It's hard when people don't talk about you.
It's possibly worse when they used to talk about you and don't talk about you quite as much these days.
That, perhaps, is pain being endured by Samsung currently.
In recent times, the company's new phones have seemed competent. Good, even. Nothing about them, however, has reeked of the spectacular.
Meanwhile, Apple seems to be swallowing attention whole. Whether it's because of its allegedly predatory practices, its championing of privacy, its new chips or its new phones with refreshingly pretty colors.
How else, then, could Samsung express itself but to emit ads that scoff at Apple.
"What is there to scoff at?", I hear you mutter. Well, apparently the iPhone 12 Pro Max has a truly terrible, awful, miserable, dreadful camera.
And there you were thinking that Cupertino had really lifted its photographic capabilities. Oh, no, says Samsung. Just try to take a photo of a grilled cheese sandwich.
Specifically, take a shot with your iPhone 12 Pro Max and you'll miss so many visual nuances of the sandwich you're about to enjoy.
It'll look ineffably dull, as if it has lingered on a Subway counter for several hours. You'll look at your picture and feel undigested shame.
But if you take the same image with a Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G, you'll become intimate with every molecule of that sandwich's being.
The details will be, according to Samsung, "epic." Your eyes will salivate before your mouth. You may not want to eat your sandwich, preferring instead to place it in a piece of glass Tupperware and donate it to a museum.
Please, oh iPhone 12 Pro Max owner, your shame doesn't end there. With the Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G you can zoom to the moon.
Not quite literally, but almost. The 100x zoom capability makes the iPhone 12 Pro Max look like, well, a grilled cheese sandwich placed next to a Gordon Ramsay $106 burger.
So now we are to believe that iPhones have really bad cameras. But do you realize how bad? Why, Samsung's third ad says the Galaxy S21 Ultra captures pictures with a single take.
Your upgrade shouldn't be a downgrade, insists Samsung. Who can possibly argue with that?
I worry, though, that the upgrade cycle may not involve so many people switching sides, as it were. Perhaps more disturbing too, is recent research suggesting that, of those who are prepared to switch, more are going away from Android toward Apple than vice-versa.
Does this Apple-snorting really work? Maybe for a few. Although it does, perhaps, suggest a certain inferiority complex.
Oddly, though, Samsung also just released another ad that dramatizes its camera far better, without bothering to denigrate another brand.
Here is the impossibly attractive Korean band BTS showing off one of the S21 Ultra's excellent camera features. Yes, you can shoot video and take still pictures from it later. And be impossibly attractive.
No, it won't get me instantly switching to the Galaxy S21 Ultra.
But it's a lot more interesting -- epic, even -- than wondering how detailed I can make my grilled cheese sandwich picture.