Thoughts on the Dynamic Island name…

Dynamic Island on the new iPhone 14 Pros is one of the best Apple features in years, but we’re pretty torn over that silly marketing name? Hear us out…

Jim Gresham: Efficiency, gained.

I really need to play with Dynamic Island to form a good opinion. At first, it seems pretty dumb. But, I think there are a lot of potential efficiencies gained.

For example, I spend time going through Control Center to access active timers. Or, locking my iPhone to see the timer on my lock screen. Also, the music thumbnail and quick playback controls in Dynamic Island are nice. I like the idea of getting glanceable, timely info up in Dynamic Island while I do other things.

Lyft arrival time, for example—without the need to open the Lyft app.

Sebastien Page: Just don’t call it the notch!

The notch, pictured here, as it once was

In an era where everything leaks weeks, if not months in advance, how delightful it is to be surprised by something none of us saw coming: the Dynamic Island!

Beyond the feature itself, which I believe is a brilliant way of not only embracing but also making the best of an otherwise hardware inconvenience, we can all agree that the name leaves a lot to be desired.

When I heard “Dynamic Island” for the first time on Wednesday, I immediately got flashbacks of “The Island.” You know, the one from the early 2000’s hit TV series LOST. It made me feel uneasy. It still does, because unlike my colleague Anthony for whom “island” is synonymous with paradise, and vacation, for me, it’s synonymous with disaster, and loneliness. I’m weird like that.

I don’t like the name much, but I do love the feature. Could Apple have found a better name? Probably. Should they have just not given it a name, to begin with, like they did with The Notch? Read: Everything to know about lock screen widgets on iPhone

Absolutely not, because if they hadn’t, they would have given carte blanche to users and critics to give it their own name, and we would have ended up with something like, well, The Notch. At least here Apple is in full control of the messaging.

Anthony Bouchard: An engaging feature name

Dynamic Island aka the notch on the iPhone 14 Pros
Dynamic Island is über-cool but maybe call it something else? | Image: Apple

Like many others, I almost couldn’t contain myself when I first came to hear the name Dynamic Island. But when you think about it, Apple needed to give this certain feature of the new iPhone a title that would sound interesting enough to make users want to engage with it, and I think they did a good job of that.

Consider the notch, for example. Apple didn’t name it, and users simply joined one of two different camps. Either they adored it and came to appreciate the additional curves in the display, or they loathed it and wished there wasn’t a ‘bite’ impeding on their display picture.

The name Dynamic Island clearly distinguishes the hole-punch TrueDepth camera system design in the Pro series of the iPhone 14 lineup from the rest of the display because the word “island” lends a sensation of seclusion.

But by adding the word “dynamic”’ Apple captures the feature’s versatility along with our attention in ways we didn’t see with the notch.

I look forward to how Dynamic Island will transform the way I interact with my phone while using different apps.

Michael Billig: Distinctly “Apple”

Male hand holding iPhone 14 Pro Max with its alway-on display completely dark and product packaging visible in the background
Before you know it, Dynamic Island will be on all iPhones | Image: Harris Craycraft / iDB

I was really excited when I first saw Dynamic Island on iPhone 14 Pro.

The last time I was so excited to see a new iPhone feature was in 2015 with 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s. Like 3D Touch did, Dynamic Island opens up an entirely new way to use iPhone and is distinctly “Apple” in terms of its simplicity and fluidity.

Every time Apple comes out with a new feature like this, there seems to be a collective feeling in the tech community of “this is genius, why hasn’t anybody done this before?”

The dynamic island appears to open up an entirely new task switcher of sorts to the iPhone experience, giving you quick access to tasks you currently have running. It makes for a fresh iPhone experience, where Apple embraces the hardware with fun animations bouncing around the pill cutout.

The name, however, is quite a mouthful at 5 syllables, and I honestly don’t think I will ever say “Dynamic Island” in public. This name seems to come straight out of the same playbook Apple used for their “surgical grade stainless steel” on the Pro iPhone models. Name aside, Dynamic Island is one of the best iPhone features in a while, and I haven’t been this excited to get a new iPhone in a very long time.

Now we just need it on the iPad.

Christian Zibreg: Where’s Apple’s crack marketing team?

I think I must be the most annoyed team member when it comes to the Dynamic Island name (hardly surprising, I get annoyed too easily). I remember the feeling of complete disbelief after hearing the phrase “dynamic island” uttered for the first time at Apple’s event.  It didn’t sound to me like a name for a high-tech feature.

This must be a joke, I thought to myself. Why hasn’t Apple put its crack marketing team on this one, I complained. I mean, this famous department has come up with some pretty interesting macOS codenames over the years!

And yet, “dynamic island” is the best these people could do?

I get it, there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Apple certainly got the tongues wagging over this feature. But to me, the name sounds too silly to be taken seriously.

What’s the first mental image that popped into your mind upon first hearing the words “dynamic island?” Exactly! Apple has coined some pretty memorable marketing monikers over the years, but I’m sure I won’t remember “dynamic island” for the right reasons. Read: How to manage the iPhone’s always-on display

Apple calls Dynamic Island a new way to interact with iPhone.

That’s a pretty tall order but the key takeaway is that Apple mentions just “iPhone” instead of the iPhone 14 Pros. In all likelihood, this implies that recent reports about Dynamic Island coming to all the new iPhones in 2014 are probably correct.

This is one feature that’ll soon trickle down to all iPhones. I just feel like it deserves a much cooler name that’s more tech, futuristic and sci-fi than “dynamic island.”