Apple CEO Tim Cook has done what Apple is hardly ever willing to do — he apologized.
Customers had intensely given negative feedback about the new Maps application for the iPhone 5 and iOS 6, complaining of downfalls such as inaccurate information, poor directions and not offering turn-by-turn instructions on traveling through public transportation like subway systems and buses.
Cook heard the complaints and responded to customers' issues in a prepared statement.
"At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers," Cook wrote in the statement. "With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better."
He even went a step further and said that customers should use one of Apple's competitors' applications while the computer company works to fix the problems with its own version of Maps.
"While we're improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app," Cook said.
The apology is unusual for Apple, a company that is typically strictly averse to acknowledging its mistakes. But some communications analysts praised Cook for tackling the issue head on and speaking directly to customers about their dissatisfaction.
Jonathan Rick, a communications consultant and public relations professional who operates his own firm in Washington, D.C., was pleased with Cook's decision and his approach.
"Cook's letter is timely, significant, and well-executed," Rick said.
The CEO concluded his statement by promising customers they can still expect the excellence they are accustomed to from their Apple products.
"Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world," he said. "We know that you expect that from us, and we will keep working non-stop until Maps lives up to the same incredibly high standard."