Apple and Samsung want to kill off SIM cards

Apple and Samsung are working with the GSMA to kill off the traditional SIM card.

The pair is hoping to develop an electronic version of a SIM that would allow users to quickly and easily change between mobile networks.

The technology behind the e-SIM will be similar to the Apple SIM. This was introduced with the iPad Air 2 and let users quickly switch between data networks on the tablet.

A difference between the two is that while users could remove the Apple SIM, the e-SIM will be non-removable, allowing the SIM card slot to be removed from smartphones.

The GSMA is hoping to finalise the specification of the e-SIM so that it can launch sometime in 2016. The association is confident that a "common architecture" for the e-SIM will be eventually adopted by the telecom industry.

Already, major carriers including AT&T, Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile), Vodafone, Orange, and Telefónica have backed the proposed e-SIM standard.

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