Modem and SIM Card

The Librem 5 development board is supplied with an on-board modem: a SIMCOM SIM7100A or SIM7100E, depending on your region. The Librem 5 phone will be supplied with a different modem. Regardless of the modem in use, the process of installing a SIM card and accessing the mobile network should be mostly the same when performed in the graphical user interface.

The sections below cover each step in the process.

Power off the Board

Before continuing, log out of the board, and use the on-screen power button or the hardware power switch to power off the development board.

Installing the SIM Card

The development board accepts a Micro SIM card in the socket that is adjacent to the modem. This is located on the opposite side of the board to the screen, as shown in the figure below.

The location of sockets, buttons and switches on the Librem 5 development board

The Micro SIM card socket is located next to the modem and the power switch.

With the side of the board containing the modem facing up, insert the card into the socket with its metal pads facing down, ensuring that the side of the card with the corner removed is inserted into the socket. The socket should click as the card is latched into place.

Power on the Board

Supply power to the board again. The system should boot up to a lock screen with a locked SIM symbol.

The SIM locked symbol

The symbol on the lock screen showing that the SIM card is locked.

Unlock the screen by swiping up and log in as usual.

Open the Settings

Swipe down from the top of the screen to open the settings panel, then press the tools button.

The tools button on the settings panel

Press the tools button to launch the control center.

The GNOME Control Center will start. By default, it will show the Cellular settings panel. Initially, this will show that the SIM card is locked.

The cellular panel with SIM locked

The cellular panel is locked until the SIM card is unlocked.

Press the Unlock button to start the process of unlocking the SIM card. You will be prompted to enter the pin code for the SIM card – this will have been supplied by your cellular network service provider.

The SIM unlock page with the pin code entered

When the pin code is entered, the Unlock button is highlighted and can be pressed.

Enter your pin code using the on-screen keyboard and press the Unlock button. You only have a limited number of attempts to enter your SIM pin code, so take care to enter it correctly. Once the pin code has been entered, the Cellular panel will be shown.

The cellular settings panel

The cellular settings panel allows the use of the modem and cellular network features to be configured.

The Cellular panel allows the modem’s usage of the cellular network to be configured.