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I switched to eSIM on iPhone 14 Pro and am not looking back

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I switched to eSIM on iPhone 14 Pro and am not looking back
Apple iPhone 14 Pro home screen



(Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

Apple took a big risk, in the US at least, by removing the physical SIM slot for all iPhone 14 models and relying entirely on eSIM.

In my tests of three iPhones: iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max, I used the eSIM phone numbers already assigned to the phones but didn’t experience the setup – more specifically, the transition from a physical SIM to an all eSIM existence. But I couldn’t avoid it forever.

Apple’s promise is that the transition from a physical SIM slot-supported number to one, ostensibly the same one, supported on an eSIM-only device would be easy. The short story here is that, yes, the process is smooth and painless, but there are a couple of checkpoints worth heeding.

As noted, for now iPhone 14 phones in the UK and elsewhere outside the US will still have SIM slots, but the writing is on the wall. Within a generation or so, Apple will probably remove physical SIM slots from all iPhone models. My point is that you may not need this advice now, but bookmark this post for future use.

Apple iPhone 13 Pro SIM card change

Taking one last look at the iPhone 13 Pro SIM slot. You won’t be doing this with the iPhone 14 Pro (or any iPhone 14 in the US). (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

The need to transfer my current phone number, one I’ve had for over 20 years, started with my desire to fully upgrade from the iPhone 13 Pro to the iPhone 14 Pro (48MP camera, always-on display, Dynamic Island), and make it my everyday device.

It’s worth noting that my test iPhone 14 Pro already has an eSIM number and I decided to keep that number on the phone, a decision which later impacted a couple of settings I had to adjust post-transfer.

To be honest, I went into the whole thing with quite a bit of trepidation. I’ve tested dozens of phones over the years, usually popping out and sliding in different SIMS – with a SIM ejection tool or an unbent paperclip – to either move my number or keep a backup number on other test devices. I’ve upgraded my family’s phones by buying devices and then popping in their old SIM card. Even when it was time to get a new SIM for 5G support, I had Verizon ship the tiny card to me and I did the rest. Taking that physical aspect out of the equation left me feeling a bit unmoored.

eSIM process on the phone

When it’s time to transfer to eSIM. (Image credit: Future)

I started by resetting the iPhone 14 Pro (after backing up the lovely photos and videos I took with it) but noted that, during the process, I had the option of keeping the currently assigned eSIM number. Knowing a single iPhone 14 can support up to eight eSIM numbers, I decided to preserve it.

I was surprised at how quickly the iPhone 14 Pro reset; it was faster than my experiences with previous iPhone models.

The latest iPhone setup asks if you want to transfer an existing number to the new phone and then informed me that my current phone number would stop working on the iPhone 13 Pro.

I used to do a bit of diving in high school and the feeling of double pressing my iPhone 13 Pro power button to authorize the transfer of my number to eSIM on the iPhone 14 Pro was akin to the moments right before I attempted an inward, the dive where you leap up, scissor and then dive straight down, with your head passing just inches from the board. Sheer terror.

On the iPhone 14 Pro screen, I saw a message informing me that it was activating the phone and then connecting to the network, in this case, Verizon.

With no error messages to speak of, I exhaled a sigh of relief while the phone worked to transfer my iCloud settings from the iPhone 13 Pro.

As far as I could tell, the process had gone off without a hitch. There was, though, some mop-up to perform.

Because I’d kept the original eSIM, the iPhone 14 Pro initially named both numbers Primary, and I didn’t realize that the phone still didn’t know which number to use first.

A bit later, I called my brother on the iPhone 14 Pro. He didn’t pick up. However, a few minutes later, my iPhone rang and it was my brother who told me that when I initially called, he saw an unknown number and ignored it. He soon realized, based on the California area code, that it might be his gadget-crazed brother testing another device.

With multiple eSIMs, your iPhone 14 won’t know which number to use until you tell it.

There are a few steps I had to take to fix this. First, I needed to rename the lines. The preset options include:

  • Business
  • Cellular Data
  • Personal
  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Travel
  • There is also a custom name option.

eSIM settings

You might want to adjust these settings after you switch to eSIM. (Image credit: Future)

Second, you have to choose in Settings which number to use as your Default Voice Line. This will ensure that you’re calling from the right number.

There is good reason, by the way, to have multiple, named eSIMs. If you enable “Allow Cellular Data Switching,” the iPhone 14 Pro (and all other eSIM-supporting iPhones) can auto-switch between eSIM numbers depending on coverage and signal availability. This will save you from accidentally using your home eSIM when traveling in, say, Europe, and paying exorbitant roaming fees.

My experience with Verizon’s and Apple’s SIM-to-eSIM process was smooth as silk. However, I have heard that it’s not always so easy. US Mobile Editor Phil Berne recounted to me the difficulties he ran into with T-Mobile and how they had to search for the process at a local T-Mobile store and try it twice until they found a QR code that simplified the process.

There may be even greater hurdles with smaller carriers as eSIM-only phones make their way around the globe, but my experience proves it’s not only possible but having an eSIM-only iPhone 14 Pro may be preferable.

Thanks for your service, tiny SIM card. Guess I won’t be missing you, after all.

If you’re not quite ready to go the eSIM route, but want to consider your next smartphone upgrade, check out our roundup of the best phones.

A 35-year industry veteran and award-winning journalist, Lance has covered technology since PCs were the size of suitcases and “on line” meant “waiting.” He’s a former Lifewire Editor-in-Chief, Mashable Editor-in-Chief, and, before that, Editor in Chief of PCMag.com and Senior Vice President of Content for Ziff Davis, Inc. He also wrote a popular, weekly tech column for Medium called The Upgrade.

Lance Ulanoff (opens in new tab) makes frequent appearances on national, international, and local news programs including Live with Kelly and Ryan, Fox News, Fox Business, the Today Show (opens in new tab), Good Morning America, CNBC, CNN, and the BBC. 

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Nothing announces official launch date for new Ear (stick) AirPods alternatives

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Nothing announces official launch date for new Ear (stick) AirPods alternatives
Nothing Ear (stick) held by a model on white background



(Image credit: Nothing )

True to form, Nothing has just announced the full reveal date for its upcoming audio product, Ear (stick). 

So, an announcement about an announcement. You’ve got to hand it to Carl Pei’s marketing department, they never miss a trick.

What we’re saying is that although we still have ‘nothing’ conclusive about the features, pricing or release date for the Ear (stick) except an image of another model holding them (and we’ve seen plenty of those traipsing down the catwalk recently), we do have a date – the day when we’ll be granted official access to this information. 

That day is October 26. Nothing assures us that on this day we’ll be able to find out everything, including pricing and product specifications, during the online Ear (stick) Reveal, at 3PM BST (which is 10AM ET, or 1AM on Wednesday if you’re in Sydney, Australia) on nothing.tech (opens in new tab)

Any further information? A little. Nothing calls the Ear (stick), which is now the product’s official name, “the next generation of Nothing sound technology”, and its “most advanced audio product yet”. 

But that’s not all! Apparently, Ear (stick) are “half in-ear true wireless earbuds that balance supreme comfort with exceptional sound, made not to be felt when in use. They’re feather-light with an ergonomic design that’s moulded to your ears. Delivered in a unique charging case, inspired by classic cosmetic silhouettes, and compactly formed to simply glide into pockets.” 

Opinion: I need more than a lipstick-style case

Nothing Ear (stick) – official leaked renders pic.twitter.com/FrhKmRttmiOctober 1, 2022

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It’s no secret that I want Nothing’s earbuds to succeed in world dominated by AirPods; who doesn’t love a plucky, eccentric underdog? 

But in order to become some of the best true wireless earbuds on the market, there is room for improvement over the Nothing Ear 1, the company’s inaugural earbuds. 

Aside from this official ‘news’ from Nothing, leaked images and videos of the Ear (stick) have been springing up all over the internet (thank you, developer Kuba Wojciechowski) and they depict earbuds that look largely unchanged, which is a shame. 

For me, the focus needs to shift from gimmicks such as a cylindrical case with a red section at the end which twists up like a lipstick. Don’t get me wrong, I love a bit of theater, but only if the sound coming from the earbuds themselves is top dog. 

As the natural companions for the Nothing Phone 1, it makes sense for the Ear (stick) to take a place similar to that of Apple’s AirPods 3, where the flagship Ear (1) sit alongside the AirPods Pro 2 as a flagship offering. 

See, that lipstick case shape likely will not support wireless charging. That and the rumored lack of ANC means the Ear (stick) is probably arriving as the more affordable option in Nothing’s ouevre. 

For now, we sit tight until October 26. 

Becky is a senior staff writer at TechRadar (which she has been assured refers to expertise rather than age) focusing on all things audio. Before joining the team, she spent three years at What Hi-Fi? testing and reviewing everything from wallet-friendly wireless earbuds to huge high-end sound systems. Prior to gaining her MA in Journalism in 2018, Becky freelanced as an arts critic alongside a 22-year career as a professional dancer and aerialist – any love of dance starts with a love of music. Becky has previously contributed to Stuff, FourFourTwo and The Stage. When not writing, she can still be found throwing shapes in a dance studio, these days with varying degrees of success.  

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YouTube could make 4K videos exclusive to Premium subscribers

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YouTube could make 4K videos exclusive to Premium subscribers
Woman watching YouTube on mobile phone screen



(Image credit: Shutterstock / Kicking Studio)

You might soon have to buy YouTube Premium to watch 4K YouTube videos, a new user test suggests.

According to a Reddit thread (opens in new tab) highlighted on Twitter by leaker Alvin (opens in new tab), several non-Premium YouTube users have reported seeing 4K resolution (and higher) video options limited to YouTube Premium subscribers on their iOS devices. For these individuals, videos are currently only available to stream in up to 1440p (QHD) resolution.

The apparent experiment only seems to be affecting a handful of YouTube users for now, but it suggests owner Google is toying with the idea of implementing a site-wide paywall for access to high-quality video in the future.

So, after testing up to 12 ads on YouTube for non-Premium users, now some users reported that they also have to get a Premium account just to watch videos in 4K. pic.twitter.com/jJodoAxeDpOctober 1, 2022

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It’s no secret that Google has been searching for new ways to monetize its YouTube platform in recent months. In September, the company introduced five unskippable ads for some YouTube users as part of a separate test – an unexpected development that, naturally, didn’t go down well with much of the YouTube community. 

A resolution paywall seems a more palatable approach from Google. While annoying, the change isn’t likely to provoke the same level of ire from non-paying YouTube users as excessive ads, given that many smartphones still max out at QHD resolution anyway. 

Of course, if it encourages those who do care about high-resolution viewing to invest in the platform’s Premium subscription package, it may also be more lucrative for Google. After all, YouTube Premium, which offers ad-free viewing, background playback and the ability to download videos for offline use, currently costs $11.99 / £11.99 / AU$14.99 per month.

Suffice to say, the subscription service hasn’t taken off in quite the way Google would’ve hoped since its launch in 2014. Only around 50 million users are currently signed up to YouTube Premium, while something close to 2 billion people actively use YouTube on a monthly basis. 

Might the addition of 4K video into Premium’s perk package bump up that number? Only time will tell. We’ll be keeping an eye on our own YouTube account to see whether this resolution paywall becomes permanent in the coming months.

Axel is a London-based staff writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the newest movies to latest Apple developments as part of the site’s daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion. 

Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned a gold standard NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme. 

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Europe sets deadline for USB-C charging for (almost) all laptops

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Europe sets deadline for USB-C charging for (almost) all laptops

USB-C als Ladestandard in der EU

Mundissima / Shutterstock


Author: Michael Crider
, Staff Writer

Michael is a former graphic designer who’s been building and tweaking desktop computers for longer than he cares to admit. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction, and salsa verde, in no particular order.

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