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  • Kyle Chua

eSIM-Only iPhone Reportedly Coming by 2022

There have been some recent rumblings online that Apple could soon ditch physical SIM card slots for future iPhone releases and the change could be coming earlier than initially expected.

Credit: iFixit

Going by recent speculations, the iPhone 15 Pro will be the first iPhone model to ship without a physical SIM card slot. MacRumors, however, believes that Apple could release an eSIM-only iPhone as early as next year. Citing an anonymous tipster, the Cupertino company reportedly told major U.S. carriers to get ready for the launch of eSIM-only phones by September 2022.

The claim was backed up by Twitter user @dylandkt, a renowned leaker with a reputable track record, saying, "I am in agreement with recent rumours regarding the removal of the physical SIM card tray."

The September 2022 deadline from the claim is particularly noteworthy because it seemingly suggests that the model in question is the iPhone 14, instead of the iPhone 15. Then again, these rumours should always be taken with a grain of salt.

The report adds that as part of the transition, some U.S. carriers will start to offer select iPhone 13 models that don't include a nano-SIM card in the package. These are likely the same iPhone packages that Apple itself sells via its physical and online stores. After all, the iPhone 13 already supports eSIM profiles, where you could digitally subscribe or activate your cellular service by connecting to the internet.

In case you're uninitiated, an eSIM essentially functions the same as a regular SIM card, except it's entirely digital. The advantage is you can easily and conveniently switch between multiple services and lines without having to change cards. It's not available yet in all countries, so there remains a strong chance that Apple will continue to offer iPhones with a SIM card slot in certain markets.

With regard to when this will be available in Singapore, we can't say for sure yet. These claims are still rumours at this point and plans could still change. But given how there are now several local providers that offer eSIM services in the country, including M1, Singtel, MyRepublic and StarHub, we can expect to have eSIM-only iPhone models hit our shores around the same time as other eSIM markets.

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