What is eSIM and how eSIM works?

Several different people around the world are looking for what is eSIM and how to use eSIM with their phones

Have you heard about eSIM, or are you aware of the innovative eSIM technology sweeping Europe? Well, if not, this post will help you to get up to speed on one of the latest and greatest telecom developments in recent years.

The eSIM has already greatly impacted smartphone users and promises to revolutionize our mobile network experience like never before – so what exactly does it do?

In this post, let’s discuss everything from how the eSIM card works and its capabilities to which phones offer eSIM support in Europe. By exploring all these topics, you’ll come away with a full understanding of all things eSIM!

So, let’s get started with the basics of eSIM.

A stack of SIM cards to explaining the evolution of SIM card and what is eSIM

What is eSIM?

eSIM is a modern alternative to traditional physical sim cards. It is a miniature chip embedded permanently inside the device that stores mobile network profile details, simplifying switching networks or changing SIM cards.

It’s a virtual sim card that allows users to store multiple mobile network profiles on their devices. You can switch between different operators without changing the physical sim card.

eSIM technology is becoming increasingly popular in modern-day mobile devices. This type of SIM allows users to securely store their subscription information for the service provider on their device rather than having physical cards inserted that could easily be lost or damaged.

This is attractive to many users because of its embedded and permanent nature – you can switch service providers without inserting any actual hardware.

In addition, the eSIM allows a single device to have multiple subscriptions under different service providers, making it easy to use your phone while traveling internationally without incurring roaming fees.

Besides, eSIM technology is becoming an essential component of smart devices, and it looks set to revolutionize the cellular industry moving forward.

Meaning of the word “eSIM”

The word “eSIM” stands for “embedded subscriber identity module” which was invented by the GSMA to enable SIM provisioning remotely in digital devices.

Besides, if we talk about the technical term, an eSIM is a SIM card that resides in the device but can be reprogrammed with different network profiles remotely. In other words, it is a SIM card that can be installed in a digital way without switching SIM cards physically.

The continuous rise of eSIM

eSIM technology has gained tremendous popularity in Europe over the last few years due to its convenience, flexibility, and security features. It is becoming increasingly prevalent among customers wanting a hassle-free way to connect their devices with multiple service providers.

For instance, the Seimas (Unicameral parliament of Lithuania EU) announced that the new mobile phones could have eSIM support from 2021 onwards as part of the Radio Equipment Directive. 

This made it easy for mobile device manufacturers to include eSIM support on their devices if they are sold within Lithuania or the EU, making Lithuania the first country in the EU to regulate the eSIM.

Moreover, with eSIM services, you can be connected to each country’s best network providers seamlessly, such as in the UK – EE, H3G, France – Orange, SFR and Free Mobile, Italy – Wind and Iliad Italy, Spain – Yoigo and Orange, etc. That is why eSIM is becoming increasingly popular in Europe and looks set to bring huge changes to the telecom industry.

With the continuous rise of eSIM, everyone should become more aware of its capabilities and take advantage of its convenience.

Let’s discuss how eSIM works to help you understand more about this technology.

How does eSIM work?

eSIM works differently than traditional physical SIM cards. Instead of inserting a physical card into your device, the eSIM is permanently embedded by the manufacturer and contains all the necessary information for connecting to a mobile network. 

It is programmed remotely with the correct settings, making it easier to switch carriers or manage multiple cellular lines.

When users want to connect with a secondary cellular profile, they have to access the settings menu on their device and select the eSIM profile they wish to use. It allows users to connect to the network without any physical card change.

Overall, eSIM technology is becoming increasingly popular as it makes it easier for users to easily switch between providers without worrying about the physical card getting lost or damaged.

So now you know how eSIM works. However, you must be wondering about Dual SIM. Let’s discuss this in detail.

Trying to use Whatsapp and social media apps with eSIM and figure out how eSIM works

What is Dual SIM, and how does Dual SIM work?

While there are varying degrees of simplification for certain phones, it’s generally quite straightforward. In the most basic terms, a dual-SIM device allows you to use two separate network providers from the same phone.

This can be done through two physical SIMs or an eSIM, becoming increasingly popular as consumer demands rise and technology advances. 

With an eSIM model, users don’t even have to worry about physically switching their network provider out — they only need to change a setting or two within the device itself.

This shows that eSIM is better than a traditional SIM card regarding flexibility. Furthermore, with dual-SIM devices, you can use two different numbers on the same phone and have them associated with separate providers. 

Also, this makes it easier for users to manage multiple accounts without carrying around multiple phones.

There are lots of mobile phones in the market that support dual SIM capability with eSIM support. Apple has been providing dual SIM with eSIM support on their recent mobile phones like iPhone XS to iPhone 14 series. (The USA version of iPhone 14 series only enables eSIM feature without SIM cards.)

Besides, eSIM makes dual SIM capability more convenient, especially for frequent travelers. This is because it is easier to access different international network providers and access data from anywhere in the world without having to purchase and install a new SIM card physically.

Why do we have to use eSIM?

Well, there are many benefits of using eSIM for everyone out there. Let’s discuss some of the benefits in detail.

  • Easy to purchase & receive & activate

    Using an eSIM is much simpler and more convenient than purchasing a physical SIM card. You don’t need to go through any lengthy process or wait in line at the store or airport; you can purchase the eSIM connection online. Some eSIM providers require App downloading, but providers like eSIM Europe will deliver eSIM to your email instantly as you place an order. Once you activate the eSIM, you can start using it right away. But on the other hand, physical SIM cards require that you purchase the card in person, wait for it to arrive via post or pick it up from a store, and then manually install it on your device. This can be time-consuming and inconvenient.

  • No need to swap and keep physical SIM cards

    With eSIM, you don’t need to worry about carrying physical SIM cards. This makes switching providers or managing multiple accounts much easier and more convenient.You can also keep multiple eSIMs in one device, allowing you to access different networks easily. On the other hand, if you used physical SIMs, you would need to manually swap the cards each time you wanted to use data from another network or another country.

  • Keep your original number

    By using an eSIM, you don’t need to worry about missing calls or texts with your original number, especially when traveling abroad. Even if you select to use data from the local provider, you can keep using your phone number as the default voice line. 

  • Purchase with a reasonable price compares to roaming

    eSIMs allow you to access cheaper international data plans than traditional auto-roaming plans. This makes it ideal for frequent travelers who need to stay connected while on the go and also could help you to save a lot of money in the long run.

  • Stay eco-friendly

    Using eSIMs helps to reduce electronic waste, as you don’t need to purchase physical SIM cards. This is beneficial for the environment and could help reduce the amount of plastic pollution.

    These are some of the main benefits of using an eSIM for dual-SIM devices. These advantages make it easy to see why eSIM is becoming increasingly popular.

Which is better? eSIM vs. Physical SIM

After knowing the benefits of using eSIM, the question is – which one should you choose: eSIM or Physical SIM? (If you want to know about it more in detail, read our article about eSIM vs Physical SIM)

You can look at the comparison chart between eSIM and Physical SIM’s main features so that you can make a more informed choice.

eSIM vs. Physical SIM main feature comparison table

FeatureseSIMPhysical SIM
Size6mm x 5mm (Embedded)12.3mm x 8.8mm (Nano SIM)
FlexibilityCan switch carriers without changing cardsNeed to physically change the card to switch carriers
CostCost for cellular plan onlyCost for cellular plan, delivery, and physical SIM card plate
Activation & InstallationScanning the QR code or Inserting codes manuallyTaking out original SIM Card and replacing with a new SIM card with pin
Storage CapacityMultiple network profiles on one deviceOnly one network profile per physical card
PortabilityRemotely transferablePhysically transferred 
Roaming ChargesCan be avoided by controlling international roaming availabilityCan be charged for international roaming
DurabilityNot susceptible to physical damageSusceptible to physical damage
Future ReadyCompatible with upcoming 5G technologyIt may not be compatible with 5G technology

As you can see from this guide, there are many good reasons to start using eSIMs instead of physical SIM cards. eSIMs are more convenient, eco-friendly, and often cheaper than their physical counterparts. 

5 Most Frequently Asked Questions about eSIM

Going through the above-given details, there must be some questions in your mind. So, here are 5 most common questions regarding eSIMs:

  1. Which devices are compatible with eSIM?

    eSIM technology has become an increasingly popular form of connecting to wireless networks in the last few years, and as a result, many devices released after 2019 are now compatible with it. This includes smartphones, tablets, wearables, and other connected devices. Please make sure to check if your device is compatible in the compatible device list before placing an order.

  2. When should I buy eSIM? Before the trip or After arrival?

    It doesn’t matter when you purchase an eSIM, because eSIM validity will start as soon as you install the QR code. 
    There are advantages to buying an eSIM before. If you purchase before the journey, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that you’re ready to hit the ground running upon arrival and can stay connected from the jump without needing to leave your hotel.
    In either case, activation is always quick and easy as the eSIM only requires a few minutes to set up.

  3. How much does it cost to use eSIM?

    If you want to purchase an eSIM, you’ll be happy to hear that it’s relatively inexpensive. Without needing to pay a delivery fee and a physical SIM card, an eSIM will likely be equal to or even cheaper than one would need to shell out for a physical SIM card.
    However, the exact price of an eSIM will depend on two factors – how much data it consumes and how long you use it. All in all, if you’re looking for convenient and low-cost international roaming rates, then an eSIM is surely worth considering.

  4. Which carrier will I be connected with eSIM?

    When choosing an eSIM, you can take comfort in knowing that you will be connected to the best network service available. The carrier depends on which eSIM plan you are using and which country you are traveling to. If you have any preference of a local network carrier, you can check it in detail by asking Team eSIM Europe.

  5. How long does it take to receive eSIM?

    Acquiring an eSIM is easier and more convenient than ever with the innovations of the digital age. It takes only a few short moments to purchase an eSIM from a reputable online store, such as https://europeesim.com/.
    Upon ordering your eSIM plan, an email will be sent to you with your new mobile service information blazingly fast, generally within 5 minutes. Then all that there’s left for you to do is activate the SIM card in your device and start using it!

Using eSIM for International / European travel

Travel to Europe can be made easier and much more enjoyable with the use of eSIM technology. Using eSIM allows travelers to enjoy seamless network connection regardless of which country they visit – no more exchanging SIM cards for each country! 

With the help of an eSIM Europe Plan, travelers don’t have to worry about incurring extra roaming charges as it provides them with a stable and cost-effective data plan for their entire trip. An unlimited data plan also gives people access to all their favorite streaming services when traveling. 

Using eSIM will make a traveler’s life much more hassle-free when traveling through different European countries.

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