An embedded-SIM (eSIM) or embedded universal integrated circuit card (eUICC) is a form of programmable SIM card that is embedded directly into a device. In machine-to-machine applications, where there is no requirement to change the SIM card, this avoids the requirement for a connector. An eSIM can be provisioned remotely; end-users can add or remove operators without the need to physically swap a SIM from the device. An eSIM is basically a small chip inside your phone and works in a similar way to the NFC chip that’s used for payment techs like Apple Pay and Google Pay. eSIM needs to be supported by the network or carrier and enabled by them and not all networks support eSIM as yet.
Which devices support eSIM?
Apple offers dual SIM support for the iPhone XS and XS Max and iPhone XR as well as the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max. Apple has turned to eSIM for other devices like iPad Pro, Apple Watch Series 3 and Watch Series 4, and Series 5.
Google’s Pixel 2 Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL and Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL & Pixel 4a support eSIM.
The Samsung Galaxy S20, S20+, and S20 Ultra also have eSIM available.
eSIM also supports Windows 10 and some devices with cellular modems such as Qualcomm Snapdragon-powered PCs. it can use eSIM as an alternative to sticking a traditional microSIM in the slot.
Which networks support eSIM?
eSIM is currently available from selected carriers. So you’ll need to have a carrier’s app or a QR Code you can scan.
In the United Kingdom, we have EE, O2, Three, and Vodafone support eSIM. Vodafone is currently only supporting it for Apple Watch.
O2 recently launched eSIM on compatible Apple and Pixel phones. To get eSIM, customers can visit a local store, call customer services or simply register online to get one.
EE provides the eSIM in a traditional-looking SIM pack from a store. But there will be no SIM in it. instead, you will get instructions and a QR code enabling your device to pick up the details. Each eSIM pack comes with its own number just like a traditional SIM pack.
In the US, AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon Wireless support eSIM.
What are the benefits of eSIM?
eSIM gives a better experience for device owners. You’ll be able to change carriers without having to get a new SIM. You can change carriers or your plan in your phone settings.So you don’t need to deal with cutting SIM cards or finding adapters.
With eSIMs and dual SIMS options available in the device, you can have two plans from two different carriers. So that you can use one number for business and another number for personal calls. Also, you can add a local data plan when you travel outside of the country or region and can have a separate voice, text, and data plans.
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