How to use or manage dual SIM cards

How to use or manage dual SIM cards

Depending on your smartphone it will either come with a dual SIM or single SIM tray. Dual SIM models allow you to use two SIM cards in one device. This is handy if you have separate phone numbers for work and home or if you would like to use a local number while keeping your original number active when in a foreign country. 

What type of SIM cards tray does my device have?

There are three types of SIM card trays:

  • Single SIM: 1 SIM card slot
  • Dual SIM: 2 SIM card slots
  • Hybrid SIM: 1 SIM card slot and a hybrid slot

A hybrid slot can take either a second SIM card or a microSD card for expandable memory, giving you the flexibility to choose between a second SIM card or extra storage.

Find out more about how to use an SD card on your device.

To check which type of SIM card tray your device has, remove the SIM card tray and have a look. If it says SIM2 it's a dual SIM, if it says SIM2 \ microSD it's a hybrid. 

Dual SIM and Hybrid SIM are displayed

The S21, S21+ and S21 Ultra come with a new, more compact dual SIM card tray. This tray has space for one nano SIM card on the top, and another on the underside. Follow the steps below for more details on using two SIM cards with your S21.

Enable a second SIM card

By activating two SIM cards you can receive calls and messages on both cards. If you are speaking on a call using one card, the other card cannot be used to receive new calls at the same time.

1 Go to Settings, then tap Connections
Connections icon
2 Tap SIM card manager
SIM card manager is selected in the Connections menu
3 Tap the SIM card that you would like to enable
SIM 2 is selected in the SIM card manager
4 Tap the switch to activate the SIM card
Dual SIM is activated
5 Tap Name, enter the name that you would like to give that SIM card, then tap Done

For example, you may want to distinguish the name of your SIM card depending on whether it is used for work or home, or by local and non local networks. 

Dual SIM can be renamed
6 Tap Icon to change the icon, select your preference then tap OK
Icon is selected for the dual SIM
Switch between SIM cards

Once you have enabled both SIM cards, you can switch between SIM cards quickly using the quick panel, through the settings menu, or through the phone and message app.

To switch between SIM cards through the quick panel:

1 Swipe down from the top of the screen to reveal the quick panel
2 Tap Calls, Text Messages or Mobile data
Switch between SIM cards for calls, text messages and mobile data
3 Tap the SIM card you would like to switch to

To switch between SIM cards through the settings menu:

1 Open the Settings app, then tap Connections
2 Tap SIM Card Manager
3 Tap Calls, Text Messages or Mobile data
Select which SIM to use for Calls, Text messages or Mobile data
4 Tap the SIM card you would like to switch to
Select which SIM to use for Calls, Text messages or Mobile data

To switch between SIM cards through the phone or message app

In the Phone app: 

1 Type the name or number of the person you want to call and the sim card icon will appear at the bottom of the screen. Tap the icon to switch between sim cards
SIM icon selected in phone app

In the Messages app: 

1 Type the name or number of the person you want to send a message to and the sim card icon will appear in the bottom right of the screen. Tap the icon to switch between sim cards
SIM icon selected in messages app

If you're experiencing unusual behaviour on Samsung mobiles, tablets or wearables, you can send us an error report or ask us a question in the Samsung Members app.

This allows us to take a closer look at what is happening. The data is anonymised and only held for the duration of the investigation. Find out more about sending an error report through the Samsung Members app.

 

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