Secret Apple factory for Foxconn-made Verizon iPhone 4 or antenna refresh rumored

The Verizon iPhone 4 rumor rears its head once more, with speculation that Apple is using a rented production line separate to their mainstream Foxconn facility to develop alternate versions of the fourth-generation smartphone.  The facility – which is being used while a new $100m production line is built – is currently staffed by over 500 Foxconn employees; Computerworld suggests that a CDMA iPhone 4 could be in development, however there's also the possibility of alternate antenna designs being explored.

Steve Jobs himself confirmed that Apple was exploring other ways to address the iPhone 4's antenna issues at the company's press conference a little over a week ago.  While a full recall is not on the cards, there's been plenty of speculation that Apple is looking to tweak their hardware design alongside the launch of the delayed white iPhone 4.

However, a private, more tightly controlled facility would also allow Apple to work with Foxconn on the next-generation iPhone 4; while the latest model has only been on the market for a relatively short period, it's no secret that development of the handsets stretches into years and Apple is undoubtedly considering the device that will replace it.  Foxconn's record of secrecy has been punctuated by various high-profile leaks together with employee suicides, and this temporary works might be a move to better control access to development information.

[via 9 to 5 Mac]