Apple fell far from its Tree with Apology
Apple’s CEO Tim Cook today released a public apology for the Apple Maps fiasco (see letter in its entirety below). iOS6 overall has received great reviews but the choice to remove Google Maps and replace it with a built from the ground up Apple Maps program, has caused a world of outrage for the usually arrogant company.
In the statement Cook admits to shortcomings with the program and states the company is “extremely sorry” for the frustrations the navigation application has caused. It really isn’t that the idea to provide a native program with integrated turn-by-turn navigation and additional features was a bad one just the program doesn’t work. Many are claiming that Steve Jobs would neither apologize for the blunder nor allow the program to be released with such shortcomings.
The new Apple Maps was highly anticipated and was set to save many money on monthly fees for navigation app users, bring the iPhone on par with similar features on competing devices, and provide an option that many people rely on daily. In a surprising part of the statement, Cook goes on to recommend competing solutions from Microsoft, Google, and others.
Though some are applauding the humble nature of the statement and think this is a positive change for Apple, I disagree. Though something needs to be done to fix the definitely failed application, providing a public apology and steering users towards competing solutions is not the answer. A better option would have been to explain as they did that they are taking action to fix the program and possibly provide access to an alternative solution at no charge to users.
Apple stock is slightly down upon release of the statement but it will be interesting to see if this has a bigger affect on investors who may see the change as weak considering the apparent differences from a Steve Jobs run organization. Quality assurance will have to come into question with future product releases and most of all Apple needs to get this problem fixed quickly.
Statement can be found here
To our customers,
At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.
We launched Maps initially with the first version of iOS. As time progressed, we wanted to provide our customers with even better Maps including features such as turn-by-turn directions, voice integration, Flyover and vector-based maps. In order to do this, we had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up.
There are already more than 100 million iOS devices using the new Apple Maps, with more and more joining us every day. In just over a week, iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations. The more our customers use our Maps the better it will get and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback we have received from you.
While we’re improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from theApp Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.
Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world. We know that you expect that from us, and we will keep working non-stop until Maps lives up to the same incredibly high standard.
Tim Cook Apple’s CEO