Brand new iPhone4s with Euro SIM in the US.
September 25, 2012 5:19 AM   Subscribe

Should I be concerned about cutting my SIM card into a micro-SIM card for use in the iPhone4s that I just bought? The key issue is that my SIM card is from Europe and I'm currently in the US.

So, I just bought a new iPhone4s and although I live in the EU, I figured I could play with the iPhone here using the ubiquitous wifi everywhere in small town America. Great.

But: I cannot activate my new toy without a SIM card and the one I have here is too big. Maybe someone at the mall can cut it... but then again, I noticed that as my Android doesn't work here ("no service") so I suppose that I won't be able to activate the iPhone either.

Is there any work-around?
posted by mateuslee to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
If you're here for an extended period of time, you can get a prepaid SIM from T-Mobile. You can use it while you are here, then switch to a new micro SIM when you're back in Europe.

The upside on this is that you'll have a phone that works while you're here in the States.
posted by inturnaround at 5:41 AM on September 25, 2012

I've cut a SIM into a micro-SIM using a little help from Google and it was remarkably easy. I even had to cut into some of the contact and it still worked fine.

That said, I don't know if your SIM card would work on it while in the US anyway so perhaps it's not a risk worth taking and you can get a pay as you go or something like that for now.
posted by like_neon at 5:44 AM on September 25, 2012

I'm not sure about European sims, but most Asian sims I've brought back do not work here. So you're better off leaving the sim as it is since I may not even work.
But i have a Sim cutter off ebay for $5 and most phone retailers have them as well.
The phone won't let you activate over wifi?
If you don't want to get a data plan, I think the best work around is to find someone who has a compatible phone, verizon or att. and ask them to borrow their sim to make sure your phone works.
posted by udon at 6:01 AM on September 25, 2012

Verizon's support pages suggest you can activate the iPhone over wi-fi. (It's possible that this differs between AT&T and Verizon models, but it seems unlikely.)
posted by myotheraccount at 8:12 AM on September 25, 2012

@myotheraccount: Yes, if you have a verizon phone that's true -- but mine is unlocked.
posted by mateuslee at 8:17 AM on September 25, 2012

An iPhone needs a SIM card in it to activate. When the SIM reader in mine died somehow in a reset, the Apple store told me it was basically junk.

I have cut a few SIMs down for temporary use as micro SIMs and continued to use them in phones that use a normal SIM by fitting them back into the cutaway portion, so the SIM won't be useless for other phones if you get someone to cut it for you. And the Android not working is not necessarily relevant data on whether the SIM card works, as the phone hardware itself may not work with American bands. However I still doubt it will work as I think data roaming is disabled by default on an iPhone, and you can't turn it on until after you've booted the phone up.

So your safest bet is to borrow or buy a SIM card. If you go to an Apple store, or an ATT store, they might let you use their own SIM to get through activation.
posted by jacalata at 10:40 AM on September 25, 2012

« Older IPad & Security   |   Digital Learning in a School Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.