SIM card trays may disappear from iPhone 15 in Europe

Posted:
in iPhone
Apple may expand its removal of physical SIM card trays, with European iPhones possibly the next to lose the legacy technological element in the iPhone 15.

A SIM tray
A SIM tray


The introduction of the iPhone 14 forced millions of US iPhone users into using eSIMs instead of a physical SIM card. In a probable expansion of that design decision, Apple may make the same change for units bound for Europe.

According to sources of iGeneration, Apple stands to make the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro eSIM-only devices when they go on sale in France. Since Apple doesn't make a France-specific variant of the iPhone, such a design decision could instead apply to more countries across Europe.

Moving to eSIM only will provide Apple with some benefits, including possibly regaining internal space for other components, for example. There are potential waterproofing benefits as well.

This is not the first time the SIM tray removal rumor has surfaced. A rumor from December insisted that only eSIMs would be supported for more models.

However, it's likely that Apple will still offer iPhones with physical SIM capacity for a while longer. In China, rather than eSIM support, iPhones sold in the country have trays capable of holding two SIMs.

Read on AppleInsider
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    JP234JP234 Posts: 1,433member
    I sure won't miss it if Apple removes it. Hope phones stores learn how to deal with it.
  • Reply 2 of 24
    When I got my iPhone 14 Pro, I visited my nearest o2 store to get an e-sim only to be told that they have “run out” of e-sims. 

    How do you run out of a digital service?

    If they had supported transferring e-sims from my old phone to my new phone I wouldn’t have been in this situation…

    This is going to happen to me every time I get a new iPhone. 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 3 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,748member
    When I got my iPhone 14 Pro, I visited my nearest o2 store to get an e-sim only to be told that they have “run out” of e-sims. 

    How do you run out of a digital service?

    If they had supported transferring e-sims from my old phone to my new phone I wouldn’t have been in this situation…

    This is going to happen to me every time I get a new iPhone. 
    My best guess is the stores get a list of ICCIDs that are set up on the company's eSIM carrier profile to be added for iPhones that only have an eUICC for a SIM. If they are out they have to wait for the company to give them more.
  • Reply 4 of 24
    ApplePoorApplePoor Posts: 208member
    Never saw a source for an eSIM at any border cross points of the seven southern African countries we visited driving overland. This sure screws international travel communications when going to the third would countries. Thus the need for my iPhone 13 mini with SIM card slot. At age 78 in les than two weeks, I expect the Mini will last long enough for any more international traveling I might hope to do.
    byronlwilliamlondonsflageliOSDevSWE
  • Reply 5 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,748member
    ApplePoor said:
    Never saw a source for an eSIM at any border cross points of the seven southern African countries we visited driving overland. This sure screws international travel communications when going to the third would countries. Thus the need for my iPhone 13 mini with SIM card slot. At age 78 in les than two weeks, I expect the Mini will last long enough for any more international traveling I might hope to do.
    SiMs and eSIMs contain the same data so why do you think that you can only travel to another country with a physical tray holding a wafer of PVC in it?
    williamlondonjcs2305
  • Reply 6 of 24
    ApplePoorApplePoor Posts: 208member
    Because an eSIM needs an input of information. Such equipment is not in place. A physical SIM card is take the old one out and insert the new one. Only tool needed is a pin to cause the sim tray to open. 

    It has been a BFD to swap cell service with Verizon every year since this eSim started. I have had to go up the food chain to very senior techs at Verizon just to get the latest top model of iPhone operational.

    What happens if my iPhone dies out of country? There is no way to get the Verizon eSim re-enabled if I am in the UK where my wife's family resides.With a SIM card, it was instantaneous to bring a new replacement phone on line. Just swap the SIM card - a no-brainer.

    My iPhone backs up to iCloud so it is simple to restore the "data" to a new phone, but the eSim is not a possible remote restore.

    If one never leaves their home country, then this eSim issue is a moot issue. But as an international traveler it is a real issue.
    edited March 27 muthuk_vanalingambyronlwilliamlondonsflageliOSDevSWEtokyojimu
  • Reply 7 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,748member
    ApplePoor said:
    Because an eSIM needs an input of information. Such equipment is not in place. A physical SIM card is take the old one out and insert the new one. Only tool needed is a pin to cause the sim tray to open. 

    It has been a BFD to swap cell service with Verizon every year since this eSim started. I have had to go up the food chain to very senior techs at Verizon just to get the latest top model of iPhone operational.

    What happens if my iPhone dies out of country? There is no way to get the Verizon eSim re-enabled if I am in the UK where my wife's family resides.With a SIM card, it was instantaneous to bring a new replacement phone on line. Just swap the SIM card - a no-brainer.

    My iPhone backs up to iCloud so it is simple to restore the "data" to a new phone, but the eSim is not a possible remote restore.

    If one never leaves their home country, then this eSim issue is a moot issue. But as an international traveler it is a real issue.
    Putting a SIM in a phone is an "input of information" as you put it. There's no reason why an eSIM containing the same info on a physical SIM cannot be placed on a card in Arabic numerals along with a QR code you can scan into your phone for sale at stores the way you buy gift cards and SIMs in many countries. You then have the ability to store and switch between eSIMs within the device without the need for carrying a pocket full of physical SIMs. The device could even be setup to detect when you're on a different country's carrier for which you have an eSIM stored and then ask if you'd like to switch.
    edited March 27 williamlondon
  • Reply 8 of 24
    Xed said:
    ApplePoor said:
    Because an eSIM needs an input of information. Such equipment is not in place. A physical SIM card is take the old one out and insert the new one. Only tool needed is a pin to cause the sim tray to open. 

    It has been a BFD to swap cell service with Verizon every year since this eSim started. I have had to go up the food chain to very senior techs at Verizon just to get the latest top model of iPhone operational.

    What happens if my iPhone dies out of country? There is no way to get the Verizon eSim re-enabled if I am in the UK where my wife's family resides.With a SIM card, it was instantaneous to bring a new replacement phone on line. Just swap the SIM card - a no-brainer.

    My iPhone backs up to iCloud so it is simple to restore the "data" to a new phone, but the eSim is not a possible remote restore.

    If one never leaves their home country, then this eSim issue is a moot issue. But as an international traveler it is a real issue.
    Putting a SIM in a phone is an "input of information" as you put it. There's no reason why an eSIM containing the same info on a physical SIM cannot be placed on a card in Arabic numerals along with a QR code you can scan into your phone for sale at stores the way you buy gift cards and SIMs in many countries. You then have the ability to store and switch between eSIMs within the device without the need for carrying a pocket full of physical SIMs. The device could even be setup to detect when you're on a different country's carrier for which you have an eSIM stored and then ask if you'd like to switch.
    Reading comprehension issues? @ApplePoor clearly mentioned this line in his very first post - "Never saw a source for an eSIM at any border cross points of the seven southern African countries we visited driving overland". What is your response to this?
    williamlondonsflageliOSDevSWE
  • Reply 9 of 24
    tzterritzterri Posts: 109member
    My iPhone Pro Max does not have a SIM tray. 

    Recently, I had a second number put on my iPhone Pro Max and was surprised to learn it can actually have eight phone numbers on it with two active at once.

    No Sim tray does not seem to be an issue for me.
  • Reply 10 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,748member
    Xed said:
    ApplePoor said:
    Because an eSIM needs an input of information. Such equipment is not in place. A physical SIM card is take the old one out and insert the new one. Only tool needed is a pin to cause the sim tray to open. 

    It has been a BFD to swap cell service with Verizon every year since this eSim started. I have had to go up the food chain to very senior techs at Verizon just to get the latest top model of iPhone operational.

    What happens if my iPhone dies out of country? There is no way to get the Verizon eSim re-enabled if I am in the UK where my wife's family resides.With a SIM card, it was instantaneous to bring a new replacement phone on line. Just swap the SIM card - a no-brainer.

    My iPhone backs up to iCloud so it is simple to restore the "data" to a new phone, but the eSim is not a possible remote restore.

    If one never leaves their home country, then this eSim issue is a moot issue. But as an international traveler it is a real issue.
    Putting a SIM in a phone is an "input of information" as you put it. There's no reason why an eSIM containing the same info on a physical SIM cannot be placed on a card in Arabic numerals along with a QR code you can scan into your phone for sale at stores the way you buy gift cards and SIMs in many countries. You then have the ability to store and switch between eSIMs within the device without the need for carrying a pocket full of physical SIMs. The device could even be setup to detect when you're on a different country's carrier for which you have an eSIM stored and then ask if you'd like to switch.
    Reading comprehension issues? @ApplePoor clearly mentioned this line in his very first post - "Never saw a source for an eSIM at any border cross points of the seven southern African countries we visited driving overland". What is your response to this?
    "Never saw" does not equate to it not being possible. This is no different than when Apple moved from Micro to Nano SIMs and people like you and him freaked the fucked out because cellular companies weren't yet stocked up with the newer, smaller standard (despite it having existed for many years). If this is a problem or overwhelming concern for you Chicken Little's right now then don't get an iPhone that only has eSIMs until you know that the retail outlets have caught up with simple advancements that will easily change in due order and time.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 11 of 24
    kmareikmarei Posts: 133member
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    byronlsflagelwilliamlondoniOSDevSWEtokyojimu
  • Reply 12 of 24
    thedbathedba Posts: 710member
    kmarei said:
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    Don't worry.
    The EU will step in and then iPhone16 will be forced to include a regular SIM, a mini SIM and a micro SIM slot for all phones sold in its territory.
    sflagelwilliamlondontokyojimuDooofus
  • Reply 13 of 24
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,952moderator
    kmarei said:
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    There are quite a few companies offering eSim options:

    https://www.airalo.com/south-africa-esim
    https://www.airalo.com (200 countries)
    https://esim.holafly.com/esim-turkey/
    https://esimchina.net

    If they aren't good enough, someone moving internationally can take an inexpensive Android phone or mobile hotspot:

    https://www.amazon.com/KuWFi-Version-Unlocked-Partner-Wireless/dp/B079FNC379

    I'd expect eSims to be easier to access than getting a physical card. One obvious downside is needing network access to be able to sign up to the service that gives you network access but a lot of places have open wifi. If someone went to Indonesia, it would probably be easier to use a hotel's wifi to get an eSim than to travel to a local phone store and find a prepay sim.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 14 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,748member
    Marvin said:
    kmarei said:
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    [...]

    I'd expect eSims to be easier to access than getting a physical card. One obvious downside is needing network access to be able to sign up to the service that gives you network access but a lot of places have open wifi. If someone went to Indonesia, it would probably be easier to use a hotel's wifi to get an eSim than to travel to a local phone store and find a prepay sim.
    Speaking to that, I see no technical reason why a carrier couldn't offer an eSIM signup option via their network when you connect without a plan. I get text messages when my devices connect to another carrier internationally and sometimes when roaming locally with the latter occurring rarely these days.
  • Reply 15 of 24
    sflagelsflagel Posts: 735member
    This is terrible. A lot of countries do not have unlimited data roaming agreements with UK carriers. This makes using data abroad prohibitively expensive. Getting a SIM card at the airport to pop into the tray was a super convenient way to keep your phone number (on the eSIM) while using data on a local plan on the physical SIM. 
    According to the Apple website, only 21 countries offer pre-paid eSIM. So 150 countries do not. 
    Taking this away will make travelling a lot more expensive and cumbersome, and keep a lot of people from upgrading. 
    edited March 27 williamlondoniOSDevSWEmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 16 of 24
    sflagelsflagel Posts: 735member

    Marvin said:
    kmarei said:
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    There are quite a few companies offering eSim options:

    https://www.airalo.com/south-africa-esim
    https://www.airalo.com (200 countries)
    https://esim.holafly.com/esim-turkey/
    https://esimchina.net

    If they aren't good enough, someone moving internationally can take an inexpensive Android phone or mobile hotspot:

    https://www.amazon.com/KuWFi-Version-Unlocked-Partner-Wireless/dp/B079FNC379

    I'd expect eSims to be easier to access than getting a physical card. One obvious downside is needing network access to be able to sign up to the service that gives you network access but a lot of places have open wifi. If someone went to Indonesia, it would probably be easier to use a hotel's wifi to get an eSim than to travel to a local phone store and find a prepay sim.
    Well, if the carriers in the 90+ countries that do not have unlimited data roaming agreements with EE offer easy pre-paid eSIM at airports and train stations, the same way that you can now buy pre-paid SIM, then you are correct. But I somehow doubt that this will happen soon. As of one month ago, not a single local carrier offered pre-paid eSIM at Agadir airport. 
    edited March 27 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 17 of 24
    JP234JP234 Posts: 1,433member
    Reminds me of when Steve Jobs came back to Apple, and the brand new iMac came out, with no floppy drive, and featuring USB ports. The reactions on this board re. eSIMs is exactly the same. Two years later, everyone has discontinued floppy drives and replaced old SCSI, parallel and serial ports with USB. Won't be long before all the phone makers eliminate the slot to save money on manufacturing costs and free up space for something new we can't live without.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    jcs2305jcs2305 Posts: 1,325member
    When I got my iPhone 14 Pro, I visited my nearest o2 store to get an e-sim only to be told that they have “run out” of e-sims. 

    How do you run out of a digital service?

    If they had supported transferring e-sims from my old phone to my new phone I wouldn’t have been in this situation…

    This is going to happen to me every time I get a new iPhone. 
    When I switched from the 13pro max to the 14pro max it was an automatic process. When you get a new phone use quick start to set the new phone up while in close range to your old phone. It asked if I wanted to transfer my current # to e-SIM I said yes and that was it. There is really no need to have anyone at the Apple store or at brick and mortar phone retailer to handle anything.

    Back you current phone up, make sure you unpair and your apple watch if applicable.. follow the quick start instructions and you're done! Also make sure your current phone is updated to the newest IOS or it may ask you to do that prior to transferring to the new phone. Unless you were coming from a non apple device then there may be some more issues that I am not aware of.

    williamlondon
  • Reply 19 of 24
    jcs2305 said:
    When I got my iPhone 14 Pro, I visited my nearest o2 store to get an e-sim only to be told that they have “run out” of e-sims. 

    How do you run out of a digital service?

    If they had supported transferring e-sims from my old phone to my new phone I wouldn’t have been in this situation…

    This is going to happen to me every time I get a new iPhone. 
    When I switched from the 13pro max to the 14pro max it was an automatic process. When you get a new phone use quick start to set the new phone up while in close range to your old phone. It asked if I wanted to transfer my current # to e-SIM I said yes and that was it. There is really no need to have anyone at the Apple store or at brick and mortar phone retailer to handle anything.

    Back you current phone up, make sure you unpair and your apple watch if applicable.. follow the quick start instructions and you're done! Also make sure your current phone is updated to the newest IOS or it may ask you to do that prior to transferring to the new phone. Unless you were coming from a non apple device then there may be some more issues that I am not aware of.

    The network has to support this. o2 does not. My e-sim was effectively deleted and I had to wait for a new e-sim. Completely defeated the purpose of it being “e” when you still get a letter and a e-sim pack. It would have been quicker to get physical sim. 
    iOSDevSWEmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 20 of 24
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,952moderator
    sflagel said:

    Marvin said:
    kmarei said:
    what a stupid idea,  they obviously haven't done their research
    or they think that US, Europe and Australia are the entire world
    almost all of africa and asia don't suport esim, including china, russia, indonesia, phillipines ets
    neither do some european countres, like turkey etc

    so if you do any international travel, you are screwed
    unless you want to roam and pay a fortune
    guess they don't want to sell phones to about 2 billion people
    There are quite a few companies offering eSim options:

    https://www.airalo.com/south-africa-esim
    https://www.airalo.com (200 countries)
    https://esim.holafly.com/esim-turkey/
    https://esimchina.net

    If they aren't good enough, someone moving internationally can take an inexpensive Android phone or mobile hotspot:

    https://www.amazon.com/KuWFi-Version-Unlocked-Partner-Wireless/dp/B079FNC379

    I'd expect eSims to be easier to access than getting a physical card. One obvious downside is needing network access to be able to sign up to the service that gives you network access but a lot of places have open wifi. If someone went to Indonesia, it would probably be easier to use a hotel's wifi to get an eSim than to travel to a local phone store and find a prepay sim.
    As of one month ago, not a single local carrier offered pre-paid eSIM at Agadir airport. 
    The following eSim uses Maroc Telecom, Reddit user says they used it as they had trouble finding something locally:

    https://www.airalo.com/morocco-esim
    https://www.iam.ma/particulier/offres-mobiles/services/pratique/e-SIM.aspx
    https://www.reddit.com/r/Morocco/comments/y136la/esim_for_tourist_from_maroc_telecom/
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