Verizon: new patent for virtual SIMs on Blockchain
Verizon: new patent for virtual SIMs on Blockchain

Verizon: new patent for virtual SIMs on Blockchain

By Stefano Cavalli - 20 Sep 2019

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Verizon, the US telecommunications giant, has registered a patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office of the United States showing how it is possible to create virtual SIMs thanks to the use of blockchain technology.

This is not the first time ever that Verizon has been involved in the blockchain industry. Already at the end of July, they announced on their website, in the Jobs Vacancies section, their interest in hiring qualified specialists in this field, in particular, they are interested in the so-called Blockchain Engineers.

Along with this announcement, the company mentioned that it was willing to develop its own distributed network with different use cases. Even before that, in February of 2019, an announcement showed how Verizon wanted to embark on the path of developing a blockchain using Guardtime’s technology.

On September 10th, the relevant US office granted a new patent called “System and method for virtual SIM card”.

The abstract of the document explains:

“A method is provided for using virtual subscriber identity modules (vSIMs) for client devices. Verizon provides tools to record on the blockchain and update data using virtual SIMs. In addition, the vSIM can be retrieved and used by any one of different devices associated with the user account or loaned to other users”.

The aim is, therefore, to replace the physical SIM in order to create a virtual one. The device creates records on the blockchain that include both a vSIM certificate, for network services, and IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity), which is an identification number of each user in a given network.

Verizon calls it “Blockchain vSIM” and it is a distributed consensus network where nodes are able to keep an up-to-date copy of all data in an encrypted tree structure at all times. It is not clear, however, whether Verizon, along with these vSIMs, will represent the future of mobile and a tangible use case of blockchain technology.

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