eSIM has been all the rage since Apple announced its new iPhone XS and XS Max would have the feature included in them when they were released last September.
Not all carriers and smartphones offer the service yet, but it’s likely they will begin to incorporate it into future releases.
While eSIM may sound complicated, it’s really not. It simply stands for an embedded SIM card, meaning the device has no physical SIM card within it. As a result, this means it’s not necessary to swap out a physical card from a phone if someone wishes to switch carriers or phone numbers that are on the device itself.
For eSIM to work, not only must the device support the technology, but the carrier must as well. The eSIM is re-writeable, meaning the information on it can be changed with a call to the phone operator or wireless carrier.
The eSIM is also much smaller than traditional SIM cards, which gives manufacturers the opportunity to do more with less, so to speak, in design.
But what does eSIM mean for the everyday customer and his or her experience?
Here are five ways in which eSIM could greatly impact the customer experience.
1. eSim Will Make Things Quicker
Nowadays, everyone wants the simplest and easiest solution to just about everything. No one wants to go through a laborious process to do anything, even if that process is technically complicated. This is one area in which eSIM can play a big part.
eSIM can simplify the operators’ logistics, allowing for a quick and easy transition from one mobile carrier to the next with a few clicks instead of the complicated practice of switching SIM cards or, worse, using an adapter if the SIM cards between two devices, for example, are different sizes.
2. eSIM Will Connect More Devices
Because of the smaller size of eSIMs, the possibilities are literally endless. The Apple Watch has had this capability since Series 3, and soon rings and wristbands will eventually have the ability to connect via eSIM, allowing customers to connect more devices through their wireless carriers with ease.
In addition to connecting already smaller devices than a smartphone, it could allow manufacturers to eventually produce even smaller, or rather slimmer, devices than are available now. This could mean smaller tablets and laptops, too, that will have the ability to connect via the smaller eSIM.
3. eSIM Makes Traveling Easier
This aspect of eSIM is particularly attractive to people who do a lot of traveling abroad. An eSIM would eliminate the necessity of changing SIM cards when people are traveling overseas, which, in effect, removes the ability for that person to connect to their own cellphone number when they are traveling abroad.
With eSIM, a person should be able to theoretically add a roaming plan to the device while still retaining their original cellphone number. As business, and society in general, becomes more global, this feature of eSIM could become even more attractive in the future than it is today.
In addition to being convenient, this feature makes traveling much safer, as users don’t have to worry about connecting to random Wifi networks, instead relying on the much more secure mobile networks, especially with the advent of 5G. Security of mobile networks is much higher than that of public Wifi networks.
4. eSIM Allows for Multiple Network Connections
Another fascinating aspect of eSIM is the ability to provision a device to two different networks and, therefore, two different numbers. If a device has both an eSIM and a physical SIM card, users would have the ability to provision both and have the device display both networks at the same time.
This is exactly how the newest iPhones work today. Users can receive calls and text messages to two different numbers, theoretically on two different wireless network carriers if they wanted. One line could be provisioned as the default, with the other serving as backup.
A practical use of this could be having a personal and business phone line that work seamlessly on the same smartphone, without the need to use any third-party app.
5. Managing IT Becomes Easier
From a corporate perspective, managing users and employees becomes a much easier task for IT. No longer does IT have to swap in and out SIM cards for new and departed employees. Instead, IT managers can manage all various profiles via eSIM remotely and have new employees up and running in minutes – or have old employees removed entirely from the system without having to get a physical device from them.
The benefits of eSIM extend far beyond these five areas. In reality, the true power of eSIM isn’t known yet; not all manufacturers, devices and mobile network carriers offer the technology. But once eSIM does become more omnipresent, which is inevitable in the near future, the true possibilities of what the technology can provide will be seen.