Apple Maps Manager Williamson Reportedly Fired
November 28, 2012

Another One Bites The Dust: Apple’s Eddy Cue Fires Maps Manager

Michael Harper for — Your Universe Online

In the waning days of October, Apple performed a little spring cleaning in their executive offices, cutting loose head of retail John Browett and Head of iOS Software Scott Forstall.

While no official word was given, it was easy for many to assume why these men were fired. Apple retail had become a mess during Browett´s short tenure, earning a few in-depth and provocative reviews into alleged lay-offs and low pay.

Just hours after its release, Apple´s Map in iOS 6 had become a laughing stock, with all the appropriate memes and Web sites promptly created, as per the modern culture. Scott Forstall was in charge of Maps, therefore Scott Forstall must go. Several news sources cited unnamed Apple employees who also claimed Forstall and Sir Jony Ive, Apple´s designer, did not get along and even refused to work with one another. Some even said Forstall refused to sign Tim Cook´s apology for the bungle that Maps had become.

Eddy Cue stepped in to take over many of Forstall´s responsibilities, including Maps.

Yesterday evening, news had surfaced that there´s been another Map-related firing within 1 Infinite Loop, as Eddy Cue has now fired Richard Williamson, the manager directly responsible for the troubled Maps app.

Unlike the firing of Browett and Forstall, Apple has not officially announced this lineup change on their Web site or through their spokesperson.

Bloomberg instead is reporting this story, citing Unnamed Sources Familiar With the Matter. Both Bloomberg and the New York Times have reached out to Williamson to confirm this news, but haven´t heard anything in return.

Apple´s Maps in iOS 6 is their first attempt at building a mapping app without Google´s data running in the backend. The new Maps app uses some of Apple´s own data as well as data from TomTom and Waze. When it was released with iOS 6, many people, particularly overseas, found their addresses and favorite landmarks to have been moved or completely removed. Further still, Maps in iOS 6 shipped without public transit information, a critical feature the Apple-and-Google Maps once had.

“We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make maps better,” said Cook in his apology following the Maps debacle.

Eddy Cue, who is said to be known internally as the “Project Resuscitator,” was brought in to work the same magic he had previously conjured up following the MobileME blunder. (MobileME later became iCloud)

Eddy Cue also oversees the wildly successful App Store and iTunes and was pivotal in some of the important agreements between Apple and the music companies.

According to Bloomberg, insiders have also said Cue is becoming hands on with Maps, seeking advice from mapping professionals and urging TomTom to fix their landmark data. It´s also suspected that Cue has removed Williamson to install new leadership himself, rather than rely on the old guard set in place by Forstall.