mailto: blog -at- heyrick -dot- eu

Bweeg SIM hack

I have a pay-as-you-go SIM card with the Bouygues network. It's pronounced "bweeg". I bought it a long time ago as a backup in case Orange was down or anything like that.
Mom used to use SFR. Then SFR invalidly (and with no notice) changed the terms of the credit engagement (the phone server gave a four week expiry date - turned out the phone server was wrong and the three weeks printed in tiny text on the ticket was correct) causing a loss of a huge amount of credit acrued over several years, more than she'd ever actually need. Well, obviously mom decided that SFR were basically thieves and wanted nothing more to do with them.
So I offered her my Bweeg SIM. While a basic pay-as-you-go jobbie with similar tariffs, it came with a number of free SMS and each credit value lasted longer.
Every so often, I'd buy a €5 credit just to keep the number active (any credit renews the account/number for 12 months).

This time, I decided to find my mother's phone. A little Samsung thing that can barely send text messages, all carefully written using that awful nine-key method. Because mom wasn't interested in any sort of smartphone, even though I could get a basic one she could use for about €40, or recycle one of my old ones... She wanted to send/receive messages and make/answer phone calls and..... that's it. She considered a "phone" to be a phone, as opposed to me who thinks a "phone" is a multimedia computational device that, once in a blue moon, makes calls. But, then, if we compare "time I've spent talking to people" with "time I've spent watching Netflix" (or, worse, "time I've spent on either ROOL's forums or TVTropes"), then I'm afraid the actual-talking part is a mere fraction of the error margin of the other.

Anyway, found mom's phone. Extracted the regular sized SIM from it. Decided to drop it into my Mi 10T.
That's not going to work. The Xiaomi is a modern smartphone. It wants a nano SIM.

Bweeg's website is, actually, worse than useless. It's as if the pay-as-you-go stuff is an afterthought. Try to find assistance, it takes you to the main site. But you cannot connect there, as your credentials are for a prepaid device, not a contract.
These things used to be together. I remember the customer service people used to refer to themselves as "Woobies" (which I thought was hysterical - go look up "woobie" on TV Tropes), but somewhere along the way (about five years ago?) they split off the prepaid stuff to a site that, basically, allows you to buy credit and... uh... yeah, that's about it.

There's a rather sad tale that can be found. A 65 year old bloke who was going in and out of PET scans and such needed an nano SIM for a new phone. After several attempts at getting a response, he finally got one and it seems that the only option may well be to cancel the line and get a new one. Which would mean a new number, not to mention all the farting around proving who you are.

In other words, it would seem as if Bweeg is a total loss if you need to downsize your older SIM to fit into a modern phone.

Luckily for me, I have scissors. ☺

Even more luckily for me, I had a compatible SIM. Look at the number of metal bits. If it's three connections at each end with one connected to the middle part, then you're good to go.
If, however, you have a really old SIM with four connections, it's too big.

One hand-crafted nano SIM
One hand-crafted nano SIM.

Now, the basic warning is simple. DO NOT CUT THE METAL BITS. The chip is buried under there, with the metal pads being the contacts to it.
The entire rest of the SIM card is just a bit of plastic. Nothing to hurt there.

Make a note of which side of the SIM has the little piece missing. Then carefully cut around the sides and the bottom of the chip (metal pads).
Finally, cut across the top, but leave a little bit of extra plastic.
Then clip off a corner to give it a piece missing in the same orientation as it was before.

Pop it in, boot the phone, it should appear and be active.

Connected to a mobile network
Connected to a mobile network.

By the way, my €5 (that expires at the end of the day) bought me 3.6MB of mobile data and 11 minutes of talking to another mobile.



Your comments:

Please note that while I check this page every so often, I am not able to control what users write; therefore I disclaim all liability for unpleasant and/or infringing and/or defamatory material. Undesired content will be removed as soon as it is noticed. By leaving a comment, you agree not to post material that is illegal or in bad taste, and you should be aware that the time and your IP address are both recorded, should it be necessary to find out who you are. Oh, and don't bother trying to inline HTML. I'm not that stupid! ☺ ADDING COMMENTS DOES NOT WORK IF READING TRANSLATED VERSIONS.
You can now follow comment additions with the comment RSS feed. This is distinct from the b.log RSS feed, so you can subscribe to one or both as you wish.

John, 11th October 2022, 20:30
I was (in desperation) recently watching a US program about the Bermuda Triangle - well, the Florida bit of it - and was amazed to hear the US participants referring to buoys as "boo-ees". 
Reading of your French pronunciation tips for Bouygues, something I've never even attempted to pronounce, makes me wonder if they use a French pronunciation, perhaps dating back to Napoleon and the Louisiana Purchase, an event I only recently learnt about when it appeared in the granddaughter's homework one time. 
This leads me to postulate that we must all have huge gaps in our knowledge and understanding of the world! 
Anon, 11th October 2022, 22:45
Yes... I remember having to cut a full-sized SIM (remember them? The size of an actual credit card?) down to mini-SIM size to use in a different phone. Nowadays they just pop out a bit like Russian dolls. 
Also I can confirm that a USIM (which is a SIM but 3G or newer) will pop straight into an older 2G phone and work perfectly.
Anon, 11th October 2022, 22:47
And also... "Bweeg" sounds a bit like a guest character from Red Dwarf.

Add a comment (v0.11) [help?] . . . try the comment feed!
Your name
Your email (optional)
Validation Are you real? Please type 45794 backwards.
Your comment
French flagSpanish flagJapanese flag
«   October 2022   »

(Felicity? Marte? Find out!)

Last 5 entries

List all b.log entries

Return to the site index



Search Rick's b.log!

PS: Don't try to be clever.
It's a simple substring match.


Last read at 13:31 on 2024/06/15.

QR code

Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional
Valid CSS
Valid RSS 2.0


© 2022 Rick Murray
This web page is licenced for your personal, private, non-commercial use only. No automated processing by advertising systems is permitted.
RIPA notice: No consent is given for interception of page transmission.


Have you noticed the watermarks on pictures?
Next entry - 2022/10/15
Return to top of page