Except rumours and speculation about the iPhone 5's specifications, there has been no official announcement of the phone yet. However, if the rumours are to be believed, the next iPhone is expected to be launched in the first week of August. But while this may not be a fact, it appears that European carriers are now placing orders for nano-SIM cards to prepare for the launch of the iPhone 5, a report by iMore who have sourced the information via The Financial Times states.

The report states, “Since Apple has succeeded in getting a newer, smaller nano-SIM standard passed, Europeans carriers are now reportedly placing orders for the tiny new chips in anticipation of the launch. The Financial Times says it's because carriers don't want to get caught flat-footed again, the way they were when Apple switched to micro SIMs with the original iPad and later, the iPhone 4.”

The SIM wars begin

The SIM wars continue

The Financial Times report states: “One informed person said that the major networks were keen to be ahead of demand this time, however. He added that the iPhone 5 was likely to be similar sized as the iPhone 4 although slimmer and with a fully metal body.”

Earlier this year, Apple was embroiled in a battle with various smartphone manufacturers over a new standard for SIM cards. The brand had aimed for the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) to recognize their proposed nano-SIM format as the next standard of SIM cards, as opposed to the traditional SIM cards and Micro-SIM cards; the latter of which is now being adopted not only by Apple devices, but also by Motorola and Nokia. After facing stiff competition, their new proposed standard for SIM cards has been approved.

The report by iMore goes on to state, “The Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card is what's used by GSM carriers (including LTE carriers) to provide network service to a phone, tablet, or other cellular devices. The nano-SIM contains the same chip as the micro-SIM found in the current iPhone 4S and iPhone 4, and all models of iPad, as well as the mini-SIM found in the iPhone 3GS and other phones. The plastic packaging around it is simply almost completely gone, which means the tray that holds it can be smaller, which means it takes up slightly less space inside the device.”

A video that surfaced earlier last month showed what appears to be the casing of the next iPhone. It can be seen that the SIM slot is a lot smaller in comparison to the one used on the iPhone 4S. This news only added fuel to speculation that Apple may in fact adopt a nano-SIM on their next iPhone.

Other major changes include the relocation of the headphone jack from the top to the bottom, the redesigned speaker grille and the connector dock. If these leaked images are in fact the back and front plates of the iPhone 5, we can expect the front facing FaceTime camera to be moved above the earpiece to a centralized position rather than to the side, unlike the camera on the iPhone 4 and 4S.

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