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Tim Cook Apologizes For Losing The Plot On Maps

The CEO pens a mea culpa and suggests customers navigate off to other mapping services until Apple resolves the issue. Meanwhile, some critics are calling the whole thing a win for Apple.

Tim Cook Apologizes For Losing The Plot On Maps

On Friday afternoon, a new button appeared on the front page of the Apple website. Entitled “A letter to our customers regarding Maps,” it led to an apology from Tim Cook, the tech firm’s CEO. Using phrases such as “we fell short” and “we are extremely sorry,” it seems to have taken the wind out of Apple’s detractors’ and naysayers’ sails. (In fine tech tradition, it also did a great job of blowing the firm’s trumpet, chucking some impressive download figures and the like. But hey.)

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Farhad Manjoo claims that this is the battle that won the maps war–for Apple. Interesting stuff–and he’s got a point. Would the firm have done this if Steve Jobs were at the helm? Probably not. And will the Maps debacle hit Apple where it hurts–in sales? Definitely not.

Maybe Apple will usher in a new age of humility for tech firms. We almost saw it with Nokia last month, with its apology for using camera trickery to advertise its Lumia 920 smartphone. But Apple’s masterstroke may have been to suggest to customers that they use their rivals’ services until the company gets its maps working the way it wants them to work.

About the author

My writing career has taken me all round the houses over the past decade and a half--from grumpy teens and hungover rock bands in the U.K., where I was born, via celebrity interviews, health, tech and fashion in Madrid and Paris, before returning to London, where I now live. For the past five years I've been writing about technology and innovation for U.S.

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