Difference Between Nano and Micro Sim

By: | Updated: Jul-7, 2021

Nano and micro sim are two different types of sim cards. Both are used to store data, but there are some differences between the two. For example, a nano sim is small in size, while a micro sim is large in size. Nano sim can be inserted into devices such as iPhones and iPads, while micro sim can only be inserted into devices such as smartphones and tablets. So what are the other differences between nano and micro sim?

The article will focus on nano and micro sim, the difference between nano and micro sim, and how they store data.

Summary Table:

Nano Sim Micro Sim
Smaller than micro and standard sim card Slightly larger than nano sim but smaller than standard sim card
15mm x 12mm 15mm x 15mm
Usually for Android devices Usually for Iphones and Ipads
Designed to work with 4G LTE networks Suitable for 4G LTE networks and 3G networks

Definitions:

Difference Between Nano and Micro Sim

What is a sim card?

A sim card is a small piece of plastic that contains the information needed to access a cellular network. The information on the sim card includes your phone number, the phone number of the carrier, your account information, and security codes. You can think of it as an identification card for your phone. A sim card is inserted into a sim tray in your phone. A sim tray is a small hole in your phone where you insert or remove the sim card.

How do sim cards store data?

Sim cards store data by storing charge on an insulated metallic film. When the charge is positive, it represents a 1, and when the charge is negative, it represents a 0. When you want to store data on a sim card, you apply a positive or negative charge to the metallic film and store it. To read the data back, you run a current through the metallic film and see what charge is left. This will tell you what data was stored originally.

How do sim cards work?

Sim cards are very small integrated circuits (chips). The chip inside the sim card has the circuitry needed to read and write data to the metallic film inside of it. In order to read or write data, you run a current through the chip and then measure what charge is left on the metallic film. The charge that is left on the metallic film is the data.

What is a nano sim?

A nano sim is a smaller version of a standard size sim card. A nano sim has approximately half the surface area of a standard size sim and can be used in a device that accepts normal sized cards. Nano sims are often used in smartphones that are made for use in other countries.

What is a micro sim?

A micro sim is a smaller version of a standard size sim card, and is slightly bigger in size than a nano sim. A micro sim also has approximately one third the surface area of a standard size sim and can be used in a device that accepts normal sized cards.

Nano Vs. Micro:

There are many differences between nano and micro sim. Some of them are:

1. Size:

Nano sim is smaller than micro sim. It is 20% smaller than micro sim. A nano sim is 15mm x 12mm and a micro sim is 15mm x 15mm.

2. Technology:

Nano sim is designed to work with 4G LTE networks. Micro sim is designed to work with 3G networks. Nano sim can usually support faster data transfer than micro sim. However, both nano and micro sim can work with 3G and 4G networks. Only the technology is slightly different.

3. Design:

The design of nano sim is such that it can be embedded into a device with a very small hole. Nano sim is ideal for small devices such as mobile phones, modems, and tablets. Micro sim is designed to work with bigger devices such as tablets, smart watches, and smart TVs.

4. Storage:

Usually, nano sim has a storage capacity of 8K bits and a data transfer rate of about 10MB per second. Micro sim has a storage capacity of 64K bits and a data transfer rate of about 10MB per second.

5. Compatibility:

Both nano and micro sim are compatible with almost all types of devices. The only difference is that a micro sim cannot be used in a device that has a nano sim slot. Therefore, the standard sim card needs to be replaced or cut to be nano-sized.

6. Operating System:

Nano sim is designed to work with the Android operating system. Micro sim is designed to work with the iOS operating system. However, the technology is similar.

Smartphones that support nano sim include:

  • Apple iPhone 5, 6, 7, 8 and X
  • Samsung Galaxy S5, S6, S7 and S8
  • Google Pixel and Pixel 2
  • Motorola Moto G4, G5, G6 and X4
  • LG V30, V30+, G7 ThinQ and X4+
  • Nokia 8 Sirocco, 9 PureView and 10 Plus

Smartphones that support micro sim include:

  • Xiaomi Mi 5, Mi 6, Mi Mix 2 and Mi 8
  • Samsung Galaxy A32, A52, A72
  • Nokia Lumia
  • Huawei P20 Pro, P20 Lite, Nova 3i
  • Oppo F5, F7 and A57

7. Availability:

Both nano and micro sim are available in all the countries. However, not all devices support nano sim. Sim cards are usually available in shops that sell mobile phones with the standard size. As briefly mentioned above, you need to cut the sim card to the size of nano sim if you want to use it in a device that has a nano sim slot, and vice versa.

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