There are good reasons to be excited about eSIMs, but be wary of getting caught in the hype over aspirational tech and missing opportunities in front of you here and now.
Let’s take a close look at eSIMs: what they are, when they’ll be available, and whether they live up to the hype surrounding them.
Because they’re part of the device and software-based, an eSIM can change its operator profile. Unlike regular SIMs, which always correspond to a particular operator even if they’re unsteered, eSIMs wear operator profiles like outfits—and you can change them at will. Great for roaming.
Confusingly, the term ‘eSIMs’ is sometimes used to refer to any SIM that’s provisionable over the air. This is incorrect—think of it as a slang term that’s spread through the industry.
Depending on your provider, you can provision regular plastic SIMs remotely too. For example, all of our Multi-network SIMs can be configured and updated remotely, without the need to visit the solution site and tinker with the physical SIM card.
Above all, eSIMs’ main defining trait is that they’re embedded in their devices. The remote provisioning capability is awesome, but not unique to them.
If you own a device with an optional inbuilt eSIM, like a dual-SIM phone, then you can download eSIM profiles to it. Otherwise, you can’t add eSIM capabilities to your device.
You don’t need eSIMs for best-in-class Multi-network connectivity. Unsteered Multi-network 4G, where the SIM connects to the strongest network it can find, is available for regular plastic SIMs and every device on the market.
And Multi-network SIMs can also be provisioned remotely; so you can use a physical SIM with the ability to swap networks or run software updates without having to go to the site and manually do it yourself.
eSIMs and Multi-network connectivity are a cool combination, but neither requires the other.
eSIMs are typically related to high volumes of moving devices. All that can still be achieved with current capabilities without eSIMs; you just need a Multi-net SIM.
Your goal—and our responsibility as your partner—is to grow your revenue. While keeping an eye on eSIMs is important, it’s more important to uncover opportunities that can bring you ROI right now, and capitalise on what’s already in the market.
In some ways, eSIMs are similar to 5G; they’re both innovative new technologies that will set an entirely new standard in the industry, yet haven’t quite reached their full potential.
5G is a hot topic with end-users. It does combine with its predecessor, 4G Multi-network, to create incredible new solutions. Network providers are racing to provide support for it.
Stay aware of industry research, talk to your provider, let your customers know that eSIMs are on your radar; but continue to focus on the connectivity tech that will bring you tangible ROI here and now. Make sure your 4G Multi-network play is up to scratch—with its unbeatable resilience and flexibility, it should be the bread and butter in your mobile connectivity sales.
If you need eSIMs right now, we can provide them. But it’s very likely that your solution will work just as well with 4G Multi-network SIMs (and likely cost you far less, too).