The recent release of Apple’s iOS 6 saw the company ditch Google Maps in favor of their own mapping solution in order to bring features like turn-by-turn navigation and 3D flyover to its users. The result didn’t turn out so well, and the company has received a lot of backlash from its users. Apple CEO Tim Cook has addressed these issues and apologized today for all the problems.

In an open letter posted on Apple’s website, Cook issued a public apology to those that are experiencing trouble with Apple’s new Maps app. He mentioned that it “fell short” of the company’s high standard and he suggests using other third-party solutions instead while Apple works on improving their service.

The full apology letter is below:

To our customers,

At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. 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.

We launched Maps initially with the first version of iOS. As time progressed, we wanted to provide our customers with even better Maps including features such as turn-by-turn directions, voice integration, Flyover and vector-based maps. In order to do this, we had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up.

There are already more than 100 million iOS devices using the new Apple Maps, with more and more joining us every day. In just over a week, iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations. The more our customers use our Maps the better it will get and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback we have received from you.

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.

Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world. 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.

Tim Cook

Apple’s CEO

It’s surprising that Cook is recommending its users to use something other than its own apps. As much as Apple tries to prevent users from taking advantage of third-party apps, Cook is actually recommending the opposite and says to use other mapping apps like Waze, Bing, and Mapquest. It’s certainly something you don’t hear every day coming out of a CEO’s mouth, but I suppose Apple is being the bigger man in this situation and telling its users to have the best user experience possible no matter what apps are used.

[via SlashGear]