General Question

Alina1235's avatar

what exactly is a sim card.

Asked by Alina1235 (373points) March 5th, 2008 from iPhone

sorry if its a repeat question, but I looked at apple website and googles it and I just can’t find an explanation for dummies LOL. I’m not even sure how to take it out and the purpose of it. Is it like a memory card?thanks in advance

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4 Answers

Riser's avatar

in a sense a SIM card is a memory card with digital information that allows your carrier to keep tabs on you.

Sim cards can send information like usage and exactly what type phone you are on. There are several reasons for this – ie you complain to your provider that you have been charged for calls that you claim you didn’t make, you come to find they were pocket calls made by your hyper sensitive Palm Treo. You complain to your provider, they check your account revealing you were on a Palm Treo at the time of the phone calls in question, however this particular provider doesn’t carry or authorize the Palm Treo which means you unlocked it to work with your sim card, that little card just saved the company from having to eat your costs.

Longer story shorter- those little bastards aren’t intended to help you. They are only to keep tabs on you but you have no choice so enjoy.

P.S. The iPhone does not have a SIM card and if you were already an at&t customer efore you switched to iphone you’ll observe that your sim card has been deactivated.

Riser's avatar

I will say the general public’s need for SIM cards is that if you save your phone numbers to your card you can transfer that card to a new phone and your numbers are on the card ready to be used in the new phone, but with the advent of smart phones and computer syncing the SIM card is quickly becoming a relic.

Alina1235's avatar

Thank you so much Riser – you are full of valuable information! I really enjoy reading your posts. As I understand, only AT&T supports iphones right now if I’m correct, so I won’t even mess with the sim card then. I just thought it was like a memory card when the kids useto share cell phones and just pop out their memory cards from the back of the phones and swipe cell phones.
Thank you!

squirbel's avatar

Actially, the iPhone does have a SIM card.

Look at the top of the phone between the headset jack and the power button. That invisiline slot with the hole is where it is stored.

Should you show an interest in removing the card, search google for “iPhone remove SIM” and you will find howtos as well as videos. It is part of the procedure in switching the iPhone to another carrier.

SIM cards were created to increase mobility between carriers. In the old days cell phones were built with a crystal inside that was locked to one carrier. When you switched to another carrier, you had to buy a new phone, no questions asked.

SIM cards enabled the customer to buy a device, and keep it even if they switched carriers. The process was as simple as calling in to deactivate your old SIM and ordering a new one from the new company and sticking it in your phone.

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