iOS Maps was obviously not one of Apple’s better efforts but that doesn’t mean the executive who oversaw its implementation has nothing to contribute to the tech world. Bloomberg reports that Facebook has hired Richard Williamson, the former Apple executive who headed the development of the ill-fated iOS Maps, to work as part of its mobile software team. Although iOS Maps was certainly a disaster for Apple, it doesn’t tell the full story of Williamson’s career — as Bloomberg notes, he worked at Apple for more than 10 years and was “one of the engineers assigned by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to build software for the iPhone.” So unless Facebook hired Williamson to oversee the creation of its own mapping application, it seems safe to say the company has found itself an experienced executive who can help improve its mobile offerings.
Apple (AAPL) is still plugging away in its efforts to improve its widely panned iOS Maps application and on Monday it paid an estimated $20 million to acquire indoor mapping company WifiSLAM. The Wall Street Journal reports that WifiSLAM “has developed ways for mobile apps to detect a phone user’s location in a building using Wi-Fi signals” and “has been offering the technology to application developers for indoor mapping and new types of retail and social networking apps.” An Apple spokesperson wouldn’t tell the Journal why Apple had acquired the company and only said that it “buys smaller technology companies from time to time.”
It seems that Apple (AAPL) isn’t done yet bringing on new people to help fix iOS Maps. AppleInsider reports that Apple has posted “seven map-related job listings” on its corporate website over just the past two days alone. The blog says that one particularly interesting posting is for “a computer-vision expert, who will take on improving Flyover, Apple’s 3D terrain visualization feature.” Earlier this month Apple said that it was seeking 10 software engineers to help fix iOS Maps by handling “various programming duties” as well as “navigation.”