You’re at the end of a mobile contract and your iPhone has been paid off. Or maybe you’ve just bought the latest iPhone outright. Now what?
You need a SIM card (and therefore a SIM deal) to slot into your lovely Apple handset. But what SIM deal should you go for? And which type of SIM card will fit your phone? Read on to find out more.
Which type of SIM cards fit into iPhones?
Trying to work out which type of SIM card would fit your iPhone used to be a confusing business - you had Micro SIM, Nano SIM and then plain old regular Standard SIM to choose from.
These days it’s a lot simpler. If you have an iPhone 5 or newer you need a Nano SIM card. Most people fall into this bracket, but for those of you clinging on for dear life to your iPhone 4, you’ll need a Micro SIM.
And going back even further, if you’re holding an iPhone 3GS or older, you’ll need a Standard SIM... and maybe a new phone.
What is the best SIM-only deal for my iPhone?
- Type of iPhone - if you’re lucky enough to have, say, an iPhone X or newer, you’ll need a decent amount of data to get the best out of these handsets.
- Monthly allowance - consider how you use your iPhone. To watch a few vids on its HD screen or stream music with your new AirPods, we’d recommend a plan with 5GB data and above. Do you make lots of calls and need unlimited minutes? Are you a serial texter?
- SIM plan length - you can choose between a one-month or 12-month SIM deal. A one-month plan gives you more flexibility as you can switch tariffs every 30 days, whereas 12-month plans tend to work out cheaper.
- Networks - look at what each network can offer in the ways of perks and extras. With EE, for instance, you get the fastest 4G around, plus a few months of free BT Sport and Apple Music; O2 gives you priority access to tickets for events and shows; and Three offers Feel At Home plans that let you use your allowance abroad. You should also consider which network provides the best coverage and the best customer service.
Can I get a SIM-only deal with unlimited data for my iPhone?
While you won’t find many networks offering SIM deals with unlimited data, there are plenty of big data SIM deals available.
The way we see it, even if you’re a compulsive gamer, a social media addict and download a huge amount of music and video to your phone each month, you’ll still get by on a data allowance of 20GB or so. The question is: do you really need unlimited data?
You may find a high data plan will do you just fine. Though you won’t find many one-month SIM plans that offer more than 50GB.
What’s the difference between a one-month and 12-month SIM deal?
A one-month (30 day rolling contract) SIM deal gives you excellent flexibility because of its shorter length. You can change your plan every month - whether that’s with the same network, or you’d prefer to switch to a different provider, and there are some great deals available.
Some of the budget mobile networks, such as giffgaff and iD Mobile, don’t offer 12-month SIM deals, but do provide excellent value one-month deals. Other networks don’t offer one-month SIM deals, but include good perks such as O2 and, if you’re an existing customer, Sky Mobile.
It’s worth looking across all mobile networks and comparing what they offer against your needs before deciding on a one-month or 12-month SIM plan.
You could also trade in your current smartphone and put the money towards one of the newer models. It's a quick and easy process with CompareMyMobile.com. Depending on what model you have, and how intact it is, you’ll be surprised at what you can get.
Pay-as-you-go SIM-only deals
If a long-term mobile contract doesn't appeal, you can always go for a Pay As You Go (PAYG) SIM deal - a great option if you want to keep your old handset.
Best handset deals
If you're looking to upgrade your phone, we have a huge number of handset deals to compare. Whatever kind of plan you're looking for, we're here to help you find it.