What's an APN?

APN stands for Access Point Name. It's the name of the (virtual) gateway between a mobile network and another network, usually the internet. You should think of it as a virtual door that connects two (computer) networks.

Setting up the APN

Before your SIM can set up a data connection, you need to configure the correct APN. The mobile network checks if the configured APN matches the SIM cards possible APNs. If the network can't verify the APN it blocks all traffic. It's essential that the correct APN is set in the software of your device.

Default APN settings Olivia:

  • APN: olivia

  • APN username: (none)

  • APN password: (none)

  • IP Address: Dynamic (using DHCP)

  • Data Roaming: Enabled

Public vs Private APN

There are public and private APN's. A public APN by many separate customers. A good example of such an APN is the one provisioned in your mobile phone. You and many other customers of your mobile network operator use that APN to access the Internet. Our Olivia APN is also a public APN since all our customers are able to use it.

A private APN is private to one customer. Only the SIM cards of that customer can access such an APN. There are many reasons why you would want a private APN. It can be prestige to owning one that's named after your company. I mean how cool is Olivia as an APN. But usually there are technical reasons for owning one. A VPN for example usually requires its own APN. Since you connect two networks, it requires a 'private door' between them.

IP Address

An IP address gets assigned by the APN. This IP Address allows servers to send and receive data from the device. IP addresses can change with every data session the device starts, called dynamic IP. The device can also have an static IP address set by the APN. This means it won't change per session and other devices can't use it. Claiming the static IP address comes at an cost and can be useful in certain situations.


An APN can be have an username and password for enhanced security. Preventing data usage when somebody tries to use the SIM in another device. How ever this is better solved with Olivia Theft protection, using IMEI Lock. This will lock the SIM to the assign device. Never having to worry about unauthorised data usage from a stolen SIM.

BasicsRoel van der Meer