Apple CEO Tim Cook has suggested that iPhone customers use third-party apps or services while the company fixes its own widely-criticised Maps service.

Cook recommended that users download App Store titles such as Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or create links to the Google or Nokia map services on their device home screens.

Among the alternatives suggested are products from key Apple rivals.

Apple replaced Google’s mapping service with its own technology with the launch of iOS6, but has been hit by complaints about the new service lacking certain features and offering poor accuracy and detail.

In a letter published on the Apple website, Cook apologised for the “frustration” caused by the fact that the Apple Maps service fell short on Apple’s commitment to “deliver the best experience possible”.

Cook added that Apple is doing all it can to improve Maps and is using customer feedback to improve the service.