England scored four tries in Dublin at a stadium where they previously had not managed one in eight years.
And the defeat would have looked even worse for Ireland if not for John Cooney’s late consolation that kept them off the foot of the table.
After a Grand Slam last year, Schmidt found few positives in the first home Championship defeat of his tenure.
“It’s really disappointing, not too dissimilar to the All Blacks here a couple of years ago when we got beaten up and we got beaten up again today,” he said.
“We have to believe and go to Scotland who now share the Championship lead and we need to be more cohesive and abrasive.
“I don’t think tonight was anything other than two really big teams, one winning fine margins and the other not. They have enormous power and we struggle to contain their power runners.
“They put pressure on, defensively got off the line. They got a second try in behind us but we need to keep a cool head. We have young players and struggling for cohesion.
“We got man-handled a little bit, it was very hard to generate momentum. We over-played because we couldn’t get into the aerial battle. They got access into our aerial battle.”
England coped well with Ireland’s traditional aerial bombardment, Jonny May, Elliot Daly and Jack Nowell shining in the back three.
And Ben Youngs and Owen Farrell’s own kicking game pinned the Irish team back, with Robbie Henshaw given a serious examination at full-back.
That left Schmidt frustrated at the result, and particularly allowing England to earn a bonus point as Ireland chase the game.
He added: “We never hit the ground running, even last year. We have had success in Europe, we had some tired bodies in our training week and we tend to get better in the Championship as it continues.
“We were chasing the game in the last quarter and there are regrets about losing the bonus point.”