Thursday, May 19, 2011

Apple wants a SIM card even smaller

In the words of an official of Orange reported by Reuters, Apple has proposed a new standard SIM card even smaller than the micro-SIM. A spokesman for the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) has confirmed the proposal of Cupertino, but no decision has officially been taken. Subsequent events will greatly depend on the operators.

Indeed, the new standard will be proposed to the members of ETSI. If they fall all in agreement, the discussions would only require a few months and the standard will be approved very quickly. In case of discord, the process could take a year or two. Anne Bouverot, head of mobile services at Orange, said the French operator was "happy" to see Apple that this new standard, a sentiment that is shared by its competitors.

The first signs are positive. The most optimistic, as Ms. Bouverot, talk about a marketing terminals compatible with the new card within a year. A SIM card smaller facilitate the design and manufacture of phones thinner and more compact. In January 2010, Apple had popularized the micro-SIM at the time of presentation of the iPad (see "The iPad live on Tom's Hardware").

Taking as active a part in designing a new SIM card format, it can keep out of compatible handsets faster. Operators support behind this initiative appears to show a warming of relations they have with Cupertino. Upon release of the iPhone, which marked the debut of Apple on the telecommunications market, the situation was tense.

The manufacturer refused to see the operators to install their applications or their logo on the phone. They were also upset by the new demands on infrastructure related to new uses, like downloading YouTube videos. The success of its smartphone and its slate appears to have softened operators.

Remains to be seen whether these favors will be good enough for the new standard is adopted quickly.

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