iPhone 4 antenna issue two years old

John Gruber says problem was known about in early stages of development

Claim suggests problem already existed before departed exec even arrived at Apple.

Antennagate is very much back in the headlines today. After Apple’s iPhone hardware engineering chief left the company over the weekend, a swirl of speculation has started, not just about his departure, but also about the antenna issue itself.

The usually impeccable John Gruber has spoken to a ‘well informed source’ who reckons that the problem itself dates back two years. That means Apple knew of the problems posed by an external antenna well before hardware engineering bod’ Mark Papermaster joined the company in October 2008.

Related links:
- iPhone exec leaves Apple over antennagate
- Antennagate: RIM hit backs at Apple death grip demo
- Apple iPhone 4 antennagate videos pulled from US site

While Gruber says Apple had a chance to fix the issue, the fact it was known about so long ago suggests it had some idea that it would cause consternation among the wider public when it was released in June this year.

It seems in leaving Apple, Papermaster has created a welter of new publicity which Apple could doubtless do without. Tell us your thoughts on the issue on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Via Daring Fireball