Before jumping straight to the topic eSIM, let’s frist understand what a SIM is. SIM stands for subscriber identity module that basically consists of the data and information required for authenticating your identity to a carrier.
In short, SIM card informs your identity to your carrier and without it you would not be able to use their cell towers as the carrier is not aware that you are subscribed to their network.
Currently, the technology is at its emergence and several phones are being introduced with the feature of eSIM such as Motorola Razr, iPhone 11 Pro, and Pixel 4. So, here we’ll discuss eSIM and its pros & cons in detail.
eSIM stands for embedded or electronic SIM. eSIM is smaller in size than normal size and behaves similar to a normal SIM. Instead of a physical card, eSIM comes inbuilt in your phone. There is a microchip which is used to verify your authenticity with your carrier.
The technology supports multiple accounts and switching in between is vary easy. So, dual-SIM users do not need to worry for that. With the eSIM technology, phones have some additional settings which enable users to switch between carriers and lines and manage accounts effectively.
The very first eSIM-only phone has been unveiled under the brand name of Motorola Razr flip-phone. One of the first phones to support eSIM technology was Google Pixel 2. A particular application is available on Google Play Store to manage the technology.
Later, apple launched iPhone XS along with the feature the support both eSIM and physical SIM. Though, the eSIM option was the secondary one and can be enabled only after iOS software update. The eSIM technology has several advantages which is leading to rising adoption across the globe.
The technology helps in turning the devices such as phones, wearable devices, and others into a smaller version. Recently, Apple launched Apple Watch Series 4 and 5 with eSIMs with minimized size.
List of Devices that Supports eSIM
- Apple Watch Series 3, 4, and 5 (with dual SIM support)
- iPhone 11
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone XS
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XR
- Pixel 2 (Currently, only used for Google FI in the U.S.)
- Pixel 3
- Pixel 4
- Pixel 4XL
- Moto Razr flip phone
“Windows 10 is also compatible with eSIM. Also, some devices with cellular modems like Qualcomm Snapdragon 850-powered PCs are designed to use eSIM as an alterative to its traditional counterpart i.e. a microchip in a slot.”
List of Networks that Supports eSIM
Currently, the technology is available for selected carriers. However, the list is anticipated to grow rapidly. The consumer needs either a QR code to scan or a carrier’s app. Again, the carrier must support the technology.
In United Kingdom, Vodafone, O2, and EE supports eSIM. Although, Vodafone current offers the technology only for Apple watch series. O2 recently unveiled eSIM technology compatible with Pixel and Apple phones. As per the company, the consumer is supposed to download or get an eSIM pack only in the local stores or they need to call customer care to avail these services.
Furthermore, with the EE SIM pack, the consumer gets a QR code to enable their device to pick up the details. Each pack has its own number similar to traditional SIM cards. In United States, Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile USA, and AT&T offers eSIM data packs.
Truphone offers eSIM data plans which could be bought via the MyTruphone app. These packs can be used across 80 countries including Australia, Americas, and Europe. The MyTruphone app was originally designed for iOS but now its available for Android as well.
Best time to start using eSIM
It might take some time for realizing full potential of eSIM as it’s new in emerging economies. But consumers can take its advantage with the right service or phone. Some of the leading smartphone manufacturers including Google and Apple have already started implementing it in their newer releases.
Other companies are also anticipated to follow them at a global scale. The technology has gained traction in American countries like United States. For instance, In the U.S. several companies including Ubigi, AT&T, Truphone, Verizon, and T-Mobile offers e-SIM support. If you are planning for a phone upgrade, you should definitely check out options for both eSIM compatible service carriers and smartphones.
Furthermore, the technology is anticipated to gain popularity among new generation LTE-connected computers. The first LTE computers were emerged in 2018 and companies are planning to invest significantly in product innovation and make new additions in their existing portfolio.
The technology is projected to take over the world and replace the traditional SIM cards gradually in forthcoming years owing to several advantages associated with it. For instance, the technology provides the facility to eliminate roaming charges abroad and consumers can switch operators quickly on case of weak signal areas.
Additionally, it comes with enhanced battery life, lower risk of device theft, and frees up space for new features or services. Moreover, these SIMs are a great choice for travelling to another country. You just need to add a roaming eSIM to your handset.
In spite of several advantages the consumers might face some difficulties in terms of choice while using eSIM. If a phone is designed for excusive purpose then the possibility of pre-loaded network is higher rather than being open for all.
What are your views on eSIM technology? Can it be considered as next generation of SIM cards? What are your views on it, let us know in comment box 😊