Dubious 'iPhone 15' SIM tray removal rumor given weight by leakers

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware
An iffy rumor from a Brazilian blog claiming Apple will remove the SIM tray from some iPhone 15' models has gained traction, with an anonymous tip and a known leaker adding fuel to the claim.




The SIM card tray has been a long-standing component of the iPhone, even with Apple's inclusion of the eSIM in later versions. A dubious report from late December claimed that it would be removed from some models by 2023, a claim that has seemingly garnered some support.

A December 24 post by Brazilian site BlogdoiPhone cited "internal sources" that the Pro models of the "iPhone 15" in 2023 would offer consumers dual-SIM support, but only through using two eSIMs. This would mean there wouldn't be a SIM tray used at all for that particular model, if true.

While the rumor is doubtful given industry agreements and international requirements, it has somehow gained some support.

An anonymous tip to MacRumors on Sunday claimed Apple has told U.S. carriers it will be launching eSIM-only models in September 2022, a year earlier than previously rumored. The tipster also provided the publication with a "seemingly legitimate document" outlining the timeline for the initiative's rollout, though the document didn't specifically mention iPhones or Apple at all.

The plan allegedly will involve some carriers providing the iPhone 13 without an in-box nano SIM from the second quarter of 2022. If this is correct, then Apple would theoretically do the same with the "iPhone 14."

Adding more fuel to the fire, leaker @Dylandkt on Twitter posted on Monday in "agreement with recent rumors regarding the removal of the physical SIM card tray." The leaker also retweeted a post from February 14, one claiming sources alleged Apple wanted to remove the tray quicker, and that an eSIM-only iPhone was being tested.

Given Apple's sale of iPhones in China with a tray capable of taking two SIMs, and continuing demand internationally for that model, it seems unlikely that Apple will do away with SIM trays anytime soon. While many carriers provide eSIM services, it is probable that Apple would still produce models with the SIM tray alongside the alleged eSIM-only versions.

The iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro currently support two eSIMs, up from the single eSIM from earlier models.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    No way to avoid ATT's "upgrade" fee
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 2 of 24
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    williamlondonGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 3 of 24
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Love how a rumor is used as a reason to bash Apple, knowing nothing as you do about this, but don't let reality get in the way of your negative narrative. How fucking juvenile.

    The title even says, "dubious."
    edited December 2021 JapheyJanNLmacxpressmac_dogKTRfastasleepStrangeDays
  • Reply 4 of 24
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,355member
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Maybe you shouldn’t worry so much about the iPhone 15 when the 14 is still almost a year away? What ridiculous and obvious concern trolling. Right, I’m sure people are gonna switch to Android en mass, because today’s Apple makes such irrational decisions, right?

    Oh, and expandable storage stopped being a selling point on mobile devices a long time ago. Nobody gives a shit, and every single metric proves that. But keep beating that dead horse. 
    williamlondonmac_dogStrangeDays
  • Reply 5 of 24
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    What makes you so certain that carriers in foreign countries will not support eSIM in a couple of years? Physical SIMs are bad for consumers. I’m definitely hoping that more and more carriers around the world start adopting it. That way you don’t even need to go to a carrier store and you could just switch to the local eSIM from your hotel room.
    mac_dogwilliamlondoncaladanianstompyStrangeDays
  • Reply 6 of 24
    slurpy said:
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Maybe you shouldn’t worry so much about the iPhone 15 when the 14 is still almost a year away? What ridiculous and obvious concern trolling. Right, I’m sure people are gonna switch to Android en mass, because today’s Apple makes such irrational decisions, right?

    Oh, and expandable storage stopped being a selling point on mobile devices a long time ago. Nobody gives a shit, and every single metric proves that. But keep beating that dead horse. 
    Someone's trolling here and it's not the OP - having a eSIM or not having a eSIM makes zero affect to me, I'll always buy an iPhone given the choice, but the OP raises a valid point about the need for replaceable SIM cards when travelling - wish the responses here were not so unnecessarily aggressive. 
    edited December 2021 macplusplusGeorgeBMacwilliamlondon
  • Reply 7 of 24
    SIM card in foreign country is a ripoff anyway because data/call usage drains off so quickly and it keeps nagging you to pay more in order to get more. I stop using it and use AT&T's $10 per day unlimited data/call instead without SIM card requirement when travel.
    12Strangers
  • Reply 8 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,463member
    Dubious or not, I certainly can't wait for this to be a reality.
    12Strangers
  • Reply 9 of 24
    andyorkneyandyorkney Posts: 6unconfirmed, member
    Seems unlikely unless the eSim availability changes dramatically. As things are in the UK, there are very limited options when looking to connect with an eSim. VMNOs (virtual mobile network operators) who currently offer some of the best and flexible tariff deals are missing from the eSim market. The networks appear to blame Apple for the issue, Apple appears to blame the networks. I hope the prospect of an IPhone without a sim tray develops the market maturity, but I’m not holding my breath.
  • Reply 10 of 24
    SIM card in foreign country is a ripoff anyway because data/call usage drains off so quickly and it keeps nagging you to pay more in order to get more. I stop using it and use AT&T's $10 per day unlimited data/call instead without SIM card requirement when travel.
    What? Pay $10 a day ($300 a month) instead of buying a SIM card for 10€ in Europe or $6 in Vietnam for a month of unlimited data? I know which one I always choose. 
    muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondon
  • Reply 11 of 24
    I used esims for roaming for the first time this year. Prepaid Global seems to cover a huge amount of countries. There is a lot room for improvement to make the setup more convenient, still I think it does not take longer than fiddling around with nano sims. Only real downside for me is that you need an active WiFi connection to activate the esim whereas the plastic just needs to be inserted.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 12 of 24
    Not sure about that last sentence.  I have multiple eSims in my iPhone 11 Pro Max!
  • Reply 13 of 24
    slurpy said:
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Maybe you shouldn’t worry so much about the iPhone 15 when the 14 is still almost a year away? What ridiculous and obvious concern trolling. Right, I’m sure people are gonna switch to Android en mass, because today’s Apple makes such irrational decisions, right?

    Oh, and expandable storage stopped being a selling point on mobile devices a long time ago. Nobody gives a shit, and every single metric proves that. But keep beating that dead horse. 
    Someone's trolling here and it's not the OP - having a eSIM or not having a eSIM makes zero affect to me, I'll always buy an iPhone given the choice, but the OP raises a valid point about the need for replaceable SIM cards when travelling - wish the responses here were not so unnecessarily aggressive. 
    They’re an active and known commenter here. The concern troll allegation is legit.
    williamlondonStrangeDays
  • Reply 14 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,463member
    Seems unlikely unless the eSim availability changes dramatically. As things are in the UK, there are very limited options when looking to connect with an eSim. VMNOs (virtual mobile network operators) who currently offer some of the best and flexible tariff deals are missing from the eSim market. The networks appear to blame Apple for the issue, Apple appears to blame the networks. I hope the prospect of an IPhone without a sim tray develops the market maturity, but I’m not holding my breath.
    Apple already has the option in their devices. This is not unlike when Apple switched from the micro SIM to the nano SIM card. All those slow-to-move MVNOs had to move fast to support the smaller SIM card and there no option to support both in the iPhone for many years before Apple made the change. The contact area was the same so you could cut it down to fit, but that's only something a user could reasonably do, not a carrier.
  • Reply 15 of 24
    fred1fred1 Posts: 960member
    SIM card in foreign country is a ripoff anyway because data/call usage drains off so quickly and it keeps nagging you to pay more in order to get more. I stop using it and use AT&T's $10 per day unlimited data/call instead without SIM card requirement when travel.
    On a recent visit to the US I got a prepaid eSIM with data, calls, and text all for $40 for a month. No nagging involved. 
    edited December 2021 StrangeDays
  • Reply 16 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,463member
    slurpy said:
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Maybe you shouldn’t worry so much about the iPhone 15 when the 14 is still almost a year away? What ridiculous and obvious concern trolling. Right, I’m sure people are gonna switch to Android en mass, because today’s Apple makes such irrational decisions, right?

    Oh, and expandable storage stopped being a selling point on mobile devices a long time ago. Nobody gives a shit, and every single metric proves that. But keep beating that dead horse. 
    Someone's trolling here and it's not the OP - having a eSIM or not having a eSIM makes zero affect to me, I'll always buy an iPhone given the choice, but the OP raises a valid point about the need for replaceable SIM cards when travelling - wish the responses here were not so unnecessarily aggressive. 
    What valid point is that? You really think it's more convenient to carry a case with a selection of physical, nano SIMs in them which require you to also carry a tool to open the SIM tray and then switch out this tiny piece of plastic over simply using the UI to select a different carrier and account option you've saved in your device to its Secure Enclave with the same in which you can scan a QR or bar code with your built-in camera? Personally, I'm someone that likes to utilize their iPhone which is why I use their Notes.app, Calendar.app and many other features of my iPhone instead of carrying around physical options when they technology is here to make it smaller, faster, and cheaper.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 17 of 24
    XedXed Posts: 1,463member
    fred1 said:
    SIM card in foreign country is a ripoff anyway because data/call usage drains off so quickly and it keeps nagging you to pay more in order to get more. I stop using it and use AT&T's $10 per day unlimited data/call instead without SIM card requirement when travel.
    On a recent visit to the US I got a prepaid eSIM with data, calls, and text all for $40 for a month. No nagging involved. 
    Some people oddly have it engrained that you can only connect to cellular towers with a physical SIM card then can hold in their hand despite the nominal data on them easily being added through other means to the secure storage that is already on the device. Of course, some people also identify with their captures, so maybe it's not so odd after all.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    I'm not sure that this is really up to Apple.
    An iPhone that can't connect to cell service would need to be renamed iBrick15.

    That said:  going to e-SIM is a worthy goal.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 19 of 24
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,779moderator
    I'm not sure that this is really up to Apple.
    An iPhone that can't connect to cell service would need to be renamed iBrick15.
    Apple has a list of providers worldwide offering eSim support:

    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT209096

    Even if the available services are lacking, I'm sure that having over 200 million people requesting better support or moving to providers who do would be enough to encourage them.

    There's also the option to put physical sim cards in external cases:



    Apple can provide sim cases and these are easier to replace the cards in. Most people will use eSim services.

    The tray takes up way too much space for what it does (silver square on the left), they could probably add about 10% more battery without it:

    williamlondonGeorgeBMacravnorodomstompy
  • Reply 20 of 24
    slurpy said:
    Well, that is show stopper if you want to travel to foreign country and use store purchased SIM card with local phone number. Not all providers support eSIM. Good luck with iPhone. Want to know how much roaming and data services cost overseas even if you enable special travel program? Just check with AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. Learn for yourself. It looks like Apple would not leave people any option, but buy Android. Heck, some of them still may allow even flash card to extend storage memory unlike iPhone.
    Maybe you shouldn’t worry so much about the iPhone 15 when the 14 is still almost a year away? What ridiculous and obvious concern trolling. Right, I’m sure people are gonna switch to Android en mass, because today’s Apple makes such irrational decisions, right?

    Oh, and expandable storage stopped being a selling point on mobile devices a long time ago. Nobody gives a shit, and every single metric proves that. But keep beating that dead horse. 
    Someone's trolling here and it's not the OP - having a eSIM or not having a eSIM makes zero affect to me, I'll always buy an iPhone given the choice, but the OP raises a valid point about the need for replaceable SIM cards when travelling - wish the responses here were not so unnecessarily aggressive. 
    Nah the other guy is trolling because he's bringing up unrelated neckbeard nonsense like (lol) no expandable storage on iPhone. That ship sailed over a decade ago.

    This user trolled so frequently I blocked them years ago.
    edited December 2021 williamlondon
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