Apple CEO Tim Cook, shown speaking at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference… (David Paul Morris / Bloomberg )
In a rare and surprising move, Apple has apologized for the shortcoming of its new Maps app through a letter posted online by Chief Executive Tim Cook.
"At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers," Cook said in the letter. "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."
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The new Maps app launched last Wednesday with the release of iOS 6 and marks the first time Apple has used software other than Google's for the iPhone's navigation. Instead, Apple rebuilt the app from the ground up and partnered with others.
Apple added a few new welcomed features to the app, but it also included many drawbacks, including poor directions, inaccurate information and no support for public transportation.
Cook acknowledged the app's shortcomings and encouraged Apple users to try alternatives while Apple Maps is improved.
"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," Cook said.
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In the letter, Cook explained that Apple decided to build its own map app in order to bring more features to it, such as voice navigation and Flyover, the company's new feature that 3-D generates maps in 3-D. This is what some people suspected as the reason for the change in software.
Cook also said that already more than 100 million devices running iOS 6 have searched for almost 500 million locations using the app. Cook said continued usage will improve the app, "and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback we have received from you."
"Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world," Cook said in conclusion. "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."
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