The iOS 12.1 update officially brought dual SIM support to the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR, letting users of Apple's newest batch of iPhones take advantage of two SIMs — a physical one and a virtual one called eSIM.
However, Verizon chose not to activate eSIMs when the update rolled out because of a software issue that resulted in dual SIM activation degrading the Big Red's service. However, that will change soon, new reports say.
According to an internal memo that 9to5Mac obtained, Verizon will soon offer dual SIMs again early next month. If true, that means users under Verizon may begin taking advantage of dual SIM support on their latest iPhones as soon as December.
Verizon iPhone Dual SIM Problem
The problem with dual SIM support on iPhone, specifically with Verizon, was that it would drop users down to the 2G network when the physical SIM was used in the secondary slot. In other words, users got switched by default from LTE to just 2G CDMA. That means they received slower speeds and lack of coverage, among other issues. This was especially problematic in regions where Verizon only offers LTE coverage.
As a result, Verizon promptly declined to activate eSIMs until it resolved the problem.
"Wireless customers will be able to activate Verizon service eSIMs as soon as we're confident you'll be able to have the great, high-quality service you expect from us on both your primary and secondary line," Verizon said at the time.
The company also said in October that it would attempt to solve the issue by the end of the year, which, if the above report is true, is right on schedule. That means users who have been waiting for Verizon to open up dual SIM activations shouldn't have to wait longer. Verizon also said during the launch last month that it believed the software limitations would be resolved quickly with Apple's cooperation. The internal memo seems to suggest both companies have successfully worked on the issue.
AT&T Dual SIM Support
Verizon isn't the only company to drop dual SIM support, it should be noted. AT&T also abruptly stopped endorsing dual SIM activations, as it found the iPhone Visual Voicemail feature would not work correctly when the phone both had primary and secondary lines active. It also said Apple was working on a fix for a future software update, although it's not clear if that problem will be resolved in the same "early December" time frame.