Today’s open letter from Tim Cook is a treasure trove of information regarding Apple’s view of the iOS Maps fiasco, as well as the company’s actual reasons for pulling away from Google.
Initially reported by the WSJ-owned All Things D, Apple’s real reasons for renouncing Google Maps in favor of a proprietary offering have been confirmed today by Tim Cook himself, the head of Apple Inc.
The Jobsian letter, while apologetic, does well to inform the public that Apple had no choice but to try and make its own Maps application, all in the benefit of the customer.
Cook says, “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.”
He then confirms that, “In order to do this, we had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up.”
As noted above, this small (but valuable) piece of information had already been rumored by sources familiar with the matter.
“There were a number of issues inflaming negotiations, but voice navigation was the biggest,” one person familiar with the discussions between Google and Apple said. “Ultimately, it was a deal-breaker.”
Unfortunately, this sincere letter from Apple’s CEO will do little to appease the masses. As Cook himself admits, the fan base has come to expect a near-flawless experience with Apple products.
Messing up the key feature in iOS 6 was certainly one of the worst mistakes Apple could have made, even more so given that its release was directly tied to the iPhone 5 launch.
“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,” said Cook.
Well, we certainly hope they get there.