Don’t Plan on Cutting Micro SIM to fit iPhone 5 Nano SIM Slot

The iPhone 5 will likely use a new smaller Nano SIM instead of the traditional Micro SIM card.

The past iPhones, you just have been able to cut a SIM card to fit a Micro SIM card slot, but it looks like users will be out of luck when it comes to cutting a Micro SIM to Nano SIM size.

Only Gizmos reports Giesecke & Devrient, the company manufacturing the new Nano SIM cards, says cutting a Micro SIM to Nano SIM size won’t work.

Sim card Size

Micro SIM cards reportedly cannot be converted to Nano SIM size.

It turns out, as well as a smaller size, the Nano SIM is reportedly 15% thinner than the Micro SIM cards. So even if users cut the Micro SIM to Nano SIm size with a knife or nano SIM cutter tool, the Sim card would still be too thick to put in the iPhone 5.

The message from reads as follows,


As you surely know some people have cut down a “conventional” SIM (2FF) in a MicroSIM (3FF) with a knife or with a pair of scissors. Sometimes it has worked, sometimes not. Reason that this method functioned was that the 2FF and the 3FF SIM card has the same thickness. The thickness of the Nano-SIM is reduced by about 15 percent – so we think that a reducing only in size is not working.

There is always the possibility that someone will discover a way to slice 15% of the thickness of a Micro SIM off without affecting the chip inside the card, but we’ll need to wait and see.

This is bad news for users who want to use the iPhone 5 on prepaid networks like Straight Talk and Red Pocket Mobile, neither of which currently offer a Nano SIM card.


  1. lucas says

    This is bogus. The 15% they are referring to is 0.09mm. That is the thickness of a think sheet of paper. 1 or 2 swipes with fine sand paper and you’re fine. Check the wikipedia site for sim cards, there is plenty of room to give the plastic back of a sim card a “haircut”. Most importantly, the foil/chip that is used for a regular and microsim is the exact same size for the nanosim. It’s simply further reducing the plastic surrounding the chip.
    I’ll be ordering my factory unlocked iPhone 5 this week and trimming my sim. No worries.

    • Paul says

      can anyone confirm this? I am doubting that this is the case, particularly because it will be available on so many European and Asian networks where network locking is virtually unheard of…

  2. Steve says

    There are Nano Sim card cutters already on ebay – just purchased one myself. I think the thickness wont be a problem and they will fit in with a push. If not I will file with sandpaper like original OP said :-).

  3. Owen says

    lucas I’m with you, 400 grade sandpaper FTW, stop when you get the right thickness or see the back of the die ;)

  4. Dirk says

    As I said in my reply to the OP, all research indicates that if you try to cut your micro sim into a nano sim you will end up damaging it beyond repair. You are welcome to try but good sense advises against it.

    • Steve says

      @ Dirk – if you measure the connectors on the micro sim and compare it to the nano sim measurements given there is clear space around the connectors on the sim to do this.

  5. bobby says

    Im on straight talk unlimited data talk and text for $125 for 3 months on atat network..Im gonna buy the sim cutter tool and use sand paper…With straight talk you save $2400 over 2 years with 2 lines versus standard atat plans…thats after figuring the cost different of the iPhones….Its a complete no brainer to save this much money…Except for the 30 millions idiots on atat with contracts LOL

  6. pj says

    it can easily be done, why is it when people are proved wrong they cant just shut up, they continue to try to justify their ignorance.
    It DOES work cutting one down. if you really messed up the job just get another one …. jesus!

  7. Brent Jardin says

    Location = Canada. @ the apple store .ca I Just bought 2 iphones unlocked – the U.S. site you cannot untill the 21st of Sept?Why i dont know?,Brent ,Nanoo ,Nanoo

  8. Aakash says

    hw come we can get the iphone 5 in canada and not in USA??
    I too need to buy an iphone 5 factory unlocked..
    pls help!!

  9. Sarper Sarıdal says

    “traditional micro sim card” what a tradition.. lol :) so the normal sim cards became legendary.. you can slice it to fit to your phone. just because you are going to earn more money don make people get afraid booooo.. :) we are frightened..

  10. Shaun Turner says

    Cut my Virgin uk sim today which was cut down from original size sim last year and now cut down to nano sim. Had to cut through metal chip on corner cut end about 2mm, phone is working and all good to go hope this helps.

  11. john jacob jingleheimer smith says

    what a bunch of puss you guys are sitting behind a monitor. Pick up a iphone 5 and cut your sim down to nano and load in all the APN setting. I am using a iphone 5 on straight talk and trimmed down the micro sim. No need to shave thickness and just line up the horizontal and center lines. You editor fools are dumb fcuks

  12. Mobile Me says

    So this article by Josh Smith has been proven wrong, the man had no idea what he was talking about and was spreading false rumors. The least he can do now is apologize for misinforming everyone that read his article. This site has lost whatever credibility it thought it had.

  13. Dirk says

    Hmmm… so it DOES work, at least for some. Good. However, should you try this, just make sure that, after you put in the cut sim, that the tray can in fact COME OUT again as easily as it went in. How many have tested that? You don’t want a stuck home-cut sim in there… Apple may not cover the warranty.

    I know it seems like I’m being a wet blanket but I just want people to consider ALL aspects of this.

  14. Bee says

    Yes it’s bogus! I cut my wife’s micro sim from her IPhone 4 to fit the iPhone 5 and used the old sim as an adapter for the nano sim back into the iPhone 4. It works fine and I did all of it using an razer blade.

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