Feeds

Apple proposes even tinier SIMs for future iPhones, iPads

Plans for them to eventually disappear entirely

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Apple has proposed an even tinier SIM format to the European standards body ETSI.

The standard will take a year or two to be agreed, so don't expect super-titchy SIMs immediately or even in the next iPhone. But if adopted it will mean the SIM taking up less space in the phone.

Smaller SIMs would leave more space for other goodies, and size could become irrelevant if Apple were to succeed in its plan for an operator-independent SIM.

Apple's iPad and iPhone 4 both already use micro SIMs, which lose a lot of the plastic from the traditional SIM, but now Reuters tells us the company has proposed an even smaller standard to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute; an essential step if the smaller SIM is going to be acceptable to the GSM standard.

Mobile phones sold in Europe have to conform to the GSM standard, and that standard demands a removable SIM card to allow customers to take phones with them when they change networks. The SIM has been very valuable in driving the popularity of mobile telephony, as well as being the component that ensure the security of the whole network.

SIMs are controlled entirely by the network operator, who holds the cryptographic keys necessary to make changes to the SIM as well as authenticate customers. That's always annoyed Apple, who consider the user to be its customer and would be much happier with some form of iTunes-managed network selection rather than a hardware token beyond its control.

But until that can be pushed through the standards bodies it'll make the SIM as small as possible. The new version is electronically no different from its processors - conforming to ISO7816 and GSM 11.11 with the usual contact pattern and connections (to the relief of those who have the ISO pattern tattooed). The only difference appears to be less plastic, more fiddly to hold but taking up less space inside the case. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?