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How Do I Choose the Best SIM Card Reader?

A phone that uses a SIM card.
Some sim cards are packaged inside of a larger card in order to protect them from damage before use.
SIM card.
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  • Written By: Alex Newth
  • Edited By: Angela B.
  • Last Modified Date: 10 August 2014
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A subscriber identity module (SIM) card is capable of holding computer memory, but a computer can only access this memory if a SIM card reader is used. There are many types of SIM cards, so the best SIM card reader should be able to read many types of SIM cards; if not, it at least should be able to read your specific card type. The size of the card reader also may be important, because larger readers may be too large to be mobile. Security can be an issue, because hackers can access a SIM card as you are accessing it, so a reader should have security protocols. Speed also is commonly determined by the reader, so a fast reader may be preferred.

There are many different types of SIM cards, and a SIM card reader may be limited in what types of cards it can read. It normally is best to get a card reader that can work with many formats, but this type of reader can be larger and more expensive than desired. You can avoid the size issue and expense by getting a smaller reader that can only read your specific type of SIM card.

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Depending on how the SIM card reader is manufactured, the reader may be small or large. The two sizes usually have the same amount of speed and power, but size still can affect how easy it is to use the reader. For example, a large reader may not be good for compact areas or if you travel a lot. At the same time, the smaller reader may be easy to misplace.

When you access a SIM card, your computer can read the files on it. During this time, if the SIM card reader does not have any security or protection, a hacker also can read all the files on the card. To avoid this scenario, even though it is unlikely, having a reader with security features will encrypt the files to make it much harder for a hacker to access your SIM card.

A SIM card reader often determines how quickly a computer can access the card’s files. If you do not access the files much, or if the files are not very important, then average speeds should be good enough. Frequent access may be difficult with this speed, so getting a faster reader should enable you to easily move files back and forth between the computer and SIM card.

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