Right now we have single SIM smartphones and dual-SIM smartphones being sold in the market. Single-SIM devices are more common in the US as people would rather carry two phones rather have one single device handling two networks. In emerging markets and other parts of the world a dual-SIM device is popular since it can let a person stay connected in two networks without having to buy another phone.
Right now LG and Mediatek have announced that they have partnered together to bring a triple-Sim smartphone. This is in response to the high demand for multi-SIM devices in emerging markets. The triple-SIM device will be able to use three SIMs simultaneously and allows users to make calls, send messages, and transmit data using three different numbers.
According to Brian Kwon, Head of Product Planning Group from LG Electronics, “MediaTek has long provided state-of-art solutions for multi-SIM mobile devices. 3G triple-SIM is yet another example of that. Thanks to its groundbreaking technology, our new smartphones will significantly expand the connectivity options of our customers, and in so doing allow them to take advantage of multiple tariff plans.”
Jeffrey Ju, GM of MediaTek’s Smartphone Business Unit, says that “In many emerging markets, multi-SIM support has become an absolute requirement. By creating a comprehensive total solution packed with premium features and advanced technologies, MediaTek is not only catering to end-user needs, but also attracting the attention of the world’s tier-one device makers. With our long line of exciting new products in the works, we expect to bring many more affordable-premium mobile device solutions to emerging markets and others in the near future.”
What makes multi-SIM devices popular? In other parts of the world various network providers have different rates. One network may have a cheaper text messaging rate but have a high call rate. A person can then use one network to send a message while using the other to make calls. Another reason is that if one network has no reception in a particular area but another network has coverage then using a multi-SIM device is advantageous. Probably the best reason why it has become popular is that it is cheaper when compared to getting an extra phone.