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Old 11-22-2006, 06:46 PM
John Navas
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Default NEWS: USB crowned as high speed SIM standard

ETSI has finally agreed a standard for high-speed access to the SIM
used in GSM mobile phones, after several years of prevarication and
filibustering the winner is...USB.

SIM chips in phones currently communicate with a handset over a
serial connection at a speed of 9600bps, which is fine for exchanging
cryptographic keys or saving an SMS message to a SIM with a 16KB
capacity, but Orange (in France) are already deploying SIMs with a
capacity of 128MB, making faster communications essential.


The handset manufacturers, who tried to push their own standard at
the last minute, also have nothing to gain here as they would much
prefer users to store their data on the phone.

So it is only the network operators can gain from using a
high-capacity SIM, and they have shown little interest in doing so.

The application deployed by Orange is clever enough: allowing the
user to carry the whole user interface with them when they change
handsets, including graphics, ring tones and menus, but that requires
customised software on the handset too, which is not widely


John Navas

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