I would really like the next iPhone to support (at least) 2 SIM cards. Here’s why.

I travel internationally multiple times a year. Every time I do, I end up either picking up a local SIM card in the country I visit, or getting a Matrix card in advance. While Indian carriers do have data plans for international use, they are exorbitantly expensive, and it is much cheaper to use a local SIM card. From what I understand, this isn’t any better in most other countries.

This means that I end up having to carry 2 phones whenever I travel, which is really inconvenient. Theft is a concern when traveling. Even if theft isn’t a concern (can’t imagine my iPhone being stolen in Cupertino, for instance), it is really irritating to have two phones around all the time. I can’t replace my Indian SIM card since some people will still try to call or SMS me on my Indian number, and I can’t ignore those calls for weeks (not everyone knows I’m out of the country).

In India, it makes sense to have more than one SIM card even for daily use for a couple of reasons. First, phone numbers are given out here like email addresses are in the US. Literally everything you sign up for needs a phone number. Sadly, there is no spam filtering for phone calls and SMS. Second, data speeds (3G/4G/LTE) vary wildly by location and carrier. For instance, Airtel doesn’t work in my house at all. IDEA works quite well in my house, and Vodafone is alright. However, in my office, Vodafone works quite well, and IDEA works alright. In another office that I often work out of, Airtel works the best. I can’t rely on my fiber connection (ACT) always working. It goes out for a day or two more or less every month, so my cell connection is my backup internet connection. Therefore, I have to keep at least 2, if not 3 cell connections active for backup purposes.

Now I more than understand that what I’m asking or isn’t easy to do. From a hardware perspective, a nano SIM + tray isn’t exactly small. From a software perspective the complexities of dealing with multiple phone numbers on iOS will likely have a lot of edge cases that need to be handled carefully. Having said that though, it sure would be nice to have one phone that can do all this stuff, and help me avoid situations like this one.

Gopal Sharma

gps gopalkri