Even before smartphones become popular, dual SIM phones already exist, allowing people to use two phone numbers in one device. With the development of phones with an additional SIM card, people can manage personal as well as business calls from a single phone. Gone are the days when people have to carry two mobile phones or switch SIM cards so they can separate their personal and business contacts. This is one of the primary benefits of having a dual SIM phone; you can have one mobile number for family and friends, and another one for work.
Traditionally, dual-SIM phones allow the insertion of two physical SIM cards on a single smartphone or device. However, some dual-SIM phones, like iPhones, don’t actually have two card slots and allow the use of one physical SIM and one eSIM instead.
Most dual SIM phones also have active dual SIM capability. A dual SIM phone can support two active SIMs at the same time without the need for removing and switching SIMs to change your mobile number. As a result, you can receive/send messages and calls on both lines. You can also choose which SIM card can be your voice call card or primary mobile data/network. Dual-SIM phones are unlocked phones, so you won’t be tied to a network.
Related: What Is a SIM Card Adapter
Inside this Article
- Best Dual-SIM Phones
- Why Are Dual SIM Phones Good?
- How Does a Dual SIM Phone Work?
Best Dual-SIM Phones
Whether for personal, business, privacy concerns, or travel, we have curated the list of the best dual SIM card phones for you to choose from.
You can only find one nano-SIM card slot in iPhone 13, but you can use an eSIM to add another carrier. Alternatively, you can use two eSIM with iPhone 13 if you don’t want a physical SIM card. Aside from a versatile network capability, there are more reasons why you should maximize your investment and get an iPhone 13 instead of the older models.
iPhone 13 has a Super Retina XDR OLED screen with Dolby Vision, enabling an immersive all-screen display. It is stocked with a nicely capable Apple A15 Bionic, which means the smoothest performance from the famous phone maker. Its 12 MP cameras for ultrawide, wide, and selfies with sensor-shift stabilization are also to adore if you love mobile photography.
iPhone 13 also comes with a better and improved battery performance than the previous models. This smartphone meets all the standards for an Apple device. It works seamlessly and allows multitasking without any interruption.
- – Excellent performance and features
- – Great battery backup compared to other iPhone models
- – Bright OLED display
- – No 120Hz refresh rate
- – Notch is still there
It’s rare to see a compact mobile phone that does not sacrifice battery, camera, stereo, and dual SIM slot, but Asus Zenfone 8 was able to tick all these items. It is dual standby, so you’ll be sure that it can monitor both sim cards even they are from different networks.
Aside from the dual sim, we have nothing but praises for Zenfone 8. Its 5.9-inch 120Hz AMOLED screen is just eye candy, and we mean it in a good way. Its Snapdragon 888 5G chip and 4000 mAh battery also made the device more capable for gaming, work, and viewing. Zenfone 8’s don’t hold back as well, at least in our opinion. Its dual-camera capable of wide and ultrawide shots can take impressive photo quality across the board. Asus did all of these while keeping Zenfone 8 at a mid-price point.
Oops! We almost forgot; Zenfone 8 has a 3.5mm headphone jack, too.
If you don’t fancy a small phone, Zenfone 8 has a big brother which has a motorized flipping camera. It’s part of our best phablet list, too.
- – Excellent 120Hz graphics display
- – Excellent system performance
- – Compact design
- – Dependable battery and charging
- – Flagship features at mid-price point
- – No wireless charging
The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE allows you to use two physical nano-SIM cards from different carriers. Its US version will also come with built-in eSIM support, which means you can use an embedded phone number as your second contact.
Aside from its dual SIM capability, there are more reasons why this mobile phone with two sim slots landed this list. Samsung has specifically focused on improving display, performance, and camera for the cheaper option in the Galaxy S series. Its screen panel is slightly smaller than the previous S FE, but it’s more aggressive this time. It has a higher screen-to-body ratio, which means fewer visible bezels.
S21 FE’s is stocked with fast and reliable chipsets that are also in other S21 phones. However, the international version is getting the Snapdragon 888 5G instead of the Exynos. For the snappers, S21 FE doesn’t claim better sensors but it brags more novelty features like an object eraser.
- – Flagship-level processors
- – Better display and body-to-screen ratio
- – Novelty features for the camera
- – No charger is included in the package
- -No 3.5mm headphone jack
- – Storage is not expandable
Samsung Galaxy S21 is, of course, one to consider if you are looking for a mobile phone with a dual SIM card slot. You can use a nano-SIM for the first slot, while you can use either a nano-SIM or an embedded SIM card for the second carrier.
In terms of performance, the Galaxy S21 has a wide range of features that make it stand out from the crowd. It is also one of the best-reviewed Snapdragon 888 smartphones available in the market. For its international version, its chipset is substituted by the equally capable Exynos 2100. Samsung’s S21 comes with a wireless charging feature and a Power Share feature so you can share battery power with another device like your earbuds.
The camera is also one to love about the Galaxy S21, although it’s practically the same as S20. Its lenses are made with low-light photography in mind. Its 12 MP main sensor is paired with dual-pixel autofocusing technology, while its 64 MP telephoto camera has Phase Detection autofocus and 3x hybrid zoom. You can also achieve action-cam clarity with Galaxy S21, thanks to its ultrawide lens with Super Steady video technology.
- – Stunning images from the front and rear cameras
- – Innovative features such as Power Share
- – No charger, headphones in the package
- – Few user-reported issues with the AT&T Network
Aside from the dual SIM card slot, there are many reasons why you should choose the Sony Xperia 5 III over other dual SIM phones, or the more expensive Xperia 1 III at the very least. Although it’s not technically the flagship model for Sony, it might as well be because of the flagship-like features that this Xperia model carries.
Sony has made a good job at maximizing the compact design of the Xperia 5 III. Alongside the hybrid SIM card slot, it has room for a headphone jack, stereo speakers, and MicroSD slot. Surprisingly, it also has the same 4500 mAh battery capacity as the Xperia I III.
Xperia 5 III’s core components are also exactly identical to the Xperia I III. It is stocked with the high-end Snapdragon 888 chipset integrated with octa-core and Adreno 660 processors.
What set Xperia 5 III from its expensive sibling is 8GB RAM and 256GB storage limit, as well as the exclusion of wireless charging.
- – High-end chipset and processors
- – High battery capacity
- – Dual SIM slot, MicroSD slot, stereo speakers, headphone jack
- – Compact design
- – No wireless charging
- – Charging is not so fast
You don’t have to spend a treasure if you only want a dual SIM phone — many low-cost phones have that feature. But if you have the budget, spending on a gaming phone is not a bad idea either. And what gaming phone can you wish for other than the Asus ROG Phone 5?
The Asus ROG Phone 5 ticks many of the boxes that mobile gamers may look for. It has a wide 6.78-inch 144Hz AMOLED display with a Corning Gorilla Glass Victus protection. It also has a powerful Snapdragon 888 under its hood, optimized by up to 16GB RAM. The Asus ROG Phone 5’s battery is also expectedly powerful, although the all-new split battery design caught us by surprise.
Aside from the requisite DTS:X stereo speakers, the 3.5mm headphone jack that is lacking from ROG Phone 3 has also made a comeback.
The only letdown of ROG Phone 5 is that it’s not as sturdy as you’d expect from an ASUS phone. It also lacks water or dust resistance.
- – Excellent battery performance
- – Fast chipset in the form of SD 888
- – Superb display
- – Exquisite speaker system and a 3.5mm jack
- – No SD card slot
- – Lacks IP rating
Its predecessor has already gained praise as an affordable mobile phone with flagship-like performance. This time, the Moto G200 solidifies that claim as it bridges the affordable Moto G series with the premium Moto Edge. For its dual SIM technology, it uses dual standby mode for two nano-sims, allowing for easy switching between networks.
Despite the price, the Moto G200 was able to accommodate a flagship-level Snapdragon 888+ chipset with Octa-core and Adreno 660 processors. To put it in plain English, it offers you clock speed performance and AI capabilities. It also provides you with a pure gaming experience unparalleled in this price range.
Moto G200’s camera capabilities won’t waver as well. The 108 MP wide camera is paired with autofocus 13 MP ultra-wide and 2 MP depth sensors. It got rid of the 8 MP ultrawide lens for selfies this time and settled for the 16 MP camera.
Also read: Best Motorola Phones
- – Water-resistant layer
- – Better charging speed
- – Excellent camera performance
- – Flagship-level chipset and processors
- – No optical zoom
- – No memory card slot, 3.5mm headphone jack
- – Wireless charging is still out of reach
Google Pixel 5a is also one of the best dual SIM phones you can consider. It comes with a single nano-SIM card slot, but you can pair it with an eSIM for dual SIM connectivity.
There is a love and hate going on with Google Pixel 5a because of its close similarity with the previous Pixel A phone. From the Snapdragon 765G chipset down to the camera quality, there is nothing to set the two Google phone iterations apart. Instead of specs and performance, Google has focused more on making Pixel 5a sturdier.
Google Pixel 5a is dust and water-resistant, something that we can only wish for its predecessors. Google has also finally let go of the cheap plastic frame and back cover and used aluminum material instead.
Perhaps the most significant upgrade, Google Pixel 5a’s battery is 17% better than Pixel 4a.
- – Dust and water resistance
- – Dependable battery
- – Battery was improved but not charging speed
- – Wireless charging is no where to find
Honor 50 is one of the most stylish-looking dual SIM phones available with its 6.57-inch OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. It comes in single SIM and dual SIM versions. In the Dual SIM version, both card slots can be set to accommodate the primary or secondary SIM card. Similar to many mobile phones with dual SIM cards, Honor 50 only supports dual standby. While the two SIM cards can remain connected to their network, one will be inactive when the other is on a call.
As a Huawei spinoff, there are many things that will remind you of Huawei when you see Honor 50. Its appearance and camera layout are oddly similar to Huawei P50 Pro with a performance close to the Nova 9. But unlike Huawei phones, Honor 50 has Google services.
Sadly, Honor’s ties with Huawei are also a bane for the brand. While it’s available in Europe, Asia Pacific, and Latin America, the US Department of Commerce has blacklisted the brand for allegedly being used for evading US export controls against Huawei.
- – Impressive battery life
- – Excellent camera performance
- – Stylish appearance, curved edges
- – More expensive than it should be
- – Not available in the US
Xiaomi’s Poco F3 is one of the best mid-range dual SIM mobile phones that is built with features only found in smartphones that are much more expensive. The Poco F3 has triple rear cameras with a configuration of 48 MP (wide), 8 MP (ultrawide), and 5 MP (macro) sensors. It has a punch hole in the front for the 20 MP selfie shooter. While it’s not the best in the camera department, it can produce beautiful images even in low light. Poco F3 just gets better after this.
It has an octa-core processor integrated with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 chipset as well as Adreno 650 graphics card, ensuring a smooth and flawless performance when you’re playing games or just browsing. It packs 120Hz AMOLED and stereo speakers for a truly immersive experience.
Pocophone F3’s robust 4520 mAh battery will help it run for an entire day without charging the device. It also comes with a fast-charging feature, an in-box charger that can boost up the battery to 100% within an hour.
- – Excellent long-lasting battery life, fast charging
- – 120Hz AMOLED
- – Flawless performance
- – Great value-for-money features
- – no microSD
- – Mediocre camera
OnePlus 8T is potentially the last entry we will see from the OnePlus T line. But since its RT replacement is not available in the US, 8T remains a solid option for dual SIM smartphones. It won’t have the latest technologies, but it is not as if its already proven premium performance will change.
It comes with the fastest in-display fingerprint sensor on any mobile phone in the market. This smartphone has always been known for its stunning camera quality. While we would love some camera processing improvement, you can capture stunning photos with OnePlus 8T even in low light photography. Its primary shooter also has autofocus and optical image stabilization.
OnePlus 8T also has some novelty features you will love. One of our favorites is the Warp Charging, which prevents the device from overheating even when you are charging at 65W.
- – Fast-charging technology
- – Smooth fingerprint unlocking
- – Flagship level performance
- – Camera is not necessarily the best
- – Most games are capped at 60Hz
Huawei Mate 40 Pro is equipped with a beautiful 6.76-inch screen integrated with an OLED display and highlights 1344 x 2772-pixel resolution that provides you with a crystal-clear display for gaming and viewing.
Mate 40 Pro still runs on Android 10, but it doesn’t have Google Play Services. Integrated with up to 8 GB RAM and Kirin 9000 chipset, the smartphone is completely functional and can handle gaming, and streaming without any disruption. You can also play high-end mobile games without any delay.
In terms of its dual sim capacity, you can use one Nano-SIM and one eSIM for the Mate 40 Pro. It uses dual standby technology so you can’t utilize it to accommodate two calls for the two numbers at the same time.
- – Wide-angle lens with three cameras
- – Top-notch features and specs
- – No Google services
- – Expensive
The OnePlus 9 Pro is fitting of its tagline as “your best shot” because of the work that was put in for its shooters. One Plus 9 Pro, alongside the OnePlus 9 base model, is the first product under the collaboration between the Chinese brand and Hasselblad. With this mobile phone, you can expect photos that are reminiscent of Hasselblad cameras.
Everything about the OnePlus 9 Pro’s camera is beefed up. Its 48 MP main camera has omnidirectional Phase Detection autofocus, which is responsible for its better low-light performance. It also has a dedicated telephoto camera, as well as monochrome and auto-focusing ultrawide lenses. Although it’s an overstatement to say that it’s the best camera phone, the OnePlus 9 Pro won’t be a bad investment for casual photography.
In terms of connectivity, the OnePlus 9 Pro won’t fail you. You can pick its Dual SIM version to keep connected based on what network is available.
- – Super-fast charging feature
- – Excellent quality of display
- – Hasselblad color calibration
- – Headphone jack not available
- – Camera is good, but there are better
We like the hybrid dual SIM slot inside the Huawei P50 Pro, but it’s only one of the many reasons why this dual SIM phone is getting our recommendation. Like its predecessors, this year’s Huawei flagship won’t disappoint when it comes to its snappers.
It has an interesting quad-camera layout with the latest Leica technology. Its high-end imaging setup is composed of a 50MP primary, 64 MP periscope telephoto, 13 MP auto-focusing, and 40 MP black and white lenses. Its selfies, on the other hand, play around 13 MP with an autofocus mechanism.
The Huawei P50 Pro runs on the Snapdragon 888 for most parts of the world; some may get it with Kirin 9000 chipset. Both chipsets are equally able to support high-end specs like 120Hz refresh rate and 1228p resolution. However, neither of the Huawei P50 Pro on SD 888 or Kirin 9000 has the 5G modem.
- – High-end imaging setup
- – IP68 dust/water resistant
- – Clock speed performance
- – Not 5G compatible
- – Not compatible with all US Networks
- – No Google Play Services
The Xiaomi Mi 11 can deliver more bang for your buck, but its lite version is a solid choice either. It has two SIM card slots with one that can also serve as a MicroSD card slot if you don’t have a second carrier to use. The rest is shaped after the more expensive Mi 11 but, of course, with some deviations.
First and foremost, Mi 11 Lite’s camera layout is the same. Although it understandably has lower specifications than the flagship model, its camera quality remains enjoyable across the board. It has a 64 MP PDAF high-res lens, an 8 MP ultrawide, and a 5 MP autofocusing macro cam. Its 16 MP front cam is also impressive for selfies.
For the best performance, you should get the 5G version of Mi 11 Lite. It relies on Snapdragon 780G 5G chipset that provides mid-range performance. Although there is an obvious cost-cutting, Mi 11 Lite is a good alternative for a premium phone.
- – Enjoyable camera performance across the board
- – Larger screen for better graphics display
- – Excellent battery, fast charging
- – Settled for Snapdragon 780G
Why Are Dual SIM Phones Good?
For some individuals, purchasing dual SIM card phones can be beneficial. It greatly benefits entrepreneurs who tend to have one mobile number for their business or work and another one for personal contacts. A businessperson can either have two different mobile phones, one for personal use while one for business networks. With a dual SIM phone, you can have both numbers active and ready for use anytime. Carrying one mobile phone is more convenient, safer, and more comfortable than having two mobile phones.
Dual-SIM phones that are unlocked or aren’t tied to specific networks let users register or activate any mobile carrier they like. That said, it’s one of the excellent options for frequent travelers. You can effectively use a dual SIM smartphone for activating a local SIM when you travel to a foreign country without worrying about unlocking your smartphone or purchasing a new phone for traveling.
Another advantage of a dual SIM phone is maximizing your usage for phone calls, texts, and other purposes such as mobile data. Some network service providers have great mobile data plans but pricey voice plans and vice versa. With a dual SIM phone, you can combine conveniently two different phone plans from two different network providers and still get a cheaper monthly bill for data as well as calling and messaging.
How Does a Dual SIM Phone Work?
When you’ve decided to buy a dual SIM mobile phone, you should know how it works as well as its different types of implementation.
Here are the different implementations of a dual SIM phone and how they work:
Dual SIM (Dual Active)
This type of Dual-SIM phone lets you call someone from both of the SIM cards activated on your mobile phone. It can also receive calls on either of the two SIM cards all at once. This implementation has both SIM cards active and when you are calling someone from one of these networks, the other SIM still works and can make phone calls, receive texts, or use mobile data.
Dual SIM (Passive)
A Dual-SIM passive phone can support two different SIM cards; however, only one of them can be active at any given time. That said, one SIM card is not reachable or won’t work since the other SIM is activated. If you want to use the other SIM, you need to activate it manually.
Dual SIM (Dual Standby)
This implementation is a combination of Dual Active and Dual Passive. It allows your smartphone to have two active SIM cards, and they utilize only one radio transceiver. As a result, they are both active only for as long as they’re not in use; hence, the name itself. As long as both SIM cards are in Standby mode, you can text or call someone on any of the SIM cards.
If you’re looking to purchase a dual SIM smartphone, there are numerous options available in the market. In fact, there may be one too many alternatives, which can be overwhelming. You should create a list of what your needs or preferences are before making any purchases. Consult this buyer’s guide to discover what exactly are the factors that you require before purchasing a dual SIM phone.
Have we missed your favorite smartphone on this list? Do you have any experience with a dual SIM phone recently? We would love to hear your insights and recommendations! Feel free to contact us or comment down below.