The eSIM technology has been around for quite some time. The acronym eSIM stands for Embedded Subscribers Identity Module. Unlike conventional SIM cards, eSIM cards do not have a physical form factor. Instead, they are embedded in the circuitry of a smartphone. The eSIM allows a user to access telecommunication services without the need of inserting a physical SIM card into the SIM card slot.
In order to use eSIM, both the service provider and the smartphone of the user shall support the functionality. Since it is relatively new communication technology, very few smartphones support it. In India, there are limited smartphones that support an eSIM. Entry-level smartphones manufactured by various brands do not support an eSIM and this includes almost all the smartphones that are priced below Rs. 30,000 in India. Flagships smartphones such as the Apple iPhone series, Samsung Galaxy S20 and S21 series and Google Pixel series support eSIM.
As the name suggests, an eSIM is an electronic form of a traditional SIM card that is embedded into a smartphone’s motherboard. In other words, an eSIM is a digital SIM card. Traditionally, SIM Cards are small physical chip that holds subscribers information and allows the subscribers to connect to other users on the network by accessing the telecommunication service. While an eSIM offers similar services, it eliminates the need for a subscriber to use a physical SIM card. Additionally, since traditional SIM cards are made up of plastic, eSIMs are eco-friendly.
As mentioned earlier, both the smartphone and the service provider shall support the functionality, otherwise, a user will not be able to use eSIM. There are certain advantages of using an eSIM over a physical SIM. For instance, eSIM saves the space occupied by SIM card trays. For people who travel across the world, having an eSIM can save their troubles of getting a physical SIM every time they land into new territory. Additionally, a user can never lose an eSIM, as it does not have a physical form.
Talking about service providers that allow users to use an eSIM, the three leading telecom operators in the country – Reliance Jio, Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel offer eSIM functionality. If a user has a smartphone that supports eSIM and wants to activate an eSIM, they can follow the steps on the official website of all three telecom providers. Given below are the links to the eSIM guide for all three companies. Keep in mind that the activation procedure differs from company to company. Further, it also differs from the OS on a smartphone.
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