Report: European standards group picks Apple's nano-SIM design

According to a report from IDG News Service, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute selected Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) design for the industry-standard nano-SIM card.

The report, citing SIM-card maker Giesecke & Devrient, said the ETSI picked Apple's proposal over a rival one put forward by Nokia (NYSE:NOK), Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) and Motorola Mobility (NYSE:MMI), which is now owned by Google (NASDAQ:GOOG). On Friday the ETSI had confirmed that it had chosen a new standard, but did not provide details on the winning proposal.

The ETSI chose what is known as the "fourth form factor (4FF)," which is 40 percent smaller than the current smallest SIM card design, according to ETSI. Nano-SIM cards will free up room inside devices for additional memory, larger batteries and other components, and will ultimately help OEMS deliver thinner devices.

In late March, a vote by the ETSI on the topic was delayed by disagreements between Apple and Nokia, RIM and Motorola. Nokia had blasted Apple's proposal, arguing Apple was misusing the standardization process. Nokia had vowed not to license its essential patents to Apple if Apple's proposal won out.

In what may be a telling statement about which proposal won the ETSI vote, Nokia said the selected standard is "technically inferior and not suitable for a number of applications", but said "the ETSI Smart Card Platform Technical Committee has now made its decision."

Added Nokia: "As Nokia believes that ETSI has taken steps to address Nokia's original concerns over the standardization process, we have advised ETSI that we are prepared to license any Nokia patents which are essential to implement the standard, on [fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory] terms."

For more:
- see this IDG News Service article
- see this FT article
- see this Bloomberg article

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