Apple is first to make tech fantastic, says Apple exec

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


That fantastic notch.

CNET

When Samsung mocks Apple, does it gnaw at Apple's soul?

I'm thinking about the recent Samsung ad (video below) that claimed the iPhone was always late to the party and never much fun. While the Galaxy range, of course, was the apogee of invention.

Here, you see, are some relevant words from Apple's vice president of iPhone, iPad and iOS product marketing, Greg Joswiak. 

Speaking to Tom's Guide, Joswiak offered, "It doesn't matter if you're first to a general idea, it's about being first to making it fantastic, and that's what we try to do."

To whom could he possibly have been referring, if not Apple's Korean rival?

Joswiak explained the difference between Apple's method and anyone else's like this: "Whether it's the chip team working with our hardware team or our software team with our human interface team -- it is one team here. No one else can match that."

Samsung didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Joswiak insisted that one example of this fantastic was the notch on the iPhone X. This controversial element, one which makes the phone not, as Apple claims, "all screen," has been derided by some as astonishingly ugly.

But Joswiak insisted: "With all of those components, this is one of the most densely packed technology areas I think we've ever done. It's one of the most sophisticated pieces of technology we've ever done in such an incredibly small space."

I confess that when I first handled an iPhone X, I thought the notch wasn't quite as ugly as I'd feared. 

For Joswiak, however, it represents an ambition achieved.

"Forget all those stories you heard about us trying to map fingerprints into the back, we had a line of sight on how to do real facial recognition, in a way never done before. It would be really hard to do, but we just didn't want to do it the way others had, which could literally be spoofed with a picture."

Some say, though, that the FaceID system on the iPhone X can be spoofed by, say, your child.

Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

We each have our own ideas of what's fantastic. Some think Apple's phones too simplistic, with an ecosystem that prevents personalization. Indeed, on my recent visits to various carrier stores, I've often found salespeople telling me they prefer Android phones precisely because they can "do more" with them.

Others believe Apple makes the phones to which everyone should aspire. 

Still, the quest for fantastic is never over. 

Why, imagine the reactions at Apple when Consumer Reports concluded that the iPhone X wasn't quite as good as, oh, the iPhone 8.

Does the Mac still matter? Apple execs explain why the MacBook Pro was over four years in the making, and why we should care.

CNET Magazine: Check out a sample of the stories in CNET's newsstand edition.

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