Doing an upgrade swap.. will the nano sim cause an issue?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by NYY FaN, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. NYY FaN macrumors 6502

    NYY FaN

    Jun 22, 2009
    New York
    So I will be upgrading another line on my family plan on AT&T.. this 2nd line actually doesn't have a data plan and want to keep it that way. Since the new iphone has a different sim card than my 4S, I can't simply do a sim card swap.

    Does anyone know what needs to be done to get the iphone 5 on my line once I get it? Is it possible to call up AT&T to have them assign the nano sim in the new phone to my number? or is that nano sim stuck on the 2nd line?
  2. jasonycurtis macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2009
    That card, if like all others, will be for that phone number only. You will have to go directly to an ATT store without putting the card in the phone and have them assign you a new one for your number. Then activate the other with a new card as well. I had to do this last year on a swap and will be doing it again this year. Once a SIM has been associated with a number its permanent.
  3. aloecool macrumors 6502

    Mar 30, 2011
    I'm in a similar situation - planning on adding a new line to the family plan to get the 5, and then giving the new line/# to my mom to use with my current 4s, and using the new 5 with my current line/#. Would ordering the new line & phone and then taking both phones in to an AT&T store to activate it be the best thing to do?
  4. black743 macrumors 6502

    Dec 27, 2010
    Huntington, WV
    But remember, this iphone takes a new kind of sim. I hope the stores have plenty for those of us doing this. I will be upset if I walk into Verizon and have to wait before I can do anything with the new phone I just bought.
  5. ScottJBelanger macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2012
    but will you be charged extra?

    I'm doing the same exact thing but im worried that the line without the data plan that i will use for the upgrade will be charged with a new data plan when i dont want another line with data. I'm thinking that maybe i would only be charged with a new plan if i activated it on the dumb-phone line rather than my own line.
  6. Kadman macrumors 65816


    Sep 22, 2007
    The way they ship them (all phones, not just iPhones) the SIMs aren't actually activated. What happens is that when you turn on the phone and call in to activate (or online process if that's the case) The system reaches out to the IMEI of the phone they know they sent you and marries that SIM to the line being activated. We've done this a lot at work so that we can keep a stash of virgin SIMS so that when we need one, we don't have to go to the AT&T store and pay for them.

    That's an important distinction because I've done numerous times over the year, both with iPhones as well as with phones prior to the iPhone's existence. If you get a hold of someone who knows what their doing, they can activate the line (note not the phone, I mean the line that was upgrade eligible) against the old SIM that line had, then you can put in the new "virgin" SIM into the new phone, let them know your number (i.e. the line that wasn't eligible) and they can register that SIM to your number.

    I know one year, the activation via iTunes absolutely wouldn't let it happen and I had to grab a spare SIM I had from a previous activation where I used my existing SIM and had one as a safety net.

    I have to do an upgrade swap this year, using my wife's line for the eligible upgrade. I hope I get a person who knows what their doing when I call it in!
  7. NYY FaN thread starter macrumors 6502

    NYY FaN

    Jun 22, 2009
    New York
    I called up AT&T customer service just before, and the guy said what you just mentioned. I can call them up or go to an AT&T store and have them put my line onto the new nano sim card.. since the sim doesn't have the 2nd phone number on it when it ships. I hope this is the case since that will make things much simpler... as long as I get someone that knows what the hell is going on.

    I also asked about ordering the iphone on a line that doesn't currently have a data plan, and canceling the data plan once i receive the phone and activate it on my own line. He wasn't very clear but made it seem like he couldn't guarantee that they would just cancel the data and i may have to put a pay as you go data plan on my other line. Then again, this might just be AT&T wanting me to keep a data plan on the other line.

    So much unclear information, I have a feeling something will go wrong.
  8. randy98mtu macrumors 65816


    Mar 4, 2009
    This is exactly what I'm going to try to do. It's going to be extra torture knowing when I get home I can't just turn on the phone. But I'll just take it to a store and have them transfer the sim. I want to make sure the "donor" line doesn't get messed up, as they won't be with me. THanks for the information here.
  9. Kadman macrumors 65816


    Sep 22, 2007

    On that last point, I just mentioned this in another thread. I've done this before and the agent working the swap told me that the data plan wouldn't show up at all on the other line. He was right I got my bill and the other line (my wife's) didn't even show a fraction of a months data. It's like it never even took place. Not sure if that's still the case, but that's how it worked a few years ago (I think it was the 3GS year). Yes, I've had every generation - it's an illness!
  10. tys macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2008
    On a semi related note:
    I don't want the iPhone 5, but I have two lines eligible for upgrades.
    I'm thinking about ordering one and reselling it. (I know, I'm a greedy capitalist pig ;-)
    Ideally, I'd like to keep it "new in the sealed box" but from what I'm reading here, it sounds like the SIM will be already associated to my account. So, should I remove the iPhone 5's SIM before selling?
  11. LiveFreeDie macrumors regular

    Aug 19, 2010
    I'm also planning on using an upgrade on a line in my family plan that does not have data plan. And I am also concerned about having to add a data plan to that line then trying to cancel it. I remember last year for the 4S online pre-order you had to pick a data plan to upgrade.

    I might have to bite the bullet and goto the at&t store on launch day to try to avoid this issue. I'l make a few calls tomorrow at at&t and see what they say.
  12. dave006 Contributor


    Jul 3, 2008
    Just West of East
    Very easy to get this changed. First the details will vary depending on where you ordered the iPhone 5 based on previous years. Yes really!

    Apple and AT&T handle the upgrade orders differently. So you just need to check back here on MacRumors before you try to activate for the latest details.

    Just make sure the donor line and upgrade donor understand that in a worst case, they may need a new SIM and have their voicemail reset during the Upgrade Swap process. It happens every year. :eek:



    Yes again this year you will be force to select a valid data plan for the iPhone to complete the pre-order steps. However, it is not a big issue since it is a feature and even if a rep or you make a mistake during the Upgrade Swap. Once you provide the IMEI for the donor line and it is not an iPhone or Smartphone then the data plan can be removed. Again, this is a worst case example. In most swaps, nothing changes for the upgrade donor line other then being the proud owner of a new two year service commitment! :(


Share This Page