Fixing iPhone 4 “No-Sim Installed” Problem

We recently bought several iPhones 4 for our company employees in order to show how much we value them (this is true, guys!).

However, after using the new phones for a while we encountered a problem that some of them could not see the sim-card installed in them. The thing is that the SIM cards used by the new iPhones are smaller than those used in previous models. The new format is called “micro-sim” and the SIM cards seem to be at least one third smaller than the normal sims. Micro-sims look like this:

Picture by Gizmodo (Source)

Unfortunately, to our great disappointment, at least two of the 5 iPhones we bought encountered the following problem:

We tried searching on the Internet for a solution but couldn’t find one and decided to dig into the problem ourselves (I`m sure our technicians were quite happy to do something not related to servers…).

What we discovered was what seemed to be a design problem of the mechanism ejecting the sim card tray in the new iPhones.

On the following picture you can see that when you insert a needle or a paper-clip into the tiny hole on the right, the sim card tray pops-out due to the pressure coming from the top part of the mechanism.

The problem is that the top part of the mechanism seems to have a design flaw and sometimes it touches the metal contacts on the sim card making a short circuit. As a result, the phone stops recognizing the sim.

When we found what the problem was we knew how to solve it. So here is the solution.

1.First, take some thick double sided adhesive tape and cut a small piece of it.

2. Second, stick that small piece of tape to the side of the sim tray as shown on the picture below.

3. Not put the sim card into tray and insert the tray back into the phone. Now the tape will prevent the top part of the ejecting mechanism from making a short circuit with the sim card.

So far we have been using our iPhones without a problem but it would be better if Apple recongized the problem and improved the design of the tray mechanism.

Please also note – we take no responsibilty for broken iphones whatsoever. Good luck!


P.S. One of our readers suggested another way of overcoming the problem. His solution is to put some tape on top of the SIM card as shown on the picture below. This should also prevent the short circuits but we have not tested this solution yet.


P.P.S. We still have some “special deal” servers for $20 in stock. If you are interested, do check them out!


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  1. Tried the tape on the sim card as the pic shows. Works perfectly. A 10 second fix. Much easier than trying to cut a microscopic piece of double sided tape then trying to tweezer it off my finger, stick it on the sim car tray, grab another pair of tweezers cuz the tape stuck to the first pair… just not worth the work. LoL.

  2. Good God man, do not use your macbook as a cutting board.

    the tape trick also worked for me. brilliant really, i was worried i might have to go get a new phone. Thanks!

  3. What if it’s on an iPhone 3GS? I tried the tape over the sim, but my card holder looks different… Please respond soon, this phone decides whether or not I am homeless for the next couple months….

  4. oh my god it really worked, tape idea really worked. on the very first day i used it for whole day and then started saying no sim. i applied the tape method, that was awesome man.

  5. Seems to have fixed my iPhone. Never had this problem until the last two days and now it’s working again.

  6. I’ve had my iphone for 2 yrs and this is the first time ever that i had this problem “no sim”. i used the tape method and it worked like a charm. Thank You so much for posting this.

  7. thank you so very much for taking the time to post how to fix this amazingly silly design flaw…ya’ll are great….I appreciate your kindness to post this very much

  8. thank you so much for taking the time to post how to fix this silly design flaw. ya’ll are the best!!

  9. thank you guys I had the same problem this morning and applied your advices and it’s worked finally. oufff

  10. I was receiving message “SIM card has sent a text message” multiple times and then the “No sim card installed”. Method with the tape helped. Thanks a lot! 🙂

  11. I have an iPhone and a micro tmobile sim. I’ve tried the tape method and also the one suggested by one of your readers. Both did not work:/ help??

  12. Didnt work with me , I v been using my sim for over a year with this phone. Now suddenly say ‘ no sim ‘ ????? Please help :((

  13. Best explanation I could find online as to what the tape idea was all about. Thank you for the description with pictures. It made a lot of sense that it’s simply a mechanical problem. I had dropped my phone recently and I think it probably moved the ejection parts a tiny bit to short out the connection. The double sided thick tape aka scrapbook foam square didn’t work, but the tape did.

  14. Just bought this i_phone 4 2 days ago…I realize the problem and the easy solution, BUT if it happens to me once more, this BRAND new Phone is goinn back to Apple, I’m not here to fix their idiotic flaws….

    Thanks for the imput Folks, greatly appreciatted !!!!

  15. I experience the “No sim card installed” this morning! I was so frustrated. After searching for solutions online, i chance upon this website and OH MY GOD! IT WORKED!!!! Blessed the guy who discovered this solution!! he’s such a genius!! THANK YOU!

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  17. Thank you for sharing your experience. This worked! I was going to have to purchase new phone in the morning, but thought i’d see if the community had the same experience or suggestions. I’m so happy with the result.

  18. Tape worked on my 4S! Thanks for the tip! Not amused that a $700 phone needs us to troubleshoot and fix the problem with tape… shame on Apple for not fixing this.

  19. Hi guys, I tried the tape thing and so far it works. I use the iphone a lot, and sometimes when I get up in the morning the phone shows the same message “no sim card”. I just have to do a soft reset and then it seems to work perfect during the day. I think it is a small price to pay (resetting it daily), due here in Mexico my carrier (Telcel) has no idea of what the problem is, and first they make sure your warranty gets voided by telling you the sensors are pink and the iphone got wet (BIG LIE). They just re-installed the software and changed the sim card, obviously that didn´t work. I am dissapointed due I love apple products but this stupid error had me going nuts until I found your simple solution. Thanks guys!

  20. I have tried your method andit superbly works and i have innovate a new method from yours and it says that your MICRO SIM sections should not touch the sim tray metal in any way but it could only be possible if you have three section sim like in the pictures above try it may be it help you 🙂

  21. I have the “no sim” problem and I tried opening the side slot but it wouldn’t open for me. I pushed a pin in but it didn’t pop out like it said it would. HELP!

  22. right on! Works like a charm. After all the problems i encounter with my iphone i will soon ba able to work for apple 🙂

  23. Happened to me today. I tried to pop out the side, but didn’t have more than a pen tip. I just popped the sim holder back in and the phone is working. At least now I know what to try if it happens again! Thanks!

  24. Tape over the sim card worked brilliantly. Interestingly error only happened 48 hours after iPhone suffered a nasty fall (back panel brok and subsequently replaced in that time).