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New 'iSIM' technology could combine your smartphone's processor and SIM card into one...

By Polycount ยท 8 replies
Feb 21, 2018
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  1. Smartphone manufacturers have been trying to reduce the size of their devices since they first hit the market. Indeed, some have speculated Apple's "courageous" decision to remove the headphone jack from their phones was partially a result of this trend.

    Now, chip designer ARM may have found a way to push the envelope even further. According to The Verge, the company has designed a new component called an "iSIM" that aims to pack SIM cards into the same chip as the processor. The component reportedly takes up a mere "fraction of a millimeter squared" compared to current SIM cards which tend to be about 12.3mm x 8.8mm in overall size.

    Naturally, as devices have gotten smaller over time, packing increasingly powerful hardware inside them has become a pretty difficult task. As such, innovations such as this could prove to be nearly essential for the future health of the industry.

    The space the iSIM would free up could allow for larger batteries, even thinner phones, additional RAM capacity or simply more powerful mobile hardware overall down the line. Furthermore, card manufacturers could save quite a bit of money. Instead of shelling out "tens of cents" per card, they could reportedly be paying "single-digit cents" for iSIM hardware.

    With all of that said, it's worth noting the mere existence of the iSIM doesn't really mean much. It's only going to be making its way to smaller "Internet of Things" devices to begin with and ARM will still need major smartphone industry players to jump onboard for iSIMs to launch with upcoming mobile devices.

    Permalink to story.

  2. seeprime

    seeprime TS Guru Posts: 265   +255

    This simplicity will add complexity for some users, since you won't be able to move your SiM card from one phone to another. No thanks.
    Jamlad, pawel04 and psycros like this.
  3. TheBigT42

    TheBigT42 TS Maniac Posts: 280   +164

    And how much with these cost?
  4. QuantumPhysics

    QuantumPhysics TS Maniac Posts: 250   +171

    I am annoyed with this "thin phone madness".

    If Apple made the iPhone X as large as the iPhone 8 Plus or as thick as an iPhone 3G...do you think people wouldn't buy it?

    Do you really think people would say:

    "O man I woulda bought that iPhone with its large 5000 mah battery - and 3 day battery life - but O MY it was so thick".

    Considering everyone adds a massive case to their phones to protect the $500+ glass on back or the $300+ glass on front?
    Burty117, Jamlad, Tanstar and 3 others like this.
  5. Dragonstongue

    Dragonstongue TS Rookie

    Larger batteries, even thinner phones, additional RAM capacity or simply more powerful mobile hardware overall down the line...

    Yeh Thinner is what THEY want, pretty sure the people actually buying them do not mind them being 4.5-5.5 inch wide and thick enough that it is not bending/snapping easily etc....

    not to mention, am pretty sure if the maker (such as LG, Samsung etc) wanted to, they could have a built in SIM card that is more easily secured deleted etc...I do not know about anyone else, but, I WANT a headphone jack, I want the jack to be completely separate from the charging port, I do NOT want a thinner more breakable ever more expensive "smartphone"

    There is no reason AT ALL in my opinion for a phone that uses next to no power draining its battery so fast if it is using the lowest leakage processor, purging its memory effectively etc, the phone should be "smart enough" to turn off what you basically never use so it conserves power, reduces heat etc...it is harder and harder to find a phone not "octacore" that is not burning its battery out so fast, I know my moto G4 play (not high end by any means) if I turn off all that wonky crap from running, I can make the phone last at least 7 days before "should charge" if I listen to music, do a few phone calls etc than ~5 days...Android 7.1.1 really sucks in that department, what used to need a charge every 7-10 days now needs one every 3-5 days :mad:

    Anyways...yeh screw the thinner and thinner, more and more glass phone "fad" these phone makers THINK we want, how about use your #$%#$% heads, do you want a phone that weighs next to nothing, bends if you look at it the wrong way and shatters if a fly touches it, no? so why in the @!#$@$# do you THINK WE the ones paying for these things do?
    Tanstar likes this.
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 10,769   +4,585

    Upgradable SoC or GTFA

    In other words choose the system you want for the handset you want.
  7. Tanstar

    Tanstar TS Evangelist Posts: 656   +200

    Make the isim as replaceable as current SIMS and we could upgrade the processor. Granted, then we'd buy phones less often and they'd lose money. Not happening.
  8. enemys

    enemys TS Maniac Posts: 172   +166

    That's not true, your number is not physically bound to the card - it can be moved remotely to another card by your service provider. That being said, unless some fully-automated number transfer process gets integrated into the new phone setup, it will be inconvenient to swap phones, since it'll require provider's assistance.
  9. seeprime

    seeprime TS Guru Posts: 265   +255

    Added complexity, compared to simply moving a card to another phone that you like to use for different purposes.

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