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Apr 12, 2001
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The new iPhone XS, XS Max, and iPhone XR models all come equipped with support for dual-SIM functionality through the inclusion of a standard nano-SIM slot and an eSIM, a feature that has previously been used in iPad models.

According to Apple's website, eSIM functionality will not be available when the new iPhones launch, with the company instead planning to introduce it later this year through an iOS 12 software update.

appleesim-800x557.jpg

Dual-SIM support will allow the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR to support two cellular plans at once. This is useful for people who have two phone numbers for work and personal use and for travel.

Both numbers used with a dual-SIM iPhone can make and receive voice calls and receive SMS and MMS messages, but an iPhone can only use one cellular data network at a time. That means if one number is on a call, a call to the other number will go to voicemail.

There will be a section in the iOS 12 settings to establish a default number and to label both cellular plans that are in use, with Apple outlining these features in a support document. You will be able to easily make and receive calls from both numbers and switch phone numbers for a call.

Not all carriers are going to support eSIM functionality, but in the United States, it will work with Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile devices. Apple has a full list of carriers offering eSIM support on its website.

Dual-SIM functionality will be available in all new iPhone models and it appears to be available in all countries, despite rumors suggesting it could be limited to countries where multiple SIM use is more popular.

eSIMs are not allowed in China, so in this region specifically, Apple is introducing iPhones that support two physical SIMs. Other countries will have devices that support one physical SIM and one eSIM.

Article Link: eSIM in iPhone XS, XS Max and iPhone XR Won't Be Available at Launch, Apple to Activate Later
 

nylon

macrumors 65816
Oct 26, 2004
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792
Fantastic feature for those who work and live in two countries. i.e. US/Canada
 
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mnsportsgeek

macrumors 68030
Feb 24, 2009
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I wish there was a way for them to auto switch between two networks for mobile data. If I lose service on one network, switch to the other network automatically. Like a primary and secondary cellular data option.
 
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thisisnotmyname

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Oct 22, 2014
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Surely it would be more beneficial to customers, and cheaper to produce, the dual SIM card model worldwide.

eSIM makes it easier to change carriers and follow better plan offerings (and prices). You can make a switch any time you want without going to a retail location to do so. Carriers are going to HATE this.
 
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martyjmclean

macrumors 6502a
Jan 24, 2018
693
2,526
Sydney, NSW
eSIM makes it easier to change carriers and follow better plan offerings (and prices). You can make a switch any time you want without going to a retail location to do so. Carriers are going to HATE this.
That’s a good point, but maybe that’s just a problem in America? I have no issue going to a supermarket or servo and picking up a $2 SIM card.
 
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Nunyabinez

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2010
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Provo, UT
Does anyone know if the carriers will still lock you into their network on both SIMs if the phone is not paid for?

I keep an old phone that is paid off, just so I can put a Chinese SIM in when I am in China. I would love to just have one phone, but if I get it on AT&T's Next program, I'm guessing they will still lock the second SIM to only work on their network.
 
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patrickbarnes

macrumors 6502
Sep 24, 2012
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eSIM makes it easier to change carriers and follow better plan offerings (and prices). You can make a switch any time you want without going to a retail location to do so. Carriers are going to HATE this.

How is this easier than popping in a different SIM?
[doublepost=1536788523][/doublepost]
Does anyone know if the carriers will still lock you into their network on both SIMs if the phone is not paid for?

I keep an old phone that is paid off, just so I can put a Chinese SIM in when I am in China. I would love to just have one phone, but if I get it on AT&T's Next program, I'm guessing they will still lock the second SIM to only work on their network.

Presumably the second slot is unlocked since that’s the entire point of the feature. Presumably. :)
 
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MhzDoesMatter

macrumors regular
Jul 1, 2002
175
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Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Surely it would be more beneficial to customers, and cheaper to produce, the dual SIM card model worldwide.

Ultimately, Apple only wants eSims so as not to have to accommodate the SIM tray and mechanism. So, dual sim cards is heading in the wrong direction.

How is this easier than popping in a different SIM?

Not having to deal with a SIM at all is infinitely "easier than popping in a different SIM," technically speaking.
 
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itsmilo

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Sep 15, 2016
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Berlin, Germany
i doubt any carrier in Germany will support this. Its a shame really. I would have loved to be able to insert a data only sim (cheaper) and another low budget sim for calls
 
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Cdp86

macrumors newbie
Sep 12, 2018
1
0
It would be incredible if WhatsApp would allow two phone number accounts active in the app simultaneously.

Think there’s a chance?

My gf has a Samsung and it’s preload with an Samsung native app allowing 2 WhatsApp. I really doubt Apple will propose it one day.. :/
 
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IG88

macrumors 6502a
Nov 4, 2016
816
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eSIM makes it easier to change carriers and follow better plan offerings (and prices). You can make a switch any time you want without going to a retail location to do so. Carriers are going to HATE this.

Wow this is surprising:

Not all carriers are going to support eSIM functionality, but in the United States, it will work with Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile devices.
 
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palmerc2

macrumors 68000
Feb 29, 2008
1,621
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Los Angeles
My gf has a Samsung and it’s preload with an Samsung native app allowing 2 WhatsApp. I really doubt Apple will propose it one day.. :/

It would be excellent to be able to download two versions of WhatsApp. Guess we’ll have to see.....
 
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profets

macrumors 601
Mar 18, 2009
4,744
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This is the beginning of the end of the physical SIM card. Figured for a while now it would eventually happen that one day we see an iPhone with no SIM card tray. Probably good few years away though. Really need all carriers on board.

The Watch is the best example of this and with it you can see which carriers will be open to supporting it.

I know people mention about swapping physical SIMs, but the goal with eSIM (for travel anyway) would being able to start choosing cellular networks the way we choose WiFi networks. One has better coverage in a certain location? Switch to it.
 
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just.jon

macrumors member
Jan 26, 2017
39
83
Why do I feel like dual SIM capability is going be AirPower Part II? Announced today, for release at a later date...well you know the rest.
 
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Wags

macrumors 65816
Mar 5, 2006
1,459
995
Nebraska, USA
eSIM makes it easier to change carriers and follow better plan offerings (and prices). You can make a switch any time you want without going to a retail location to do so. Carriers are going to HATE this.
Not necessarily. From Apple’s website.
Use of eSIM requires a wireless service plan (which may include restrictions on switching service providers and roaming, even after contract expiration).
Some are saying ATT is locking eSIM on iPad and refusing to unlock. You still have other sim but lose duel capability.
 
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tdar

macrumors 65816
Jun 23, 2003
1,402
992
Alpharetta GA.
Does anyone know if the carriers will still lock you into their network on both SIMs if the phone is not paid for?

I keep an old phone that is paid off, just so I can put a Chinese SIM in when I am in China. I would love to just have one phone, but if I get it on AT&T's Next program, I'm guessing they will still lock the second SIM to only work on their network.
Apple's support document notes that if you want to use two different carriers that the iPhone must be unlocked. So if for example you are on ATT Next (as I am) and want to add a Verizon sim, it's not going to work. Also you can only use 1 CDMA carrier so no Verizon and Sprint.
 
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OldSchoolMacGuy

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Jul 10, 2008
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I have a business SIM card that work pays for on Verizon. It'd be nice to set that as a back up network.

And you can. It just won't automatically switch over (unless they push a software update in the future).

You will be able to say, "Use this one for calls and this one for LTE." That way when you're in another country you can still get calls, but when surfing or using data, it can go through a local provider instead with a prepaid SIM and cheaper rates.
 
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