Keep in mind that this is Apple we’re talking about, a company that has arguably shown incredible skill in realizing what the public has wanted before the public ever realized they wanted it. Apple introduced the iPhone and iPad and literally redefined two entire markets.
So when they make a mistake, it’s pretty jolting. Especially when you discover that Apple knew for months that absolutely everybody hated Maps, including their own developers. We know this because the developers haven’t been shy about sharing their months of disdain with the tech press.
Or, as the Atlantic puts it:
“The mood amongst the developers seemed to be that the maps were so shockingly bad that reporting individual problems was futile. What was needed wasn’t so much an interface for reporting a single point as incorrect, but for selecting an entire region and saying ‘all of this—it’s wrong.”
In Apple’s defense, Google is now a major competitor and it’s unclear whether this was the result of Apple’s arrogance or Google demanding a huge chunk of change, or both. Apple knew, one way or the other, that Maps was going to be a minor disaster, though, and really should have tried harder to brace everyone for impact.
And we’re not beating on Tim Cook here. Aside from Maps, we actually loved iOS 6, and the iPhone 5 has been getting rapturous reviews from even the most entitled of gadget reviewers and selling like hotcakes. Apple isn’t losing its mojo. But it is, apparently, unable to follow honest direction.