The Different Kinds of SIM Cards (Standard, Micro, Nano)

Whenever you swap phones, you probably don’t even check to see what kind of SIM card your new phone uses. If the new phone doesn’t use the same you are going to have two problems; you won’t be able to use the phone, and you will lose all the contacts you had when you create a copy.

You may know that there are different kinds of SIM Cards, but you probably didn’t know that there are different types of SIM cards as well. Let’s take a look at the various types of SIM cards, so the next time you switch phones, you’ll be well informed.

Standard SIM Card

The standard SIM card is the largest kind of SIM card you are going to come across. If you are going to buy a recent smartphone, then this is a SIM card you are not going to come across. The standard sized SIM card only comes with smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S3 or even on very basic models such as the Nokia 105.

The standard sized SIM card only comes with smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy SIII or even on very basic models such as the Nokia 105. The standard SIM card measure about 1 Inch long by 0.6 Inches wide. So, what types of smartphones will have a standard sized SIM card? Well, besides the models I just mentioned, you can find a standard sized SIM card on phones such as:

Different Kinds of SIM Cards
  • iPhone 3GS
  • Blackberry 9720
  • Blackberry Bold Touch 9900
  • Blackberry Curve 9320
  • Blackberry Curve 9360
  • HTC Desire
  • HTC Desire 310
  • HTC Desire C
  • Huawei Y3
  • LG Optimus L5 II
  • Samsung Nexus S
  • Samsung Galaxy Y

There are quite a few more models that carry a standard sized SIM card, but I wanted to show you at least a few.

Micro SIM Card

Have you ever come across a SIM card with extra plastic around it? If so, then that was a Micro SIM card. That type old card is used on phones that were made from 2010 to this very day. The micro SIM card only measures 0.6 Inches by 0.5 Inches long. You will see a Micro SIM card on phones such as:

  • iPhone 4
  • iPhone 4S
  • Blackberry Porsche Design P9983
  • Blackberry Q10
  • Blackberry Q5
  • HTC Desire 300
  • HTC One M7
  • HTC Windows Phone 8X
  • Huawei Ascend P7
  • LG G3

Why does the Micro SIM card have that extra plastic? It is for a good reason. It has the extra plastic so you can either use it on a phone that uses a Micro SIM card or a standard sized card.

Nano SIM Card

Different Kinds of SIM Cards

Finally, there is the Nano SIM card. This is the SIM card that is being used right now, and this little guy only measures 12.3×8.8mm. You will find this SIM card on modern phones such as the newest SamSung Galaxy Note, iPhone, LG, Sony The list for the phone is extensive since it is the most recent type of SIM card.

A problem many users face with Nano SIM cards is that since they are so small, they have a hard time figuring out where it goes. Each manufacturer put the Nano SIM card slot wherever they want. If you are having a hard time finding out where the slot is on your phone, you can either read the manual or visit the manufacturer’s website.

You can always try to see if the slot is either behind the battery. If your phone has a removable battery, take out the phones outer case and pull the battery. You should be able to see a lot where the Nano SIM card would go. Make sure that the SIM card is facing down since the circuit needs to be in contact with the metal pins.

If you still can’t find it can also be next to the battery or somewhere outside the phone. Look carefully, and I’m sure you’re going to find it.

Avoid This Mistake

Different Kinds of SIM Cards

Whatever you do, don’t put the Nano SIM card into the MicroSD card slot. There is one slot for the SIM card and another for the MicroSD card that expands your phone’s memory. These are two different slots that have nothing to do with each other. If you see a lot that says MicroSD on the outside of your phone, this is where the memory card goes, not your SIM card.


As you can see, you only need to learn the difference between three SIM cards. Thank goodness that the list is not very long since having to learn the difference between various models would be a real headache. What SIM card does your device use? Share your thoughts in the comments.

5/5 - (1 vote)
Judy Sanhz
Judy Sanhz

I can never get enough of tech in general, whether it's Android or web apps, but helping others solve their tech problems also brings great satisfaction. I carry a device wherever I go and I'm always connected. Life without Internet just sounds too scary to me. :-).

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