Tim Cook apologizes for Apple Maps, points users to third-party apps

By on September 28, 2012, 10:00 AM

Apple CEO Tim Cook has issued an official statement apologizing for falling short in delivering the best experience possible with the new Maps app. In his letter, Cook explains that in order to include features like turn-by-turn directions and voice integration, Apple “had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up”. He never addressed why but we already have a pretty good idea: they failed to reach a mutually beneficial compromise with Google over the aforementioned features in Google Maps for iOS.

The apology may win Apple some goodwill with disgruntled customers. Cook says they’ll keep working non-stop until Maps lives up to the high standards that are expected of their products. Interestingly enough, the letter also suggests that users frustrated with Apple Maps can try third-party alternatives by downloading map apps like Bing, MapQuest and Waze from the App Store, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on their home screens to the web apps.

Despite all the criticism surrounding the switch to a new maps system, customers have continued to buy the iPhone 5 in droves and update their existing devices to iOS 6. Less than a couple of weeks since its release, already more than 100 million iOS devices are using the new Apple Maps, with that number growing every day.

Here's the full text from Apple CEO Tim Cook's letter:

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




User Comments: 18

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ghasmanjr ghasmanjr said:

That picture up top is amazing.

slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Steve is rolling in his grave. He would never have even begun to suggest using third party alternatives, especially from Google and Nokia!

1 person liked this | VitalyT VitalyT said:

I do not accept the apology.

Mr Cook would have to send me a free iPhone, for starters. And make sure this time it does not exude residue of Chinese sweat and blood from it.

1 person liked this | j05hh j05hh said:

Is that what the roads are suppose to look like after an earthquake? haha.. Samsung Galaxy S3 FTW!

Adhmuz Adhmuz, TechSpot Paladin, said:

No thats what roads look like in Montreal, should try driving here one day, its absolute bedlam. It's funny, this apology is as empty as the heads of the droves of sheeple buying Apple products. It's actually sad that a company like Apple can't hit something as simple as maps out of the park, seriously, they buy up companies specializing in this type of software and still can't get it done.

VitalyT VitalyT said:

For my vegan friends who like Apple...

It takes only 1 cow for McDonald's to squeeze out 1200 burgers. Apple kills 10 Chinese to make a single iPhone.

Keep it real.

Recipe7 Recipe7 said:

Yes, VitalyT, keep it real. As real as Cook giving free iPhones as starters. Hmm, I wonder what are enders, maybe replace him as CEO. I bet you would drive stocks through the roof.

Guest said:

Apple kills 10 people to make a single iPhone? Apple does enough on it's own without people making up silly and ridiculous stats. Apple has sold over 100M iPhones, so you really believe that Apple has killed over 1 billion people? That makes sense to you? China has got a lot of people, for sure, but you'd think someone would have reported that a country that had 1.3B people in 2011 has been reduced to just 300M.

Apple has a lot to not like about them. Make fun of their fanboys for defending a flawed map, but if you're going to just plain make shtuff up, at least make it reasonable.

avioza said:

Apple kills 10 people to make a single iPhone? Apple does enough on it's own without people making up silly and ridiculous stats. Apple has sold over 100M iPhones, so you really believe that Apple has killed over 1 billion people? That makes sense to you? China has got a lot of people, for sure, but you'd think someone would have reported that a country that had 1.3B people in 2011 has been reduced to just 300M.

Apple has a lot to not like about them. Make fun of their fanboys for defending a flawed map, but if you're going to just plain make shtuff up, at least make it reasonable.

I believe he was using Satire there... a little excessive perhaps but I think it went over your head.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

Hahaha, Guest is such a troll :P

And this is just an empty apology. They shouldn't have released such a crappy piece of software... again...

Panda218 Panda218 said:

I don't understand why apple just doesn't approve the Google maps application that Google has submitted to the app store... I mean I do understand, but I wish Apple wasn't so god damn stubborn.

VitalyT VitalyT said:

I was being ironic, but that apple isn't far from the tree

VitalyT VitalyT said:

Apple does exploit chinese as slaves, that's a fact.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Nice article image kind of reminds me of...

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

I like how in the second paragraph he makes it look like Maps has always been Apples'.

Guest said:

What about other bugs in iOS 6 and Mountain Lion? I still can't connect my iPhone to Facebook, it hangs on "verification", and passbook is just something terrible. Zoom swipe does not work in Mail and Safari (properly), etc, etc... Who'll apologize for those and, more important, fix them?

Guest said:

"Steve is rolling in his grave. He would never have even begun to suggest using third party alternatives, especially from Google and Nokia!"

That's what I worried most..

Guest said:

This is why I don't buy there's bad quality products anymore! It's all about greed , arogance and lack of respect!

How can you in the same latter talk about the best quality in the world and than say use someones als product till we fix this!? The should compensate not give a ceeap talk! Because the reason the situation is like this is because of theres greed and wanted to make more money ,now share that money with the people you riptoff. This latter was written since last year when they decided to not use google maps a d they realised that it would come to this..

Buy the next apple product ..you sure get it next time!

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