant one day later as news broke of Jobs’ death. Not only had the company been popular online, but its former CEO also generated a lot of attention. The week in August when Jobs announced his resignation, the news was the leading subject on Twitter.

The news of his passing hit fans hard and many used social media to share their thoughts.

According to Twitter, there were 6,049 posts per second immediately after the news broke at 8 p.m. Eastern time, one of the highest levels of activity in the site’s history. In all, there were nearly 5 million posts on Twitter about the subject that evening, according to the firm Crimson Hexagon. By Thursday, there were more than 3,000 videos posted on YouTube labeled “Steve Jobs” according to the New York Times, most of which included people sharing their appreciation for the inventor and their sadness in his passing. A