Why must it be such a hassle to swap SIMs?

Att_sim If there's one thing that smartphone manufacturers have going for them, it's consistency. The only problem is, their type of consistency isn't what I would call a good thing. You see, what I'm talking about is the way many companies tuck the SIM slot into the most inconvenient location, usually under the battery compartment. This multi-step process to extract the SIM, and the subsequent reverse process to move it into another device, is maddening.

For example, take my Nexus One. I keep it in a Seidio Innocase II Surface hardshell case, which is comprised of two halves that slide together. In order to swap the SIM, I have to remove the snug-fitting case and battery cover, then remove the battery itself to get access to the SIM. Without a notch to grab, I then have to use a pencil eraser or piece of tape to move the card just enough so I can remove it.

This is in stark contrast to the iPhone, which has an easily accessible external SIM tray that pops out with ease, thanks to a tiny eject hole and a paperclip. It's not a perfect solution, since any case will cover the slot, but it is a far superior design and much easier to get to the SIM. The HTC Advantage was also a fairly good design, with a flip-open door that gave way to the SIM and battery independently once I removed the useless white plastic clip over the SIM.

So does a hard-to-get-to SIM bother anyone else? For people who don't use cases or multiple devices, my rant probably doesn't register, but here's to wishing for some external SIM slots on future devices. Google borrowed part of their look and feel for Android from Apple, so maybe HTC and others could mimic their SIM slot design to make swapping easier, which might be further helped once micro-SIMs become more common. Even better would be the ability to clone SIMs and be done with the entire process altogether, but that's a longshot here in the US.

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Chris King

Chris King is a former contributing editor at Pocketables.