Lessons from Apple’s map app story
The old realities don’t change so easily and with Google Maps app returning to iPhones, we can once again conclude that: “Let the professional do the job”.
(the original photo is at: http://theamazingios6maps.tumblr.com/ )
For those who don’t know the story, here is quick recap:
The idea was that Apple thought they can replace Google Maps app from their next iPhones with their own home grown mapping application. So they did turn on the switch this when they launched iOS6.
What happened actually was a big dent to Apple’s stature as the best tech company that produces quality stuff. People were unable to find locations, would reach in strayed areas to meet snakes instead of their destination, would find doctors serving on the streets and so on. Some details here and some interesting screen shots here.
As a result Apple CEO Tim Cook had to make a personal apology on the website and it is speculated that two of the main guys (including iOS guru Scott Forstall and the Map team’s Manager) at Apple parted the ways due to this controversy. More details here.
Finally Google Map came back to iPhones on few days back to become the most downloaded app for iOS.
And the saga continues…
Do I need to talk about lessons as some of these are there already? 🙂 Well, let me emphasize on the professionals doing their job.
Google Maps being the best mapping solution is an acknowledged fact because they possess all the knowledge needed to build such app. You like it or not, but your competitor can be better at some places so there is no harm in giving them the credit. See Google didn’t refuse to build an app for iPhones thus supporting their competitor sell more phones than Android based phones. If all of us can learn to play a teamwork, where we multiply our strengths by calling in a professional do their part rather than becoming too smart to “do it all myself” failures, this perhaps is one of the biggest warnings 🙂
What other lessons you have from this story?