AppleInsider recently reported the next iPhone might come with its own Apple SIM card. An Apple SIM card was included in the iPad Air 2 introduced last October.
The SIM card is the small plastic card inside your phone that tells the device to connect to a specific carrier’s wireless network. A SIM card usually only works on one carrier’s network, but the SIM card from Apple would be able to work on all networks. You would be able to switch carriers almost instantaneously as long as you had purchased access with that carrier.
Apple described the SIM on its website as follows:
“The new Apple SIM is preinstalled on iPad Air 2 with Wi-Fi + Cellular models. The Apple SIM gives you the flexibility to choose from a variety of short-term plans from select carriers in the U.S. and UK right on your iPad. So whenever you need it, you can choose the plan that works best for you — with no long-term commitments. And when you travel, you may also be able to choose a data plan from a local carrier for the duration of your trip.”
This may accelerate the competition between carriers as consumers shy away from contracts and start to switch between carriers who are offering the lowest prices for service. Alternatively, carriers might negotiate with Apple to leave the feature out or limit it in some way.
The iPhone 6s, which would be the first to include this feature, is expected to debut in September.