Scott Forstall, the head of Apple’s iOS division, was the most high-profile departure in a major management reshuffle announced by the firm last night. Forstall – at Apple since 1997 – was often touted as a successor to Steve Jobs, but appears to have paid the price for Apple’s ill-fated foray into maps on iOS6.
The firm also confirmed the departure of retail head John Browett, who had joined just six months ago from UK electronics group Dixons.
The changes mark the first major reshuffle under CEO Tim Cook, who took charge following the death of Steve Jobs just over a year ago.
Relations between Cook and Forstall are thought to have soured in the aftermath of the maps fiasco, with Forstall reportedly refusing to sign a public apology over the matter – leaving Cook to apologise alone.
Browett's departure is thought to be linked to reports that he sought to reduce Apple retail staff in a bid to prioritise profits over customer service.
In a statement, Apple said the changes would "encourage even more collaboration between the company's world-class hardware, software and services teams".
Craig Federighi replaces Forstall and will lead both the iOS and OS X platforms in order to “bring together the OS teams.”
Design guru Jonathan Ive will “provide leadership and direction for Human Interface (HI) across the company,” while Eddy Cue will head an enlarged online services division, adding Siri and Maps alongside products such as iTunes.
Bob Mansfield will lead a new group, Technologies, which “combines all of Apple’s wireless teams across the company in one organisation.”
Forstall will leave Apple next year and serve as an advisor to CEO Tim Cook in the interim. A replacement for Browett is underway.