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Implications of IP-enabled SIM cards for Mobile Network Operators
For further information please contact:

Uwe Herzog
Programme Manager
Wieblinger Weg 19/4
69123 Heidelberg, Germany

Project Information
What is this Project about?

Recent trends in SIM card technologies such as high speed protocol (USB), Smart Card Web Server (SCWS) and Java Card 3.0 facilitate IP-enabled SIM cards (i.e. SIM card supporting TCP/IP protocol suite). The introduction of embeddable Web applications having access to secure IP connectivity (TCP/IP + HTTP(S)) over high-speed protocol (USB) opens new possibilities for Mobile Network operators. Further, Java Card 3.0 offers a secure environment with multithreading, TCP/IP network connectivity and an embedded web server on the SIM card.
Based on these features, Mobile Network Operators will have new possibilities of offering services to end-users based on enhanced communication between the mobile terminal, the SIM card and an IP-based network. For example local applications could be enriched with online content, and online applications can be personalized with local content in a secure manner. Furthermore, Smart Card Web Server as well as Java Card 3.0 services offer a much richer user interface towards the mobile terminal.
It is essential for Mobile Network Operators to know and understand how IP-enabled SIM cards make it possible to offer new services, limitations imposed by terminals, and how business opportunities are affected. Mobile Network Operators also need to consider barriers and drivers for introducing IP-enabled SIM cards.

What are the main objectives of this Project?

The objectives of this study are:

  • Provide an overview of the state-of-the-art for next generation IP-enabled SIM cards (i.e. supporting TCP/IP protocol suite).
  • Investigate current trends in the SIM and handset market.
  • Evaluate implications that IP-enabled SIM cards will have on Mobile Network Operators.
  • Identify new services and domains.
  • Discuss possible business opportunities and roles for MNOs.
  • Recognise barriers and driver for introducing IP-enabled SIM cards.
  • Sketch example scenarios enabled by SIM cards offering IP support.


Project Results
Deliverable Title  No Issue date
State of the art and market trends for IP-enabled SIM cards D1 April 2009 
Opportunities from IP enabled SIM cards for MNOs  D2 May 2009
Service examples for IP-SIM cards, technological design descriptions, and use-case scenarios TI1 May 2009
Implications of IP-enabled SIM cards for Mobile Network Operators (Summary presentation) D3 May 2009