updated 02:36 pm EST, Tue November 27, 2012
Cue said to be bringing in new leadership for Maps group
Apple's senior VP for Internet software and services, Eddy Cue, has fired the executive in charge of iOS 6 Maps, Richard Williamson, according to Bloomberg sources. Although it's unknown if a replacement for Williamson has been lined up, one of the sources claims that Cue is planning to install a new leadership team in the Maps group. Meanwhile, another source says that a team is dedicated to fixing mapping mistakes, for instance upgrading UK satellite imagery or the labeling for US landmarks. The group is allegedly concentrating on the most obvious problems first.
The report suggests that Cue is also hunting for advice from mapping experts outside Apple. When the company made the transition to iOS 6 it ditched content from Google, its long-time partner on the Maps app. The replacement content has been widely criticized, not just for having missing or inaccurate data, but also for sometimes sporting ugly graphics, and for losing critical features such as Street View and public transportation directions.
Williamson is just the latest casualty of the Maps debacle. The most prominent firing has been Scott Forstall, formerly the head of iOS. Forstall is said to have been kicked out because of a refusal to sign an apology for Maps; he was also intensely disliked by some other executives, such as lead designer Jonathan Ive.