Apple is actively working to push its nano-SIM design as a standard in Europe, but Nokia, RIM and Motorola aren’t excited about the idea. Other smartphone makers, it seems, are concerned that should Apple’s SIM card design make it through the standards approval, control over all the patents related to the nano-SIM would be under the iPhone maker’s control.
SIMs are the small cards that most cell service providers use to link handsets to user accounts. Apple is currently using the micro-SIM standard in its GSM-based iPhones and iPads.
The nano-SIM design includes a specification for a tray to hold the card, according to the Financial Times. If that sounds familiar, it should because the iPhone and iPad already include SIM card trays.
Apple said that it will license its nano-SIM design and SIM card tray system to other phone makers should it gain standards approval. That promise, however, doesn’t sit well with some phone makers because they would have to redesign their handsets to accomodate Apple’s design.
A vote on Apple’s nano-SIM is scheduled for next week, and there’s a reasonable chance the design could get at least preliminary approval. Apple has the backing of most of Europe’s cell service providers, and the iPhone maker is working to become the single largest voting body in Europe’s ETSI standards organization.
Should Apple manage to become the largest voting member, it would unseat Nokia from the top spot — a move the Nokia is hoping to block. The phone maker has already filed a protest document.
In response to subsidiary applications Apple has filed to help take the top voting position, Nokia asked whether or not it’s “right that one group of companies can obtain a high amount of votes by filing multiple membership applications.”
Instead of following Apple’s lead, Nokia would prefer phone makers use its own design. According to Nokia, its SIM card design offers “significant technical advantages.”