Physical SIM Cards to go; Apple and Samsung are trying out e-SIM Cards

Almost everyone would be familiar with SIM card, if you have bought any phone manufactured in the last ten years or so. A SIM card is a small chip that fundamentally prescribes everything about your cellular connection including your carrier. The SIM card allows you to use your phone on the carrier’s network.

Many smartphones these days are “locked” to their carrier and won’t accept a SIM from another provider. Even if the provider allows this, you may still have to often pay an substantial fee for a new SIM card, as that information cannot simply be changed. Also, for those who have switched providers may be aware of how difficult the process of switching carriers can be.

However, according to a report from the Financial Times, future Apple and Samsung devices could bid farewell to SIM cards very soon.

According to a report from Forbes, it claims that both companies are currently in talks with GSMA – a trade organization representing global telecom companies – to discuss and introduce electronic SIM cards to all of their devices, starting with the Apple iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy S7. This would mean that there won’t be a physical SIM anymore, but a system instead in which customers can change carriers easily without the need to swap their SIM cards.

If the talks end up being successful, switching providers would be a lot simpler in the future, which would be good news. The GSMA is looking to put the e-SIM policy in place by 2016.

On the flip side, swapping SIM cards is no longer going to be an option for those who travel a lot. Frequent travelers favor phones that are not locked so that they can swap in a local SIM to save on roaming charges. While the e-SIM has a number of advantages, it will mean that devices using the system cannot be swapped, forcing travelers to pay whatever roaming charges their carrier chooses to apply or either buy a new phone and use a different number.

According to Anna Bouverot, the CEO of GSMA excited about the change that is coming said,

“With the majority of operators on board, the plan is to finalise the technical architecture that will be used in the development of an end-to-end remote SIM solution for consumer devices, with delivery anticipated by 2016.”

The idea of creating e-SIM would let handset makers to free up more space in their devices, which could be used to create new functionality and features. According to previous reports by the Inquisitr, Apple might have already begun production on the iPhone 7. If this is true, one would have to wait and watch if it already includes the e-SIM card.

Whatever be the case, one can expect Apple and Samsung phones to come up with phones featuring electronic SIM cards soon.

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