Maps manager Richard Williamson reportedly shown the door at Apple
0. phoneArena 27 Nov 2012, 14:05 posted on
Richard Williamson has been sacked by none other than Eddy Cue, the soft-spoken Senior Vice President, said people familiar with the matter who declined to be identified...
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1. zothen (Posts: 12; Member since: 26 Mar 2012)
The person to get fired should be the one who came up with the plan to pre-maturely pull Google Maps and rush a half-baked in-house system in its place, not the person who was given the impossible task of "developing and launching Apple's first mapping effort" who most likely was not given enough time and resources to do so.
22. MeoCao (unregistered)
When profits are good, the CEO is always strong.
Apple still has momentum and it will take several year before the lack of innovation reveals itself.
11. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)
I have an educated guess on what happened with Apple Maps.
It's well documented that Steve Jobs was both loved and absolutely feared at Apple. He micromanaged a lot of larger aspects of both hardware and software. Because of that, most of Apple's apps performed just fine and snafu's were limited. Great for users, but I'm sure the individual teams were constantly stressed out and the heads of the department probably wanted a bit more control. Enter Tim Cook and folks got their freedom. Cook probably trusted the managers (selected by Jobs) and their teams to create and put out a product given more freedom. Most folks don't like being micromanaged.
Well, that didn't turn out so great. These guys were so focused on delivering on time instead of putting out a functional product. And I'm not all together convinced that it would have been a "Deliver Apple Maps by this date or you're fired!" situation. The next iteration of iTunes has been delayed because they want to put a bit more work into it. Apple Maps could have simply been put into Beta and released with a still functioning Google Maps.
Overall...I think this was a result of Cook trusting his underlings and them just not performing. Maybe Jobs' micromanaging was something they got used to. Maybe the teams didn't set deadlines and found themselves doing a lot of work right before the final deadline. Who knows. But I bet those days are over. Cook will still give a bit of freedom, but will probably also make sure the teams are making progress.
As for this firing...I'm surprised he didn't resign. You just forced your company to not only make a public apology, but then recommend other mapping apps to fill the void on your OS. And then drew even more attention to how awesome your direct competitor's mapping service is.
16. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5479; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Edit - sorting (instead of storting).
17. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5479; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Wow. Something went really haywire with PAs post database.... Nothing like losing an entire post.
23. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)
Are you posting from your Droid?
24. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5479; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Naw. I was posting from an iP5.... Seriously. I was testing the touch keyboard (intermittent fail of the P key on a friends phone that I was trying to replicate before going to the Apple store).
3. htc_prep (Posts: 303; Member since: 09 Oct 2009)
I 80 percent agree on this comment you made.. the only reason that I disagree is because I think that he should have suggested waiting until Apple maps was developed further to bring it to light. I think that if he were to have had said wait a minute let me develop this as a companion app or in the background keep an Google Maps on the os
I think that he would have still been in his current position
4. zothen (Posts: 12; Member since: 26 Mar 2012)
True, but in my experience, the person who is in charge of development doesn't really have that power to push back launch deadlines. They are told to meet a certain date regardless of how impossible it is with the given resources and if they don't like it or protest, they get shown the door.
Like you say, launching Apples maps as a companion or beta app or kept Google Maps as a fallback app would have been a sensible approach, but it seems someone arrogantly made the decision that the whole mapping thing was no big deal to implement. Yeah, if that was this guys decision, he screwed that one up.
7. McLTE (Posts: 635; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
Who said he didn't tell management that the product is NOT ready?
I'm willing to bet that he reported exactly that.. problems and the higher ups at Apple pushed it out anyway, in their effort to ditch google maps prematurely.
I bet he is nothing more than someone who did his best and is a scapegoat.
I bet NOBODY listened to him... and released maps anyway.
15. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)
So you're saying that Apple...Tim Cook knew that Apple Maps was as bad as everyone knows it is, but said f**k it, we are putting it out anyway? Even AntennaGate was a surprise to Apple. No one wants to make such a fool of themselves just to hit a deadline. I can't imagine for a moment that someone beyond Forstall said this was okay. Like I said...iTunes right now is delayed because Apple wants to take more time with it. They've delayed iTunes in the past as well.
5. PAPINYC (Posts: 2159; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)
There's no way this story is true because Apple Maps would have been incapable of finding said door.
9. AfterShock (Posts: 1899; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)
Instead of moving forward an fixing it right, hang nearest soul that has anything to do with it.
The apple way that keeps me away forever.
25. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5479; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
"Instead of moving forward an fixing it right, hang nearest soul that has anything to do with it."
Williamson was the manager in charge of the development of iMaps.... The general rule is that the manager is the guy who gets to fall on their sword if the project is a failure. If there is complicity in the failure further up the food chain, those folks generally get to fall on their swords as well. Would you reward someone for a failed performance (keeping one's job in the midst of a complete failure is generally construed as a reward)?
12. Slammer (Posts: 907; Member since: 03 Jun 2010)
---" has been sacked due to the half-baked product he and the team churned out at launch."---
This is corporate BS at its best. Apple launched this program under its branded name; Not under Richard Williamson. Company trying to save face by ejecting key members that didn't seem to have a problem under Steve Jobs. Steve had more control over what did or didn't leave the walls of Apple.
Tim doesn't have the finesse or tightly wound intimacy of the company that Steve had to lead the ship into smooth waters. I feel Apple's history will repeat itself without Steve running the company. Steve was Apple and Apple followed Steve. History proves no other could handle Apple.
20. lyndon420 (Posts: 1672; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)
Apple needs to bring in 'The Woz'. Make him the boss, pay him more than what he wants, he'll turn it into the tech company they should be and maybe Apple will start getting more respect from non-users.
21. Slammer (Posts: 907; Member since: 03 Jun 2010)
Woz is not management material. He obviously has the tech knowlege and history with Apple, but he severely lacks the leadership needed to succeed Steve Jobs' arrogance and persona that gave Apple the elevated interest from consumers.
13. MC1123 (Posts: 1221; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)
they should better do a major overhaul on that map!!!
its actually good for apple not to rely on google services now... and good for both of them...
26. kboo1995 (unregistered)
I am waiting for the day Tim Cook get fired
This guy is a jacka** whi knows nothing about tech
But instead of leaving the company he fires anybody in sight
Just go Tim Cook Go