Apple finally managed to convince the ETSI — and the rest of its competitors — to adopt their new 4FF “Nano Sim” standard, which clearly gives Cupertino a design that favors a thinner iPhone 5. Does Apple’s move to fast-track this vote lend any credence to “June iPhone 5 Trutherism?”
We’ve made it a point to follow the story line involving Apple, its ill-received “Nano sim” card standard, and the ETSI vote on it. After months of delays, due to Apple’s competitors’ alarm at what a quick adoption of the new, so-called “4FF” standard might do to their own smartphone production schedules in 2012, Apple managed to get their way.
PC World reports that: “[t]he Smart Card Platform Technical Committee of the European Telecommunication Standards Institute (ETSI) agreed a standard for so-called nano-SIMs on Friday. Apple’s specification beat a competing proposal from Nokia, Research In Motion and Google-owned Motorola Mobility.”
The iPhone 5 rumor mill began following the story about the Nano sim standard based on the fact that this new design would fit nicely into the belief that Apple is working on an iPhone 5 that is/was supposedly to be markedly thinner. I don’t know that the recent 9to5Mac photos of purported leaked iPhone 5 parts necessarily reveals a radically thinner form factor, but at the very least, the Nano sim standard is still believed to be a necessity for the new iPhone’s overall design, since it “. . . will be 40 percent smaller than the current smallest SIM card design, at 12.3 millimeters by 8.8 mm by 0.67 mm, according to ETSI.”
You’ll recall that one of the first iPhone 5 part leaks this year was that of a sim tray, which at face value seemed to be remarkably similar to the ones used on the iPhone 4 and 4S. It remains to be seen at this point how veracious that leak really was, and whether that tray could still be associated with the 4FF standard. But considering that the tech media has moved well past both the leaked sim tray and home button stories to the juicier bits recently offered by 9to5Mac, many are likely to overlook how this ruling might negate any hope of the sim tray story being true.
Entirely absent from the PC World story is how this late-hour victory for Apple might impact the release date of the iPhone 5. June-announced iPhone 5 truthers have surmised that’s Apple’s rather desperate pitch to get their Nano sim standard enacted (remember, they gave away the new standard royalty-free) might speak to Cupertino’s need to shore up the passage of the standard in time for a June iPhone 5 announcement and July release. The article did, however, report on the dismay from RIM and Nokia over the adoption of the new standard, with this cryptic line:
“Nokia, for its part, accused Apple of misusing the standardization process and said that it wouldn’t license essential patents related to Apple’s proposal if that proposal won.”
I would love to get some clarification of how Nokia thinks that Apple “misused” the standardization process, as it could very well be making reference to the fact that Apple fast-tracked the new standardization in order to force its competitors to retool competing 2012 smartphone designs while giving themselves the opportunity to release the iPhone 5 ahead of them. If this is the case, it would have been a risky gamble for Apple, since, if they had failed to gain passage of the standard and iPhone 5 production is predicated on it, it would have caused further delays.
June iPhone 5 trutherism still remains on the fringe of the tech media, with the majority of pundits and enthusiasts eyeing October as the iPhone 5 release. However, the fact that the Nano sim issue has been resolved at this time is yet another stand of evidence that truthers can use to ratchet up hope for an iPhone 5 announcement at the WWDC.
By Michael Nace