Someone's Leaking Apple's iPhone Bickering

Apple CEO Steve Jobs is famously ruthless about leaks of any sort. Which is why it's so surprising Bloomberg got so much information about internal Apple bickering over the now infamous iPhone antenna. Apple's wall of secrecy is eroding fast.

As we've written previously, Apple's attempts to tightly control information about its internal plans and discussions have been steadily undermined by the proliferation of mobile devices and increasingly ubiquitous access to social networking and Web publishing platforms. wThis more open environment seems to be loosening some lips inside Apple: Bloomberg is not only reporting that Jobs was warned about the iPhone's antenna months ago, but the financial newswire also names the specific Apple engineer, Ruben Caballero, who supposedly told the CEO about the problem:

Apple's industrial design team, led by Jonathan Ive, submitted several iPhone designs before Jobs and other executives settled on the bezel antenna, said the person familiar with the company's design. Caballero, the antenna expert, voiced concern in early planning meetings that it might lead to dropped calls and presented a serious engineering challenge, the person said.

That's pretty specific inside knowledge, going even beyond the tales of broad conflict between Apple's engineering and design teams our colleagues at Gizmodo have surfaced. And Bloomberg also says an unnamed wireless carrier raised concerns with Apple about phone reception. It's hard to imagine this leak coming from anywhere but inside the company, although it's possible it was passed to a well-placed third party who took the information to Bloomberg. Either way, those are pretty loose lips by historic Apple standards.

So now in addition to having to reverse all the negative PR about the iPhone at a press event Friday, Jobs and his PR team will have to hunt down whoever violated the company's strict code of Omertà. Jobs is, after all, the guy who fired an Apple engineer for showing a prototype iPad to the other co-founder of Apple, current Apple employee Steve Wozniak. His fury has surely been building all week, and we would not want to be the staffer who takes the blame for this latest embarrassment.

[Photo via Getty]