Apple has fired the manager of its Maps service, according to Bloomberg. The move comes as Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue looks to rebuild the Maps team and fix problems with the service.
Eddy Cue & Apple Maps
Mr. Cue was put in charge of Maps and Siri after former iOS chief Scott Forstall was ousted in October. Problems with Maps, and Mr. Forstall's reported refusal to sign CEO Tim Cook's apology letter, have been cited by various sources as being a big part of why Mr. Forstall was sacked.
Citing unnamed sources "familiar with the move," Bloomberg said that Mr. Cue is seeking advice from mapping experts outside of Apple. He is also "prodding" TomTom, from whom Apple gets mapping data, to correct landmark information and navigational data.
Apple isn't commenting on the report, pointing instead to a statement from Mr. Cook in September when he promised that Apple Maps will improve.
Apple's reputation took a hit when it released iOS 6 with its own Maps service in September. Apple Maps has a great UI, but user reports of mistakes and navigation routing problems surfaced almost immediately, leading many to question Apple's decision to boot the successful and popular Google Maps.
To that end, Apple's reputation hit has been characterized as an unnecessary and self-inflicted wound. Apple could have introduced Apple Maps alongside Google Maps, for instance, telling customers that user interaction will allow the company to improve the service before its final rollout.
Had it done so, Mr. Cook wouldn't have needed to apologize and Mr. Cue might not be in charge of the service today. It turns out, however, that wishes are neither fishes nor horses, and the talented and very capable Mr. Cue gets to clean up the mess.
In the meanwhile, Apple has taken the unprecedented move of promoting rival mapping services. Nokia is introducing its own service called Here to iOS, and Google is prepping its own standalone app for submission to Apple.