5 alternatives to a SIM eject tool for easy SIM removal

By , Jun 2, 2016

SIM Eject Tool Alternatives

SIM eject tools are really useful for getting SIM cards out of iPhones and iPads, and honestly, I would recommend everyone who owns one of these devices carry at least one of them at all times, whether in your wallet or on a key ring.

Of course, there are always those times when you’re out and about and you don’t have a SIM eject tool on your person when you really need one. So what alternatives can you use instead?

In this piece, we’ll talk about five alternatives to a SIM eject tool that you can use to get the SIM card out of your iPhone or iPad.

Using alternatives to get your SIM card out

Because your SIM card is essential to your iPhone or iPad’s cellular service, it’s not uncommon for someone to want to remove and re-seat it when they’re having cellular problems with their device.

It’s also very common for those who travel a lot to swap SIM cards when they go out of town, or even out of country, so they can avoid roaming charges on their current carrier.

When you’re out and about, hopefully you have a SIM eject tool on your person. These can be had on Amazon in 10 packs or more for as little as a buck, but for those unlucky times where you don’t, and you need one, you can use the following alternatives:

1. Paperclip

paperclip as a SIM eject tool

In many situations, a paperclip makes a viable alternative to a SIM eject tool. This is my most common go-to when I forget my SIM eject tool, or lose all of the ones I have throughout my daily clumsiness.

To use a paperclip as a SIM eject tool, it must be stripped down to bare metal. Those fancy colored ones with the plastic coating will be too thick, but you can remove a chunk of it to get to the bare metal with a knife or scissors.

Afterwards, just bend one of the sides out so you have a piece of metal small enough to jam into the SIM tray eject hole, as shown above. Now you can insert it and press to eject your SIM card from your iPhone or iPad.

Optionally, you can bend the paperclip back and return it to its duties of holding pieces of paper together once you’re finished.

2. Staple

staple as a SIM eject tool

In some scenarios, a paperclip can be a little difficult to come across, but most offices and businesses have staplers, so try asking to borrow a single staple.

You can use the thin metal prong on a single staple to force the SIM tray on an iPhone or iPad open when you forget your SIM eject tool.

I’ve only ever used a staple once, and it was relatively easy, but depending on the brand of staples, I have heard some are more malleable than others and may be more difficult to use, especially if your SIM tray is tight and doesn’t like to come out without a fight.

Nevertheless, when you don’t have any options, you may want to give this alternative a try!

3) Sewing Pin

sewing pin as a SIM eject tool

If you’re anywhere near your mother’s or grandma’s house, you might be able to mooch a sewing pin from one of them to open your SIM tray on your iPhone or iPad.

That’s not to say all mothers and grandmothers out there are into sewing, but there’s a pretty good chance they have some sewing equipment stowed away in their closet somewhere that could get the job done.

Honestly, you could use either a sewing needle or a sewing pin, but I recommend a pin because they usually have a round tip, as shown above, which makes pressing it into the SIM tray with your finger a lot easier on the tip of your finger. The blunter surface of a sewing pin won’t hurt as much as the pinpoint surface of a sewing needle will (trust me; been there, done that).

If there are none of these in a five-mile radius, move on to something else.

4) Toothpick

toothpick as a SIM eject tool

With some success, I’ve also used toothpicks to get SIM cards out of the SIM trays of some of my iPhones.

These are widely available at a variety of restaurants, and some people even carry them on their person. If you carry a Swiss-Army knife on you, then you already have a plastic toothpick and may not even know it.

When you’re out and about, and you’re stuck in public and are a far drive from home, a toothpick is often a great go-to because restaurants are everywhere.

Be careful however, as some toothpicks aren’t as thin at the tip as others, and may not fit into the SIM eject tray. Forcing a toothpick that is too large into the SIM eject hole could cause the tip to break off, and you’d have to use a sewing needle or something similar to fish it out.

5) Earring

earring as a SIM eject tool

In the absolute worst-case scenario, you can break out the jewelery.

Lots of women already have earrings on their person, but when you’re desperate to get your SIM card out, the needle end of an earring can work wonders.

This won’t work with all styles of earrings, such as gauges, but for those that have a small enough pin in them to be used as a SIM eject tool, the metal is typically hard enough to be used without bending and can be useful in a pinch.

I would recommend using inexpensive jewelry only, as you won’t want to risk damaging expensive jewelry, but hey, desperate times call for desperate measures.

Wrapping up

Hopefully you’ve been able to get your SIM card tray opened on your iPhone or iPad by now even though you’re missing your SIM eject tool. Fortunately, there are a lot of alternatives out there.

If you never did get a SIM eject tool, you should seriously consider investing in one, because like we noted earlier, it’s only about a dollar for a set of ten of them on Amazon, and you can get some sweet bundle deals on even more of them with no problem. Keep on eon your key ring and keep them all over the place so you have easy access to your SIM card no matter where you are.

What do you use to open your SIM tray when your SIM eject tool isn’t around? Share in the comments!

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  • Tim

    Earring is the most accessible, almost every girl has it.

    • Impreza

      And Pirate. Arghhhh

  • lookHOWMADheis

    i feel like iDB is slowly dying…..

    • Vic O

      Slowly but surely.

      • Rave Farid

        sure it is without jailbreak related news it’s so boring with “how to ” articles

    • JustCause

      All the iDevice sites are. I remember when that lame ass modmyi site used to be popular, now there is barely any active members online over there anymore.

      Kinda hard to run a website based off a company that is hardly innovative anymore.

      • Toukale

        Look, someone who’s mistaken “activity for achievement.”

      • Impreza

        The only thing that makes a site lame ass is the quality of its writers. Sadly there are very few of them around it seems that aren’t full of their own self importance or just plain trucking useless.

      • JustCause

        I agree, but even with writers, there still isn’t anything for them to write about seeing as how crApple isn’t doing anything besides resizing and recycling old products these days. Kinda hard to keep talking about the same shit over and over and over again.

        Hell even the fanboys have run outa things to cheer about lol.

    • Jayy

      What are they supposed to do when there isn’t any new news then? Every Apple based blog site is like this! Every year around this time. It’s just like in sales there are certain months where everything is slow every year.

      • lookHOWMADheis

        I mean switch it up, they don’t have hacking on this site, yet they teach you how to jailbreak. The people need more and teaching me how to eject my SIM is not of use to me!

      • I’m sorry it’s not of use to you. I hope somebody on the internet finds it useful.

      • Impreza

        Seriously Anthony lokhowmadheis has s point. The only person who would find this information useful wouldn’t and couldn’t be an iDB reader. Unless of course iDB has attracted readership from the school of mentally challenged and just plain dumb ass. Is that how you view the readers to your articles? Careful how you answer that question Anthony.
        What you could have done was explain how a sim eject tool could unpick a lock or a set of handcuffs. That is what your iDB readers would have found interesting during these lull times in tech reporting. Think about it. 🙂

      • That’s narrow-minded. Someone out there will stumble upon this in the future who isn’t at iDB now, but will be in the future.

        Also for the record, you, not me, are the only one calling people mentally challenged for looking up tips online. So please don’t put those words in my mouth and then claim I am the one stating them. Thanks.

      • JustCause

        Well on the bright side of things at least you managed to find your way onto a better site instead of FagMyi. =)

      • lookHOWMADheis
      • Shadowelite123

        This isn’t just for Apple based blogs. There are plenty of other site that are based on other companies that are the same way. Whether it pertains to android, Windows, etc.

    • f1ght3r

      They need Jeff Benjamin back. He WAS iDB.

      • Yujin

        Haha. Yes. He was very informative, but now at 9to5mac although he ain’t doing much there as far as I can tell.

      • Jerry

        yeah at 9to5mac his articles don’t excel like they did here I feel like they get lost with everyone else’s. He needs to come back.

      • Gadget Guru

        Wait they don’t have Jeff anymore? It all makes sense now

      • Jerry

        He’s been gone for a while now

      • JustCause

        That guy did so much shit on here I always thought that he owned this site. No wonder it isn’t poppin’ as much as it used to be.

  • Anthony

    Is this a serious article?

    • lookHOWMADheis


      • JustCause

        Hell yes it’s serious! Next week we’re gonna learn about all the ways to plug a lightning connector into our devices. So you better stay tuned! =)

  • Digitalfeind

    Earrings work the best. Pins not so much. I used a pin on a HTC and it punched a hole somewhere in the phone. After that I wouldn’t even try on an iPhone or any other phone.

  • The_Kingfish

    I miss the days when Apple used to pack one of these in with every iPhone, attached to the “Getting Started” folder. I think they stopped around the time of the iPhone 4 or 4S. The one I got with my 3GS came in very handy. I remember using the handle of an X-Acto knife and inserting the removal tool in it like a blade. Now they’re too cheap to include this .10 cent piece of metal in the package.

    • Shadowelite123

      They did? Must have been before the iPhone 4S because I never had one with mine

      • JustCause

        Yeah I believe the iPhone 4 was the last device that they used to include them.

      • I’ve seen them in international models that come unlocked. Not something you see often anymore for sure.