Whether you are traveling for work or pleasure, staying in touch with business partners, colleagues, and loved ones is very important. Nevertheless, it can also be a real pain because of the hefty phone bills thanks to international data roaming and service, as well as the difficulty of video calls over a slow internet connection. Embedded subscriber identity module (eSIM) data plans offer the perfect solution for this issue, providing mobile data in any location at a reasonable price.
Getting an eSIM data plan is an easy, convenient, and cost-efficient solution that can make a huge difference for businesses, especially those hoping to grow globally. The eSIM card is a digital equivalent of the conventional plastic SIM card, which also makes it an environmentally friendlier option. Complete with phone numbers and data plans, they function through a microchip that is embedded in your mobile device and the good news is that more and more devices are compatible with digital card technology or eSIM cards.
You can use your data plan immediately after obtaining it, without having to go to the store to get an actual card.
Read on for more information about eSIM data plans, and how they can be more convenient, economical, and forward-thinking than using several SIM cards while traveling internationally.
What Is an eSIM?
Simply put, eSIMs are virtual SIM cards integrated into the hardware (a programmable chip) of your smartphone or any other mobile device, which means that you don’t have to visit a store or put any physical card in any slot. This is why they are referred to as eSIM, which stands for embedded SIM rather than electronic SIM. They allow you to use the same number on your smartphone, watch, vehicle, or even the fridge in your house.
If we keep in mind that the conventional plastic SIM is a memory chip, with relatively little data capacity, then things become clearer. The operator can use these details to verify the phone line’s existence and verify its connectivity to other systems.
Understanding an eSIM requires first being familiar with its differences from a SIM card. Using a SIM card, a carrier can associate a certain mobile device with a specific user account. The provider will issue a SIM card that must be physically inserted into the device. This way you register it and the phone number is activated. Information stored on a SIM card can’t be deleted or altered in any way once written to the card. However, the SIM can be used in any other compatible device without changing the user’s phone number. Similarly, eSIMs incorporate their circuitry inside a user’s device.
Unlike a regular SIM card, an embedded SIM is permanently attached to the device and you can only use it on that device. However, an eSIM’s contents can be edited. You can change mobile carriers without having to purchase a new SIM.
Devices that support eSIMs still support regular SIM cards, which is great for business owners looking for a second number for work. You can simultaneously use your current number and a business number provided by your eSIM data plan.
What Are the Advantages of eSIM?
Similar to prepaid data-only plans, eSIM data plans can be downloaded directly to an eSIM-compatible device. Some service providers offer app-based eSIM activation, and others provide a code that can be scanned to activate the plan. With an eSIM data plan you don’t have to look for a local SIM card but rather simply immediately begin using the local data service at the local pricing. The app will then allow you to choose your location and find the plan that suits your needs best, after which it will guide you through the easy-to-follow activation process.
Each eSIM data subscription does not come with a new local phone number. If your phone supports dual SIM cards, however, you can keep your current number while accessing the internet via your eSIM. It’s a clever method to avoid the steep international roaming charges. Even if your phone doesn’t support dual SIMs, you can still make calls with popular messaging apps like WhatsApp and Telegram. All of your phone’s original features should still be there.
Plastic SIM cards have shrunk in size over the years, starting with the larger classic SIM, progressing to the smaller microSIM, and now the smallest nanoSIM. And despite their smaller sizes, they can store more and more data. Mobile phones have undergone a technical revolution trying to accommodate their shrinking sizes.
The nanoSIM used in newer mobile devices has nearly no plastic covering left, and an eSIM-compatible mobile device’s embedded chip is even smaller. So using them is also better for the environment. Depending on the device, eSIMs can support up to twenty “eSIM profiles,” each of which can have its own unique phone number and data plan. They can be installed in a wide variety of always-online electronics, including smartphones, watches, and fitness trackers, as well as in home and auto appliances.
How to Set Up an eSIM?
Setting up an eSIM is easy and convenient since it can be done from anywhere using the device camera to scan a code. Depending on the phone and whether you are using an Android or iOS mobile, the virtual card setup process is completed by following a series of steps that include choosing whether the eSIM is disconnected for calls and data or data only, and also choosing if the eSIM card works as a single line or together with another line, both in another eSIM profile and a conventional SIM card. If your phone has more than one line, you’ll need to decide which one will be your primary line and which will be your backup.
You can set up an eSIM in various ways, and depending on the settings, it can communicate with domestic or international service providers. A handy function for business trips, which will help you avoid unexpectedly high phone bills.