How the Dual SIM of iPhone XS and XS Max works


It is one of the great novelties of the iPhone XS and XS Max. Finally, after many years with rumors about it. Apple has launched its iPhone with the Dual SIM option, although it does it in a different way than other brands. Instead of a double tray to place two cards, it chooses only a physical card (nanoSIM as usual) and an eSIM.

iphone x

What is an eSIM? How can we have two numbers on our phone? How can we go from one number to another? What functions can we use with each number? We give you all the details you need to know below. Just follow the complete and know the complete working details of the iPhone Dual Sim Story.

What is an eSIM?

We all know the SIM card of our mobile, which has been reducing the size to the current nanoSIM that almost all smartphones on the market already have. In its desire to further reduce the size of the devices, the industry has made the leap to the eSIM. Which is nothing more than the chip of the SIM without other ornaments and soldier in the terminal, with no possibility of changing. This greatly reduces the space occupied by not needing a tray or Pius to read the chip, because it is all integrated into the device.

These iPhone are not the first phones to have eSIM. As always happens, but since they have it. We are going to hear a lot more about this technology and the operators will be able to adapt to it. Because until now it was something almost anecdotal limited to a couple of compatible devices. In fact, Vodafone and Orange have already announced the compatibility in Spain and in other countries. Many operators have also taken the step towards this technology.

Advantages of the eSIM

In addition to reducing the size and eliminating mobile parts inside a smartphone. Which is always good for sealing the device. The eSIM has many other advantages, among which the possibility of changing from one number to another without the need to extract any card. Only from the settings of our device. This means that you can have several lines configured in your terminal and use the one that best suits you. In each case, because changing from one to another is a matter of seconds.

It also facilitates the odds, not needing to get the SIM card of your new operator. The changes may be instantaneous, without staying several hours (or days) without a phone because the new line has not yet been activated. They are just two examples of the many we could put, because the eSIM only has advantages for the user, and finally it seems that it is here to stay.

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An iPhone Dual SIM

Apple has presented its new iPhone and one of its novelties was precisely this. Until now Dual SIM phones had two trays (or a double) to place the two physical cards. Some allow you to use the two lines for voice. Others only one for voice and another for data or only one line had to change manually from one to another. Apple has opted for just one physical nanoSIM with its always tray and an eSIM. If you do not plan to use the eSIM, you will not notice anything new, because everything is as before.

What can you do, Just thanks to this new function? You can have two phone lines on your iPhone, one for personal calls and another for work calls. The dream of many is finally fulfilled and they will not have to carry two phones on top of them anymore. Or you can have one line for voice and the other for data, taking advantage of the best rates on the market or the one that more offers you. You will no longer be tied to an expensive voice rate because it gives you a lot of data to spend. You can change to a data rate or local voice when you go abroad, without giving up your usual number.

What do I need to use the eSIM on the iPhone

The first thing you need is: in addition to your iPhone XS or XS Max, is that your operator is compatible. They will be because you can not still hire that product. This eSIM service has a price that will vary depending on the rate you have contracted. But in summary, we can say that the most expensive rates include a free eSIM number and the other rates have a price.

At the moment it is not possible to contract only the eSIM. You must have a “conventional” line with your physical Sim. And what you get are additional lines with eSIM using that same number that you can configure on your devices. For you to understand, if you want to use your line of work on your personal iPhone. You must hire the eSIM in the line of work. Leave the SIM at home and configure the eSIM on your iPhone. Which will also have the personal SIM inserted in its tray.

In addition to this, you will need the application of your installed operator on your iPhone or a QR code that your operator will provide you.

  • Go to “Settings> Mobile data> Add mobile data plan” and
  • The QR code that your provider has given you is scarce.
  • To activate it, it may be necessary to open your operator’s application on your iPhone.
  • In this way, you can add as many plans as you want through eSIM, but you can only use one of them. having to manually change to another from these same settings.


As the last step, you must name each line so you can identify each time you want to change and choose which one you want your line to be by default. What use you want to give to the other line. You must take into account that both mobile lines can receive and make calls, SMS and MMS simultaneously. But only one of them can be used as a data network. So the options that Apple gives you are:

  • Use one line as the main network with all the functions and the second one only for phone and SMS
  • Use one line as the main network for calls and SMS and the other only as a data network.

From what number will I make the calls

Assuming you have configured the two lines for calls and SMS, from what number will you make the calls? You will not have to change the line every two times. Since when you call a contact you will always use the line you used for the last time with that contact. If you have never called it, it will use the line you have configured as the main network.


You can change in each contact the number from which you want to call it, or from the phone application itself. Now you can select a line different from the one used by default. You can also do it from the Messages application to send a message from a different number to the one that has selected the iPhone by default.

In the case of iMessage and FaceTime, you will not be able to use both lines simultaneously. So from the device settings, you must choose which one you want to use with these Apple services. If you do not want to keep the one selected by default.

How will I receive calls?

If you have configured the two lines for calls, you can receive them in any of the two numbers without having to do anything. You will not have to change from one to another. Of course, if you are occupying a line with a call and you are called to the other line. It will go directly to the voicemail, but you will not be notified of any missed calls in that second number. A detail that you must take into account.

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What happens with mobile data?

You can only use a mobile data line even if the two lines you have configured have them. If you want to change which line you are using for mobile data you can

  • go to “Settings> Mobile data” and
  • Choose which number you want to use for this function.

Dual Sim of iPhone

The same if you want to configure any option within the device settings. You should also know that if you are receiving a call in the number that does not have active mobile data. You will have your iPhone without internet during that call since the other number will be “deactivated” during that time.

How do I see the coverage available

If you look at the images in this article you will see that on the right at the top. The coverage appears with two icons: the classic ascending bar and a dotted line just below. In this way, you will know the coverage of each of the two lines. If you want to see more details, you can deploy the Control Center and at the top left. You will see the coverage bars with the name of the two operators you are using, even if they are the same.


The iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR, the most affordable model that Apple has launched but will take a little longer. These have this possibility of using Dual SIM through eSIM. We assume that the operation will be the same, but this guide is based on the Apple information and only refers to the XS and XS Max. So we will wait to have more information before including the XR in this article. If you have any doubts please ask them in the comment section. We will help you out. Keep visiting our site for more information.


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