eSIM Introduction To Reshape Telecommunication Industry
It won’t be long before many smartphones embrace electronic SIM cards, effectively doing away with the necessity for a physical SIM card, despite the fact that the vast majority of phones don’t support eSIM (and so a SIM slot).
The first fully eSIM-only phone made its debut in the form of the first-generation Motorola Razr flip phone. More will follow, but for now, it’s clear that phones that handle both eSIM and traditional SIM cards are in.
In phones that support both, an eSIM is used in place of a second SIM. However, you can add a second number or data contract using the eSIM; for more information on how this works, continue reading. These still contain space for a conventional micro SIM that you can use in the usual manner.
Since you may save plans from many networks on your eSIM, there are benefits for both device manufacturers and networks using eSIM, as well as benefits for you.
So you might have a data roaming SIM for use abroad or use one number for business and another for personal conversations. Even better, you might have totally different voice and data plans.
However, just what is an eSIM? What exactly will it give you, then? Now let’s elaborate.
What is eSIM (embedded SIM)
An embedded SIM card is referred to as a “eSIM.” There are no physical SIM cards involved, and you do not need to physically switch over. Not all networks currently accept eSIM, which must be supported and enabled by the network or carrier (see below).
Similar to the NFC chip used in payment systems like Apple Pay and Google Pay, an eSIM is essentially a tiny chip within your phone.
Since the data on an eSIM is rewritable, you can choose to switch operators with just a quick phone call. It takes just a few minutes to add them to a data plan and link devices with eSIMs to a mobile account. As we previously mentioned, it was
The GSMA, the association of mobile networks, supports eSIM and has established the global standard for eSIM.
Disadvantages of Using An eSIM
There may be less choice, which would be bad for customers. It’s possible that all devices might ship pre-loaded with a certain network rather than being open to everybody if a phone is sold exclusively.
Additionally, eSIM users cannot quickly swap phones without first contacting their network. Of course, most people don’t give it much thought, but for certain folks, it might be off-putting.
Because of cloud backup, SIM card storage is no longer necessary for the majority of Android or iOS users, but it does need a mental shift for those using older or less expensive phones because you can no longer physically switch a SIM card to a new phone.
Devices which eSIM are Compatible
For the iPad Pro, every Apple Watch since the Series 2, and dual SIM capability for iPhones starting with the iPhone XS and later, Apple has opted for eSIM.
Although it was first exclusively used in the US with Google Fi, the Google Pixel 2 also supported eSIM. Since the Pixel 3, it has been supported by each and every Pixel phone.
The same is valid for Samsung Galaxy phones starting with the S20 series.
How To Use An eSIM To Activate Google Fi on your iPhone
The Moto Razr flip phones now also support eSIM, as we previously announced.
Additionally, Windows 10 and 11 have eSIM support, and some devices with cellular modems, such as laptops powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon, can use eSIM as an alternative to inserting a conventional microSIM into the slot.
The Find X3 Pro phone from Oppo featured the first 5G standalone (SA) capable eSIM in the world. In essence, this indicates that eSIM can now support the most recent 5G networking specifications. Lower latency is one of the benefits of 5G SA (Standalone) networks, which are being deployed globally.
Networks Which Accept eSIM Cards
eSIM is offered by a few carriers. Either a carrier’s app or a QR Code that you can scan are required. Once more, the carrier must support eSIM.
In the UK, eSIM is supported by EE, O2, Vodafone, and Three, albeit at the moment only Apple Watch is supported by Vodafone.
Typically, users merely need to stop by a nearby store, call customer care, or download an eSIM to obtain an eSIM pack.
Let’s examine the EE SIM pack. With EE, you may get a SIM pack that appears traditional from a shop like the one shown above. However, there is no SIM inside; instead, you receive instructions and a QR code that your device can use to access the information. In the same way as a standard SIM pack does, each eSIM pack has its own unique number.
AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon Wireless all support eSIM in the US.
“Global mobile network” Truphone has started offering eSIM data plans independent of the established carriers. These can be purchased using the MyTruphone app. The worldwide plans from Truphone are compatible with 80 nations, including those in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia.
Originally only available on iOS, the software is now also usable with Pixel phones on Android. For a limited time, Truphone is giving new users 100MB of data for free to try out the app.
The Benefits of eSIM for Frequent Travelers
Theoretically, using an eSIM should allow you to continue using your primary “home” number when traveling to another nation by simply adding a roaming eSIM to your phone. One drawback at the moment is that you can’t access your own number, for example, if you switch SIM cards when traveling abroad.
eSIMs might do away with international roaming fees, according to Steve Alder of Truphone. “It also allows users to swiftly switch between operators to reconnect if they are in a signal-poor location, frees up space for new features or more battery life, and may reduce the danger of device theft.
“Mass adoption of eSIMs will be inevitable as customers and operators begin to recognize the benefits.”
What Does eSIM Mean for devices?
One benefit it gives phone manufacturers is that because a SIM card or the tray that contains it don’t need to be accommodated, we should get smaller smartphones. Additionally, networks are not required to produce or distribute a large number of SIM cards.
In addition, eSIMs will be fantastic for tablets and laptops, where seamless connectivity will become standard.
Because eSIMs don’t take up as much space within a gadget, fitness trackers or even glasses will now be able to have stand-alone 4G or 5G connectivity, which they just weren’t able do before, according to Vodafone.
How Would eSIM Function in Real Life?
To find out how it would function with eSIM, we chatted with EE. The network informed us that your iPhone will simultaneously display both networks on the screen if you have both a physical and an eSIM provisioned and are connected to two different networks.
Customers can receive calls and messages on both numbers if the handset is in standby and both the SIM and eSIM are provisioned. You can then select a “default” line to use for calls, SMS, iMessage, and FaceTime, as shown in the instructions below. The other line is only used for voice and SMS.
If you’re traveling and utilizing a local data eSIM, you can also select to Use Secondary for cellular data only.
While more than one eSIM can be stored in your iPhone, only one can be used at once.
By selecting Settings > Cellular > Cellular Plans and then selecting the desired plan, you can change eSIMs. In the UK, it’s called mobile data. Next, select Turn On This Line.
How to Utilize An iPhone That is Compatible With eSIM
A QR code, if you have one
- Select Cellular under Settings.
2. Tab to add a cellular plan.
- Scan the QR code your carrier gave using your iPhone; you might be prompted to provide an activation code.
As An Alternative
You could be required to use a carrier app to activate your eSIM:
- Visit the App Store and download the app for your carrier.
- Purchase a cellular plan via the app.
- Next, as explained below, you’ll add the Data Plan to your iPhone’s settings.
The Truphone app has the following functionality: choose the desired plan and pay with Apple Pay. The plan will then be picked up by the phone’s Settings app, so you’ll need to select Add data plan.
Labeling your plans is also a good idea under Cellular Settings. You can modify the label of a number by tapping it. Then select a new label or enter a custom label by tapping Cellular Plan Label.