How to Insert SIM Card in an iPhone

The newest iPhone models use nano-SIM cards, the smallest of the three major SIM card types. If you have an older phone you may need to get a new SIM card from your carrier to fit in your iPhone. 

The good news is, inserting a nano-SIM card into an iPhone is really easy. So grab your SIM card, iPhone, and the SIM tool that came with your phone, and we’ll walk you through the simple steps on how to insert SIM card in an iphone. In less than 5 minutes, your iPhone will be activated and ready to use. Let’s get started.

How to Insert SIM Card in an iPhone

What You’ll Need to Insert a SIM Card in an iPhone 

To insert a SIM card in your iPhone, you’ll need a few essential items.

The Nano-SIM Card 

First, you’ll need a SIM card. SIM cards contain your phone number and carrier information to connect your iPhone to a mobile network. You can get a SIM card from your carrier when you sign up for a phone plan or buy an unlocked iPhone.

The SIM Card Tray Removal Tool

iPhones have a SIM card tray that holds the SIM card in place. To access the tray, you’ll need the SIM card tray removal tool that came with your iPhone. It’s a really small and light pin that can be inserted into the tiny hole on either side of an iPhone. If you’ve misplaced the tool, you can use a small paper clip instead.


Inserting a SIM card only takes a few minutes but requires patience and a steady hand. Make sure you have adequate time to fully insert the SIM card tray to avoid any damage to your iPhone.

SIM Card Adapter (Optional)

If you have an older iPhone model, like an iPhone 4 or 5, you may need a SIM card adapter to fit your new SIM card. Newer SIM cards are smaller in size, so an adapter makes them compatible with the older iPhone models. Check with your carrier to see if your new SIM card requires an adapter.

With these essentials in hand, we can now look at the steps on how to insert SIM card in an iPhone. Take it slow, follow the steps carefully, and your iPhone will be connected to your carrier’s network in no time. 

How to Insert SIM Card in an iPhone

Step by Step Guide on How to Insert SIM Card in an iPhone 

Step 1: Locate the SIM card tray

The SIM card tray is a small slot on the side of your iPhone. Certain iPhone series like the 13 models have them on the left.

On the iPhone 6s and newer, including the iPhone 7, 8, and X models, the SIM card tray is located on the right side of the phone, slightly above the power button. It’s a small slot with a hole in the middle – that’s your SIM card tray.

For the iPhone 5s and iPhone SE, the SIM card tray is also on the right side of the phone, but slightly lower down, about a quarter of the way up from the bottom of the phone. The tray will have a pinhole that you use to eject the tray.

Step 2: Eject the SIM card tray

Take the SIM eject tool that came with your iPhone and place it into the pinhole on the SIM card tray. Push gently but firmly until you see the card tray pop out. If you don’t have the tool, a small paper clip will also work. Be very careful not to bend or damage the tool or tray.

Step 3: Place SIM card into the ejected tray

Hold your SIM card so that the metal contacts are facing downwards. The angled corner of the card should align with the angled corner of the tray. Gently slide the card into the tray until you notice that it has clicked into place.

Step 4: Insert SIM card tray back into iPhone

Slide the SIM card tray back into the slot on the side of your iPhone. Push firmly until the tray is fully inserted and level with the edge of the iPhone. Now this is how to insert SIM card in an iPhone.

Step 5: Set up your iPhone

Now that your SIM card is inserted, you’re ready to set up your iPhone. Turn on your iPhone by holding down the side button. Follow the onscreen prompts to choose a language, connect to Wi-Fi, sign in with or create an Apple ID, and set up device security. Your iPhone will now detect your SIM card and carrier settings will be installed automatically.

Once setup is complete, you can start making calls, sending texts, accessing the internet and enjoying all the great features of your new iPhone! 

Troubleshooting Common SIM Card Insertion Issues

Having issues inserting your SIM card into your new iPhone? Don’t worry, there are a few common problems that are easy to fix. Here are some troubleshooting tips to try:

  • SIM card not detected

If your iPhone isn’t recognizing the SIM card at all, first check to see if the card is inserted correctly with the gold contacts facing downwards. If it isn’t, then gently adjust the SIM card into place until it clicks.

Next, check for damages or see if your SIM card has expired. If it’s visibly cracked or hasn’t been used in over a year, you’ll need to get a replacement from your carrier. Also ensure your iPhone model is compatible with your carrier’s network and SIM card type. If needed, you can get a new nano-SIM to replace an older micro-SIM or mini-SIM.

Finally, restart your iPhone to refresh the SIM card detection. Press and hold the power and volume buttons together until the “slide to power off” option appears. Slide to power off, wait 30 seconds, then power back on. This reset often fixes software glitches that could be preventing SIM card recognition.

  • SIM card not working

If your iPhone detects the SIM but calls, texts and data aren’t working, first try removing your SIM card for a minute and reinserting it to make sure it’s properly connected. You should also check for any carrier outages in your area. Major mobile networks do routine maintenance that can temporarily disrupt service.

As a last resort, you may need to reset your iPhone’s network settings. Go to Settings → General → Reset → Reset Network Settings. This will reset Wi-Fi passwords and cellular settings, but not erase any of your personal data or apps. Once reset, power cycle your iPhone again and the SIM should be working properly.

If none of these steps resolve your SIM card issues, you’ll need to contact your wireless carrier’s support for further help. They can troubleshoot from their end or determine if a replacement SIM or iPhone is needed.


This covers all the basic things you need to know on how to insert SIM card in an iPhone. If for some reason your iPhone is not recognizing the SIM card, try powering it off and back on again. If that doesn’t work, you may need to reset your network settings. But in most cases, following the steps in this guide should have you up and running in no time. So happy calling, texting, surfing the web, and enjoying all the amazing features of your iPhone!