iPhone maker Apple is faced with more controversy after it was announced that senior vice-president of devices hardware engineering, Mark Papermaster, is leaving the company.
Apple has not explained why Mr Papermaster has left his post, but industry watchers are speculating that his exit coincides too neatly with the persisting iPhone 4 antenna issues for it to be a coincidence.
An Apple spokesperson told the New York Times: “Mark Papermaster is leaving the company and Bob Mansfield, senior vice-president of Macintosh hardware engineering, is assuming his responsibilities."
The launch of the iPhone 4 in June was heralded as one of Apple's most successful ever and over three million units have already shipped worldwide.
However, the consumer interest soon turned to distrust after it emerged that holding the smartphone in a way that covered the lower left portion of the external antenna, would result in dropped calls.
Apple founder Steve Jobs admitted at a press conference last month that the firm was aware of the issue and working on a fix. iPhone 4 owners are being offered a free bumper case to alleviate the problem in the short term.
Mr Papermaster has not been in contact with the media since his departure, leading some to calling it a dismissal.