eSIM is a built-in electronic SIM card. The symbol “e” means “embedded” (built-in, embedded).
The module is non-replaceable, but it can be programmed to work with different operators. You can configure several profiles, and then switch between them in a couple of taps.
Devices with only the built-in eSIM module, for example, Apple Watch 3/4, allow you to use one phone number. Devices with eSIM and a physical SIM card slot (iPhone XS / XR / XS Max) can simultaneously work with a pair of SIM cards: physical and integrated eSIM.
One radio module in the smartphone imposes restrictions on use. During a call from one SIM card, the second one will be unavailable, you can also use a mobile Internet connection only in turn.
How eSIM differs from Apple SIM
In fact, Apple SIM is a reusable SIM card that is not tied to any operator. Through the device’s settings, you can switch between operators and tariffs without changing a physical SIM card.
A great idea for travelers and those who often travel to different countries and regions. We select the appropriate tariff and apply it directly in the settings.
The service already works in more than 90 countries of the world. Of course, it is not supported by all mobile operators.
Domestic operators are bypassing Apple SIM, and international GigSky is working in our country. His prices are so-so:
Now these cards are installed in the Apple Watch with LTE support and the new iPhone XS / XR / XS Max (our review here). The module allows you to connect a full-fledged tariff with Internet and voice communication to the device.
What are the benefits of eSIM
In addition, with a complete rejection of the SIM card slot in the device’s case, it will become one hole smaller. At the same time, dust and moisture protection will improve, production costs will decrease.
The user will also receive solid benefits: there is no need to replace the card, you can easily change operators and tariffs without visiting offices and retail points of sale.
What is the situation with eSIM in Russia
Now the SIM card in the Russian Federation is assigned to the user in the subscription agreement. The eSIM feature with a change of operator at any time allows you to actually violate the terms of the contract – and not even notify the “opsos” about this.
A similar situation is observed not only with us. Currently, only eSIM can be used in Austria, the United Kingdom, Hungary, Germany, India, Spain, Canada, the USA, Croatia and the Czech Republic.
These countries do not prohibit the use of eSIM. Even so, not all operators support it.
It turns out that for a start the technology must be approved by the Russian authorities. Then it should become beneficial for our mobile operators, otherwise they will not lift a finger to support it. And only then we can hope for the appearance of eSIM support in Russia.
Alas, but apparently, this year the situation will not change. So, you will not see the Apple Watch Series 4 in a steel case and with an LTE module in the Russian market.