"None of which explains why Apple would choose an unexploited standard for the iPad. "
It's Apple - so it MUST be right...
O2, Orange and DoCoMo are all apparently stocking up on micro SIMs suitable for Apple's iPad, though taking a sharp knife to an existing SIM is always an option. Quite why Apple decided to use the third form factor for the iPad's 3G module isn't clear, but anyone planning to stuff an existing SIM into an iPad will need to be …
No phone features, so what's the use in a name/number pair?
name/e-mail with optional number on the other hand DOES make sense on the iPad.
Nothing wrong with a standard address book, but having a sim that can only store phone numbers in a device that can't ring people would be odd when there's alternatives available.
Especially the part where it says the application that allows you to store name/e-mail and numbers together runs on either micro or mini-SIM.
A mini SIM is already too easy to lose. The micro-SIM is going to be ridiculous. Don't understand the design choice at all - unless Apple want the slot to be so small you can't see it?
I imagine there are much easier ways of sharing email addresses. iTunes does it just fine for example. That and I can't see a reason for wanting to transfer anything. For any "smart" device, using a SIM card to transfer numbers is completely superfluous.
I'm only slightly amazed that Apple still allow a removable SIM...
The iPad is so small it nee....
Hold on that's not right is it. The iPad is HUGE cf+ modern phones, so it could easily take the cc sized model, although they're basically obsolete nowadays.
The "normal" SIM size doesn't seem excessive, but I can't recall if they found space for an SD card either?
If the iPad used a normal SIM, you could take the SIM out of your phone and use it for a bit of iPad web surfing. For very occasional 3G usage, that saves the cost of two subscriptions or the hassle of a second PAYG SIM.
But no... once you cut down your SIM to fit the iPad you won't be able to get it back in your phone.
"Perhaps Apple is offering operators an opportunity to differentiate between computers and phones on their networks - computers, and dongles, could use Micro SIMs (sold with broadband data-only tariffs) while phones will use existing SIMs with unlimited data, and those of us in possession of a sharp knife can enjoy the best of both worlds."
Probably not, unless Micro => Mini adapters become a wide spread option. They might already be, but I haven't heard of them (no demand?).
Personally, I would think there would be more sense to having the computers using the credit card format - especially if the GSM module is integrated into the computer. While it may be a non-starter for USB dongles, it could work out well to have the USB allow the card to have just the edge slipped in, and the rest of the card integrating a GSM antenna... But if everyone could connect, the network would have to upgraded to support all that traffic at once, wouldn't it?
And THAT won't happen anytime soon... Now, off to patent the idea of the credit card format integrating its own GSM antenna... :)
What you;re basically saying is that a carrier can't tell the difference between a phone and a tablet if you swap a SIM. That is WRONG. In fact, they can actually tell the difference between your smartphone and the machine tethered to it using that same connection...
Basically, any access to the web included in the packet header information about the device making the request. Somewhere in there, the carrier will EASILY be able to discern between iPad and some random other device, if nothing more than to look at the MAC address of the device making IP requests.
This would make it appear "ok" in the eyes of a consumer. If they straight up denied access based on the IMEI connecting to the network then the customer would see that as "greedy". However if there was a different SIM size then they would actually be forced to buy an additional data plan- but they wouldn't think that it was unjustified as having to have seperate plans.
Also they network could know what device you have by checking the IMEI number when the device conncects to the network basestation.
On a side note; we can't have these phones with NOSIM in the UK- that would be horrible (but I think thats CDMA?)
Apple - Just another example of consumer milking
How soon do you think it will be before someone starts selling some sort of adapter sleeve thingy that will allow a microSIM to fit properly in a full sized SIM slot?
This is MY idea and if used I must be credited to me, so there! Though a check would be nice too ...
Tux just because I hate MS
You cant take your sim out of your iphone and stick it in your ipad, if you want 3g on your ipad and you already have an iphone then you need a second contract.
The problem with drinking the Apple Kool-aid is not only do they charge you for it, they also charge you for the cup and someone to pour it for you
Maybe - just maybe - this will be the size format of the SIM required for the next generation of iPhone - setting a president with this device enables providers to get stocks in and then a smaller sim could equal a smaller 4th Gen iPhone or, its to make more room for - i dont know, say, a longer life battery?
"No phone features, so what's the use in a name/number pair? name/e-mail with optional number on the other hand DOES make sense on the iPad."
"In fact, both of these capabilities are part of the USIM application, which can be installed on a SIM of any size or shape as part of the 3G standard."
Did you even read the article before commenting?
...that let you use micro SIM cards in normal and mini SIM devices, and they are cheap bits of plastic usually as part of a dual SIM solution. Sounds like a 3rd party opportunity rather than a real 'problem'.
Still, it would be remiss to pass on a chance to whinge about Apple's new creation ;-)
One possibility is that the choice of a micro-SIM wasn't Apple's decision as such, but a condition imposed by AT&T - who will be offering cheap unlimited data plans for iPad users.
Presumably Apple's reluctance to allow tethering and VoIP applications is driven by the need not to annoy the network operators ...
"Apple has been saying the Micro SIM will also support a more-comprehensive phone book as well as greater security."
In other words, the tech is there and compatible with the SIM today, but NO ONE uses it, so Apple, in their ability to F* with the market as they do, are essentially mandating support for these better security standards and better phone book model and enforcing operators to move to more secure and more user customizable systems if they want to make millions hocking Apple's to-die-for products.
All that extra functionality just from cutting the plastic edges off? Thanks for the explanation, the world got rather surreal there for a moment and I was wondering which things that I own would benefit from having a fews bits filed off.
The answer's got to be, as others have suggested, to prevent data plan "sharing" between devices. I can't think of any other reason why a larger device would need a smaller SIM apart from sheer bloody-mindedness on the part of its makers.
Easy. Well, easyish.
Take a look at the illustration in the article. Many PAYG SIMs come as a 'credit card' and you snap the SIM out. Take that 'credit card' and cut a normal SIM sized piece out of it. Cut a hole the size of a micro-SIM in that.
Tada! A convenient micro to normal size wrapper / adapter. It's even easier if cutting a standard SIM down to size - the bit cut off is the wrapper / adapter. Not something you want to use if regularly swapping from one thing to another but it works.
Paris : Who knows about filling holes.
There are lot's of reasons for this sort of thing ...
"I had one on my desk when we mocked it up"
"I designed for the larger SIM but needed some extra space"
"We did the drawings in imperial units but the fab house used metric"
"I lost the spec sheet for the other ones but had a spec sheet for this one"
"Steve told me to do it"
"We had samples of both types but lost the larger ones - oh wait, there they are"
etc etc - trust me on this, I've seen them all over the years.
To prevent people from swapping in SIMs with unlimited data plans? Seems like a very unlikely explanation to me - if a full-size SIM can be cut down to a micro SIM, then presumably some enterprising company will quickly make a little 'bracket' that will hold a micro SIM and make it fit a full-size SIM socket again.
I think it's because Apple wants to use a micro SIM in the next iPhone, where the extra space made available will be a real advantage. Putting a micro SIM slot in the iPad now ensures there's a ready supply on the market before they introduce the next iPhone.
People said the same thing when Apple introduced USB (developed by intel) on the original iMac's, which were PPC machines. Apple adopt things because they are a good idea, before the iMac used USB and demanded that all peripherals use USB connections there were no USB peripherals. As soon as the iMac was launched with the only method of giving it additional functionality being USB, there was suddenly a flood of peripherals. About 6 months later the PC world suddenly decided it might be good to actually use these things and build some kind of driver in windows to support these plug and play devices. The same thing happened with Firewire (IEEE1394), which was actually a Sony technology to start with (they branded it i.Link), Macs originally used firewire for storage and DV Camera connections, on PC's you had to buy a card to get the connectivity.
Apple as a technology company likes things to be neat and elegant, if they can make something smaller they will, expect the next iPhone to also use the MicroSIM, as it will provide more space for the battery or other components in that form factor.
That's easy to answer: one can unlock a mobile phone using a TurboSIM card, which is the size of a MiniSIM card. And there's no TurboSIM for MicroSIMs as far as I know.
So baseband processor is locked tighter, no TurboSIM exists for MicroSIMs and there's a win for the operator.
just like Bluetooth is going 3.0, just like miniUSB is becoming microUSB, just like miniSD card is reduced to microSD cards, microSIM is becoming the new standard.
Think about it: the SIM card has not changed over... a decade or so! And as handset vendor are struggling to make their ware thinner and smaller, SIM card size is becoming an issue.
It looks like Apple is taking the lead and will push for the transition... expect plenty of phone, notebooks, smartbooks, tablets... to come with micro SIM in the near future.
What ... hasn't changed in a decade so it needs to? Apple need to save space in a device 4 times the size of the iPhone so they need a smaller SIM? Really ... grasping at straws!. I'd go with lock-in and 'becasue they can' ... and also once the operators have splashed out on something that is probably more expensive per unit, they become tied to Apple's fate i.e. forces them to invest to sell the device.
The reason is more likely to be something quite prosaic. I design Printed Circuit Boards and assemblies for a living. In my view the small SIM card holder may well have been a cheaper part, and take up less space on the PCB. So for the hardware engineer a win win situation. For the end consumer a slightly cheaper product and a minor inconvenience.
And it comes *as standard* with improved features over mini-SIM.
The iPad may be a very chunky iPod Touch / iPhone (depending on which model you buy), but it's still got a lot of stuff inside the case. Given the battery life it's boasting with its 9.7" screen, it's probably fair to assume Apple's engineers felt squeezing as much room for the battery as possible into the design was more important than whether the bloody SIM card was the same size as the one in a Nokia 97 Mini.
MicroSIM is the smallest size currently available. It supports additional address book features, better security and a few other API enhancements *out of the box*. Apple have a track record of popularising new interfaces and technologies. They did it with USB, with Firewire, with multitouch... and they were (in)famously the first computer manufacturer to drop the 3.5" floppy drive.
Why is this even news?
Well, in a way I guess they did. Apple started charging extorionate licence fees for Firewire which PC manufacturers (and Intel) didn't have the appetite for, which brought USB into play. Intel provided them royalty-free (still do), which ultimately saw Firewire being dropped by Apple very very gradually.
I've got no doubt the iPodPadTouch would still support charging and syncing over Firewire if it weren't for that faux-pas. But please don't think that just because a connector exists on an Apple product, that they "popularised" it.
Apple popularised USB by being the first PC manufacturer to fit USB sockets and nothing else on the first iMac. Without a row of legacy sockets along the back peripheral manufacturers had to create USB mice and printers if they wanted to work with them, until then they didn't bother as every PC had serial and parallel sockets on them. It was also the first computer to drop the floppy drive, thus leading to the first USB external floppy drives so we could copy anything onto them.
As for the Firewire licence fee, I suppose it depends on whether you consider 25 cents per appliance extortionate. I'm not so sure that extra 25 cents is why a firewire external hard drive costs considerably more than a USB one though.
MicroSIM is the smallest size currently available.
It supports additional address book features, better security and a few other API enhancements *out of the box*.
Wrong. The article explicitly states that these are part of the USIM standard that is not restricted to microSIM.
Apple has been saying the Micro SIM will also support a more-comprehensive phone book as well as greater security. In fact, both of these capabilities are part of the USIM application, which can be installed on a SIM of any size or shape as part of the 3G standard.
..."out of the box" did you not understand?
Yes, mini-SIMs *can* support the added features, but this isn't a *requirement* for them.
MicroSIM cards, on the other hand, *are* required to have these features included *as standard*. It's part of their specification. Along with the added security stuff—which, given all the criticism Apple gets whenever a bug is found in their software, is probably reason enough for going with it.
That the new features are implemented entirely in software is utterly f*cking irrelevant: the point is that they are *required* if you're using a micro-SIM for it to be considered compatible with the specs.
Seriously, check out ETSI.org and get your data from a primary, rather than a secondary (or maybe even tertiary) source. Journalists are fallible human beings too, y'know.
So if the USIM standard is required of microSIM, but is only optional on miniSIM, and this is stated on the ETSI.org site, why does the term microSIM not return any results on that site's general or standards searches ?
Now I may just not be putting in the right search term to get the info, but if you want to claim this is a requirement, provide a direct link on the info ETSI.org site to show this is the case.
And even if USIM standards are only optional for miniSIM then it still doesn't mean a microSIM is required for a device to require USIM, it just needs to reject any SIM that isn't USIM compatible. As USIM is needed for 3G, the miniSIMs used for 3G will be USIM compatible, microSIM therefore is not essential.
The etsi.org seems to prefer a space between the mini or micro and sim.
Is the U in USIM supposed to stand for micro, a la greek lettering conventions?
Aside from that, it appears that features are not a function of form factor.
The three different sizes seem to mean nothing more than how much plastic is wrapped around the working bits and contacts.
"MicroSIM is the smallest size currently available. It supports additional address book features, better security and a few other API enhancements *out of the box*"
So, you didn't read the part about the "new features" being available on USIM chips, micro or not? IIRC, the only difference between "mini" and "micro" is the excess plastic surrounding the actual chip, hence the ability to "hack" a normal USIM card into a "microSIM" slot. You're just cutting the useless plastic.
"Apple have a track record of popularising new interfaces and technologies. They did it with USB, with Firewire, with multitouch... and they were (in)famously the first computer manufacturer to drop the 3.5" floppy drive."
... and they were also the first ones in using SCSI as a HDD standard, first to jump into RISC/PowerPC, first in using 3.5" floppies instead of the 5.25" with the Macintosh ... all of these improvements were lost in favor of cheap crap by switching to IDE and x86.
I doubt USB was made popular by Mac, Firewire was better but it didn't quite take off, and dropping the 3.5" floppy *when they did it* was kind of stupid, as pendrives weren't that popular back then.
yes - I was looking at dual-sim adapters* a couple of days ago - most of them also come with two adapters so you can use your cut-down sims in normal phones.
*Didn't get one tho' - a dual sim phone (with both full size sims active) was about the same price as the adapter (Chinese natch!)
Has anyone tried using a cut-down mini-SIM in the micro-SIM slot in an iPad? I wouldn't put it past Apple to put something in there to detect that and disable the 3G.
Like the reverse of what Three did to stop their SIMs being used in 2G phones - they put an application on the SIM that detects the lack of a 3G radio and turns the SIM off. The iPad could detect the lack of (something) on the SIM and disable cellular data.
The reason is simple. It's smaller/different because at&t and others want to charge for each device you connect to the network. Why else would they frown so heavily on a Jesus phone tethering app. Apple can accommodate this by requiring a different SIM in the iPad and iPhone. I don't see most appletards using a sharp knife or a hole punch to alter their existing SIMs. That would defile the purity of the Jesus phone, now wouldn't it? No better to pay a separate fee to connect the Jesus netbook and Jesus phone simultaneously, even though that makes at&t's you can't surf and talk without two devices on Verizon ads moot. Oh well, I'll abandon this simple reason for the smaller SIM if apple incorporates microSIM into the very next Jesus phone release.
It's all about the network revenue.
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