The difficulty here is that the information that was sought from Farook’s iPhone had not been backed up, so that the government could not conduct a simple search on its own to get it. Instead, it had to attack the encryption systems built into the phone itself.The United States has a vast agency whose only purpose is to attack the encryption systems and communications of other countries and terrorists everywhere. It's called the National Security Agency and if the government feels compelled to crack Apple's encryption, that's who they should turn to, not the Courts and not to Apple.*
Apple, as the article goes on to state, freely complied with turning over all the data that it had on the phone belonging to the California State agency that owned it, but that isn't enough according to the FBI. They want Apple to create an entryway into their own encryption system that the government can then exploit whenever it feels like. I'll bet they don't feel compelled to pay Apple to do the necessary work either.
Still, I suppose if I was running Apple, I'd do just as the State Department does in complying with the Court and put my best Hillary Clinton type Apple software engineer (Smedley Dewlap) to work on developing a hack into the Apply encryption. I'd have to tell the Court that it might take some time before we can get back to them with the results ordered since Smedley thinks 'wiping a computer' involves using a cloth of some kind. I'd also send them the bill. Smedley's don't work cheap and they eat up a lot of other people's resources.
*I'll bet a donut that the NSA already has an entrance to Apple's encryption and I'll bet another donut, Apple quietly sold it to them last year. I'll bet a third donut that Apple's attorneys are already telling the FBI this.