Apple iPhone software and retail chiefs leaving company


Apple Inc said on Monday its iPhone software chief and its head of retail would leave, a major executive shake-up that follows embarrassing problems with the company's new mapping software and disappointing quarterly results.

The moves, which come a little more than a year into Tim Cook's tenure as Apple's chief executive, were described by the company as a way to increase "collaboration" across its hardware, software and services business.

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Apple said that Scott Forstall, one of the original architects of the Mac operating system and head of its smartphone software, would leave next year. It said he would serve as an advisor to Cook in the interim.

Forstall was the executive behind the panned Apple Maps app, and Apple said responsibility for maps and Siri, the voice search assistant, would be taken over by another longtime executive, Eddy Cue.

Critics of the maps debacle, which led CEO Tim Cook to apologize to customers, had been calling for Forstall's head. "Does Apple have a Scott Forstall problem?" Fortune editor Philip Elmer-Dewitt wrote on Sept 29.

Apple said a search is underway for a new retail chief to replace John Browett and that the retail team would report directly to Cook.

Browett took over as head of Apple's retail stores earlier this year, replacing Ron Johnson, who went on to become the CEO of JC Penney.

Last week Apple delivered a second straight quarter of disappointing financial results, and iPad sales fell short of Wall Street's targets, marring its record of consistently blowing past investors' expectations.

(Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic; Editing by Richard Chang)