SIM-less Phones? Why hasn't this been introduced?

Hustler1337

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Dec 23, 2010
1,783
1,514
London, UK
Hi guys,

I've just been reading this article on MacRumors and it got me thinking - why hasn't sim-less phones been introduced yet?

If you think about it, there really shouldn't be a need to have a Sim-card on your iPhone or any phone/mobile device by any manufacturer. It should all be digitised and dealt with at an electronic level rather than at a physical level. If you look at Apple and other manufacturers, they've greatly reduced the size the sim-cards their devices take because space is at a premium - the sim-card just gets in the way.

Network providers should only require the device's IMEI and any additional security information and identifiers to verify and authenticate a device and connect to the network by such means.

This should make it much more difficult for thieves to avoid remote tracking by throwing out the sim or transferring the sim to another device and using the inclusive minutes/texts/data etc. And it should also reduce the costs of manufacturing, sending out and transferring numbers to alternate size sims etc.

So yeh, why hasn't sim-less/virtual-sim phones been introduced yet for newer devices? Have I missed something that makes a SIM card absolutely necessary? :|
 

BeeJee

macrumors 6502
Nov 27, 2011
369
2
Long Island/North Jersey
I hated simless phones when I was with Verizon. Always having to call them up to tell them to activate the phone was a pain in the ass. With the sim it makes it nice and easy to go back and forth. Sorry, but I can't agree with you.
 

Phil A.

Moderator
Staff member
Apr 2, 2006
5,542
2,370
Shropshire, UK
a SIM card gives me the flexibility to put my SIM card into any phone and separates the service from the device which has to be a good thing IMO
 

eyoungren

macrumors Core
Aug 31, 2011
22,091
14,810
ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
Hi guys,

I've just been reading this article on MacRumors and it got me thinking - why hasn't sim-less phones been introduced yet?

If you think about it, there really shouldn't be a need to have a Sim-card on your iPhone or any phone/mobile device by any manufacturer. It should all be digitised and dealt with at an electronic level rather than at a physical level. If you look at Apple and other manufacturers, they've greatly reduced the size the sim-cards their devices take because space is at a premium - the sim-card just gets in the way.

Network providers should only require the device's IMEI and any additional security information and identifiers to verify and authenticate a device and connect to the network by such means.

This should make it much more difficult for thieves to avoid remote tracking by throwing out the sim or transferring the sim to another device and using the inclusive minutes/texts/data etc. And it should also reduce the costs of manufacturing, sending out and transferring numbers to alternate size sims etc.

So yeh, why hasn't sim-less/virtual-sim phones been introduced yet for newer devices? Have I missed something that makes a SIM card absolutely necessary? :|
Because not everyone likes being bound to their carrier and forced to get new phones any time they want to switch.

With no SIM you are at the mercy of the carrier.

BTW, you missed SIMless Nirvana if you were not on Sprint prior to 2011. It's only in the last three years that Sprint has been selling more phones with SIMs. The original Sprint iPhone 4 doesn't even have a SIM.
 

Pat too

macrumors member
Oct 24, 2012
79
18
Companies like Apple have been trying to introduce phones with embedded sim cards for some time but pressure from networks has meant the plans were put on hold.

"The operators are privately saying they could refuse to subsidise the iPhone if Apple inserts an embedded subscriber identity module, or Sim card.

The operators are accusing Apple of trying to gain control of their relationship with their mobile customers with the new Sim. The technology could allow customers to buy the iPhone and sign up for service on Apple's website and start using it immediately.

Closer to the operators' hearts, it could allow customers to switch more easily from one to another or insist on shorter-term contracts. It could even set the stage for Apple to resell connection service on its own, although the company has not indicated such plans."


https://www.macrumors.com/2010/11/1...n-iphone-sim-card-even-as-gsma-moves-forward/

I'm a little surprised that the networks are worried that 'it could allow customers to switch more easily from one to another or insist on shorter-term contracts' as the control seems more in their hands since the service is now 'embedded' into the device, the customer has much less potential to quickly terminate or switch to a different service.

Most of us can, in theory, easily switch to a different landline/broadband or utility company if we find a better deal elsewhere. But can it usually be done overnight or 'immediately'? Nope, the admin process will no doubt take 'so many working days'. So, I would not relish the situation where I couldn't change my sim card quickly when travelling abroad or being able to take the sim card from a damaged/malfunctioned phone to put in a spare handset and be up and running in minutes.
 
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