SIM Card Problems
April 7, 2015
Invented by Giesecke & Devrient of Munich in 1991, SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) cards are tiny circuit boards that carry the caller identification data unique to each user. This allows for a user to switch SIM cards from one device to another with very little hassle or inconvenience. Now that it is legal to "unlock" phones, users can keep their preferred devices when they switch providers and save money when using that phone will traveling overseas. A few issues have arisen regarding SIM cards, but thankfully, you do not have to get a tech genius to rectify them.
Transferring a Card
Most SIM cards are the same size, but adapters are available in cases where compatibility is an issue. To initiate a transfer, put the old card into the new phone and save the data from the old card to the phone's flash memory. You will then remove the old card, insert the new one and save the data to the new card. As the exact steps vary from model to model, follow the instructions provided by your device's manufacturer. A SIM card reader will also serve this purpose, though be aware that there are a number of extra steps involved in that process.
In the past, it was necessary to purchase a new SIM card when switching carriers because you could not take your old device with you. Thankfully, now that unlocking phones is completely legal, this step is no longer necessary. Manufacturers are also helping to make the process an easy one. For example, Apple offers a SIM that is compatible with a list of multiple carriers accessible within the iOS.
Do-It-Yourself Tricks to Fix a Malfunctioning Card
If you receive a SIM error message, it may just be a question of updating your device's firmware to the latest edition. Sometimes a physical impact on the phone can cause the SIM to slightly dislodge or otherwise lose connection, so open the phone and make sure the card is securely in place. Wear and tear can also extend to the inside of your phone. If you detect any damage on the SIM card, that may be the reason for the malfunction and likely necessitates the purchase of a new card. Dust that, ever present electronics enemy, may also be the culprit. Try cleaning the SIM connectors with a lint-free cloth.
Sometimes this issue can result from simple human error. If you have entered your PIN number incorrectly several times, the device will lock and you may need to get a Personal Unlock Key from your mobile provider to rectify the problem.
SIM cards are a key part of how your phone works, but do not be intimidated by them. When you run into problems, follow our instructions. If other issues arise, contact your provider through their website or phone technical support. They are trained to help with these issues and you will likely be back up and calling again within minutes.