The boss of France Telecom, owners of Orange, Stephan Richard has hinted at Apple wanting to reduce the size of the iPhone 5. Apparently Apple want to make the iPhone 5 much thinner than previous devices, allowing the iPhone 5 to compete with the latest smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S.

Richard said that Orange was working with the electronics giant, Apple, on even smaller SIM cards than the micro SIM. Allowing for more space within the iPhone. Speaking to All Things Digital Richard said:

“We are going to work with [Apple] in order to standardize a new format of SIM which takes into account our needs with security and authentication and also is compatible with their wishes in terms of size.

“I understood that the next iPhone would be smaller and thinner and they are definitely seeking some space.”

It looks like space within the iPhone 5 comes at a premium. So much so that Apple wanted to get rid of a SIM card all together, using virtual identification instead. This is quite a u-turn considering Apple released the iPhone 4 with the micro SIM, a card with just the chip on. However Orange weren’t too comfortable with the idea, seeing it as a potential breach of customer privacy and security. The Orange boss said:

“Apple has been working for years on reducing the size of SIM cards because they need space in the phone. They even thought about a device without any SIM card, that is what is known as the e-SIM project.

“All of us told them it was a bad idea because the SIM card is a critical piece of the security and authentication process. It would be very difficult for a telco or carrier to manage the customer relationship.

“I think that they understood this point. We had a very constructive exchange and dialogue with them.”

So it looks like Apple want the iPhone 5 to be the thinnest smartphone on the market and are currently struggling to do so. The on question everyone is asking though, when is the iPhone 5 release date?

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