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Head of iPhone and iPad Software, Scott Forstall, to Leave Apple

Apple(CUPERTINO, Calif.) -- Silicon Valley isn’t letting Hurricane Sandy get in the way of big tech announcements Monday. On the heels of Google and Microsoft’s big product launches Monday afternoon, Apple has just announced a big executive shake-up.

Scott Forstall, the senior vice president of iOS (the software made for the iPhone and iPad), will be leaving the company next year. In his absence, Jony Ive, Apple’s lead hardware designer, will take over leadership of software design.

“His incredible design aesthetic has been the driving force behind the look and feel of Apple’s products for more than a decade,” Apple said of Ive in a company press release.

The reasons for Forstall’s departure are not given in Apple’s announcement. However, Forstall has been responsible for Apple’s Maps and Siri features, both of which were criticized as half-baked at the time of launch. When iOS 6 and the iPhone 5 launched in September, Apple was knocked for its inaccurate Maps; CEO Tim Cook was forced to apologize to customers. According to Apple, Eddy Cue will now oversee Siri and Maps.

Apple announced that head of retail John Browett is also leaving. Apple announced that it will be looking for a replacement.

Apple unveiled its new iPad Mini last week and announced that it had sold 27 million iPhones in the 4th quarter.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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