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Apple CEO Tim Cook Publicly Apologizes for Apple Maps

By - Source: Apple | B 35 comments

Apple CEO Tim Cook has publicly addressed the issues users are having with the new Apple Maps application that comes bundled with iOS 6.

Back in June, Apple announced that it would be leaving Google Maps behind when iOS 6 finally launched in the fall. However, when the mobile OS became available for download last Wednesday, many users found the mapping software to be quite bugged. Tim Cook this morning apologized to users for Maps' imperfections via an open letter posted to Apple's website.

Cook gave a similar explanation to the one we heard from an Apple spokesperson last week: That the application will get better with time and use. However, he also said that Apple was 'extremely sorry' for the frustration caused to customers and advised users to download alternatives while they wait for Apple Maps to improve. Bing, MapQuest and Waze were all named as options available via the App Store, however, Cook also highlighted the web versions of Google Maps or Nokia Maps as viable alternatives.

Check out Cook's full letter below:

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 the App 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

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  • 24 Hide
    billybobser , September 28, 2012 3:48 PM
    "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."

    I mean, it's not like it was a bug that made it through testing. It was outright rubbish and they took for granted their fanbase.

    Nobody needed a new iphone right now, and the features are pathetic. Bigger chip, more power, bigger screen to hide bigger battery to compensate for power hunger. I even felt insulted when "it's the best thing to happen to the iphone since the iphone". Marketting really had to dig deep for this shocker.
  • 20 Hide
    Ragnar-Kon , September 28, 2012 4:08 PM
    I'm gonna have to give Tim Cook props on this one. Not only did he apologize, but he didn't bother sugar coating it, AND he pointed out several solutions customers can use that are honestly direct competitors with Apple.

    Very un-Apple like of him.
  • 14 Hide
    jojesa , September 28, 2012 3:51 PM
    I love this one:
    iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations.
    Because users where unable to find where they were going or what they were looking for.
    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.
    Users of iOS 6 = Apple guinea pigs
Other Comments
  • 24 Hide
    billybobser , September 28, 2012 3:48 PM
    "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."

    I mean, it's not like it was a bug that made it through testing. It was outright rubbish and they took for granted their fanbase.

    Nobody needed a new iphone right now, and the features are pathetic. Bigger chip, more power, bigger screen to hide bigger battery to compensate for power hunger. I even felt insulted when "it's the best thing to happen to the iphone since the iphone". Marketting really had to dig deep for this shocker.
  • 14 Hide
    jojesa , September 28, 2012 3:51 PM
    I love this one:
    iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations.
    Because users where unable to find where they were going or what they were looking for.
    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.
    Users of iOS 6 = Apple guinea pigs
  • 2 Hide
    curiosul , September 28, 2012 3:52 PM
    This thing makes for a very interesting situation (which I'm sure will occur):
    fanboys defending the iPhone 5/iOS 6 against the Apple's CEO.
  • 5 Hide
    itsnotmeitsyou , September 28, 2012 4:02 PM
    Apple doesn't realize how fast they will loose the huge customer base they have built if they start making peoples lives harder rather than easier.

    Tim Cook needs to test this shit and learn to say no to the board members.
  • 14 Hide
    Au_equus , September 28, 2012 4:03 PM
    Props to Cook for not further insulting your customers' intelligence by giving the you're-holding-it-wrong speech. your commercials are dumb enough. better yet just put google maps back on. Oh wait...
  • 20 Hide
    Ragnar-Kon , September 28, 2012 4:08 PM
    I'm gonna have to give Tim Cook props on this one. Not only did he apologize, but he didn't bother sugar coating it, AND he pointed out several solutions customers can use that are honestly direct competitors with Apple.

    Very un-Apple like of him.
  • -3 Hide
    curiosul , September 28, 2012 4:10 PM
    itsnotmeitsyouApple doesn't realize how fast they will loose the huge customer base they have built if they start making peoples lives harder rather than easier.Tim Cook needs to test this shit and learn to say no to the board members.


    YOU don't realise the power of Apple's marketing (indoctrinating) machine.
    Only they can take an existing product (technology actually), strip some very important features, put a catchy name on it, sell it as something magical (through commercials) and convince their customers it's the best thing on earth. I'm talking about skype/video conferencing.

    That statement is mostly intended for investors, journalists and other people that can think clearly about the subject.
  • 9 Hide
    luciferano , September 28, 2012 4:25 PM
    itsnotmeitsyouSure, Apple has done that since the beginning. The mouse, the GUI, Click and Drag, MP3 players. What Apple does, or has done, is optimize the user interaction. Win kids call this "dumbing it down" and well it may be. But it works. They took their userbase and gave them an integrated video conferencing option. Problem? Your tangent is irrelevant.


    It sure as hell didn't work for their Maps app.
  • 6 Hide
    itsnotmeitsyou , September 28, 2012 4:27 PM
    luciferanoIt sure as hell didn't work for their Maps app.

    I wont argue with that.
    Its good to see them sweating something.
  • 13 Hide
    cozalp , September 28, 2012 4:31 PM
    Steve Jobs never would have apologized. He would have blamed the customers for not using the app properly, which would have increased the sales of iphone 5 even further.
  • 3 Hide
    Bloob , September 28, 2012 4:34 PM
    At least they admit it this time. Quite surprised they recommended competing platforms.

    Alternatives:
    m.maps.nokia.com/
    maps.google.com/
  • 1 Hide
    curiosul , September 28, 2012 4:39 PM
    itsnotmeitsyouSure, Apple has done that since the beginning. The mouse, the GUI, Click and Drag, MP3 players. What Apple does, or has done, is optimize the user interaction. Win kids call this "dumbing it down" and well it may be. But it works. They took their userbase and gave them an integrated video conferencing option. Problem? Your tangent is irrelevant.



    What I meant to say is that it takes a LOT more that an almost failed product (maps, scratches on the aluminium, "possessed" touchscreen) to convince most of the "followers" that Apple products are not made only of aluminium, glass and magic.
    My concern however, is that this (semi)failure will slow down smartphone development: if you're an non-Apple product manufacturer and you realise that having the best phone (from a specs' point of view) is not enough to have the most sales, then you concentrate more on what matters for most people: nice commercials, gimmicks, celebrity endorsements.

    I REALLY hope I'm wrong!
  • 1 Hide
    Murissokah , September 28, 2012 4:51 PM
    It's funny how the other day a coworker was telling me about this new map app that would put google maps to shame. Now the CEO is apologizing for it. I guess tey could sell rocks and people would be more than willing to buy them.
  • -3 Hide
    tuffjuff , September 28, 2012 4:51 PM
    jaquithI remember how bad Google maps were and often had to use Yahoo, of all things, maps. Give it time and if and when you find a problem then 'Report' the error. Personally I use MotionX GPS Drive, and it beats them all.


    +1 for MotionX. They charge either $5/month or $40 a year, if I'm not mistaken, but often they'll have it on sale. I got a year subscription for $10 this past spring.

    Google Maps was never that faston either my iPhone 4 and iPad 2, or heck, even on my PC, compared to competing products. I don't know if it's THAT many people using it or what the deal is, but I've resorted to Bing Maps for many searches because Google Maps on PC is painfully slow half the time.

    I've had no issues with Apple Maps in the Green Bay, WI area. Sure, there are going to be growing pains, but to be fair, there are other products out there. And if Google was so concerned about ad revenue, it's not like they haven't had at least 3 months to work on their own competing product. Apple isn't making you use their app, they just don't see the point in paying a competitor royalties on every phone they sell. Not that hard to figure out.

    It's cool to see Tim Cook being humble, and not a douche, like Steve Jobs always used to be, though.
  • -3 Hide
    tuffjuff , September 28, 2012 4:52 PM
    jojesaI love this one:iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations.Because users where unable to find where they were going or what they were looking for.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.Users of iOS 6 = Apple guinea pigs



    Guinea pigs... kind've like anybody who's ever used an Android cell phone. ;) 
  • 8 Hide
    curiosul , September 28, 2012 5:07 PM
    tuffjuffGuinea pigs... kind've like anybody who's ever used an Android cell phone.

    You are right:
    Google maps with navigation OFFICIALLY is beta.
    iOS 6 maps app OFFICIALLY is not beta.

    So, OFFICIALLY, google maps users are beta testers.
    Too bad that the two companies have such different standards for labelling something as beta ...
  • -7 Hide
    robochump , September 28, 2012 5:08 PM
    Sure Maps is a staple App but the Android fan boys make it sound like the entire phone is dead...lol. Most dont realize that Apple was forced to go with their own Maps service because Google refused to offer turn by turn directions and other options to the iOS version of Google Maps.

    To me this is far from a huge deal and iHaters use anything negative to go over board with it. Hilarious. Now QQ about the cables, that is even more hilarious!!!
  • 1 Hide
    robochump , September 28, 2012 5:11 PM
    MurissokahIt's funny how the other day a coworker was telling me about this new map app that would put google maps to shame. Now the CEO is apologizing for it. I guess tey could sell rocks and people would be more than willing to buy them.


    Yeah, I knew iOS6 Maps would be rough and Google has done a great job with their Maps and have refined it for years. But lets not forget iOS6 Maps is free. Not an excuse to suck but will improve just like Google Maps did over time. Sooner the better tho!!! lol
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