Smartphones That Use SIM Cards

By Alexander Poirier

The iPhone on the AT&T network uses a SIM card, but the Verizon iPhone does not.
i Joe Raedle/Getty Images News/Getty Images

According to PC Mag, a smartphone is "a cellular telephone with built-in applications and Internet access." By this definition, many cell phones on the market as of March, 2011, is a smartphone. Not all smartphones use SIM cards, but the ones that do differ depending on the carrier, manufacturer and operating system used.

Smartphone Carriers

The primary factor that determines whether or not a smartphone will use a SIM card is the carrier or, more specifically, the type of technology the carrier's network uses. Cell phone carriers that use GSM technology use SIM cards, while cell phone carriers that use CDMA technology do not. In the United States, AT&T and T-Mobile are the two largest GSM networks, so any smartphone bought for use with one of these networks will use a SIM card.

Smartphone Manufacturers

There are dozens of companies that manufacture GSM smartphones. According to research conducted by the International Data Corporation in May, 2010, the top five smartphone manufacturers are Nokia, Research in Motion, Apple, HTC and Motorola. Each one of these companies manufactures smartphones that are designed to be used on a GSM network meaning that each company manufactures a smartphone that uses a SIM card.

Smartphone Operating Systems

Smartphones that use SIM cards also vary depending on the operating system the phone uses. According to research conducted by the research firm Brain Maven, the most popular smartphone operating systems in the United States are the BlackBerry, iOS, Android, Windows Mobile, Palm and Symbian operating systems. All of these operating systems are available on GSM networks, meaning that consumers are not limited by operating system when choosing a smartphone that uses a SIM card.

Example Smartphones

Some example smartphones that use SIM cards are the AT&T version of the iPhone 4, the HD7, the Atrix and the Torch. The iPhone is manufactured by Apple, runs on the iOS operating system and is available on AT&T's GSM network as well as Verizon's network (the Verizon iPhone does not use a SIM card). The HD7 is manufactured by HTC, runs on the Windows Mobile operating system and is available on T-Mobile's GSM network. The Atrix is manufactured by Motorola, runs on the Android operating system and is available on AT&T's GSM network. The Torch is manufactured by Research in Motion, runs on the BlackBerry operating system and is available on AT&T's GSM network. For more information, navigate to the "GSM Arena: Home" page (see "Resources"), click on the manufacturer you are interested in, place a check mark next to the "GSM" band and click the "Smartphone" filter. The resulting phones will be smartphones from that manufacturer that use a SIM card.