Impact of eSIMs on Telecom Sector | eSIM Plus

Explore how eSIM impacts global connectivity, offering flexibility, security, and eco-friendly solutions for telecom.

How do you envision eSIM technology transforming global connectivity and communication in the next decade?

From its initial days of powering the communication needs of IoT devices, eSims have come a long way in emerging as a mainstream telecom product. What’s helped most is the technology behind eSims: robust and time-tested for a user-determined market. This is helping democratise telecom and set up a concrete roadmap to unite big and small players on a level platform. The end result is greater flexibility and more affordable pricing for the end consumer. 

In terms of implementation speed, eSim service providers are agile and hold the potential to enter into strategic partnerships with technology providers. Some of these moves can enable telecom access in remote locations where traditional telecom is yet to penetrate, as well as in regions facing conflicts and natural disasters. This has numerous applications, including the provision of a mobile number to access basic financial services. 

The biggest adoption trend being witnessed is among the traveler community, for whom eSims offer a real-time solution to their roaming needs. Travelers can easily switch between voice and data plans, instead of having to physically visit stores and change sim cards at every port of call. 

Major smartphone manufacturers are already shifting to eSims for their devices, and the coming decade is thus rightly poised to see greater advancements as newer service-focused players disrupt several aspects of user experience by riding on existing telecom infrastructure. This will lead to better synergy between traditional telcos and new entrants, paving the way for improved market access and increased consumer choices.. 

Can you discuss the role of eSIM in the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) and its impact on various industries like automotive, healthcare, and smart homes?

Globally, eSim adoption is set to touch 371% over the next three years. This, coupled with its easy integration with the latest telecom tech such as 5G, means that eSims will be the future of telecommunications. In a way, the growth of smart devices is directly proportional to the robust communications technology that the telecom industry has enabled down the years. As a carrier or medium of information transfer, eSims have always facilitated the transfer of critical messaging across two points in an industry & consumer-friendly way. 

It further helps that eSims are easier to diagnose and fix, as well as offer switching between operator networks between regions. This means lesser physical load on man management and anytime, anywhere reliability. Something that the future of IoT devices in industries like automation, healthcare, and home security will require to be seen as foolproof and 100% secure.

What are the biggest challenges and opportunities you see in the widespread adoption of eSIM technology, particularly in terms of infrastructure and regulatory aspects?

eSims offer a certain level of security and privacy, which, although an asset for users, can get in the way of law enforcement. This may give it a bad rep among regulators, especially in countries where cases of bad actors are forcing governments to implement stricter protection measures. As we are now seeing, a mobile number is central to financial transactions, and with eSims thus playing a role in facilitating the same easily, the lack of robust KYC guidelines can bypass necessary AML/CFT regulations. This is bound to put a brake on rapid eSim adoption globally. As with any new technology, there is bound to be a slew of bad actors, and in this era of increasing cybercrime, eSim companies will have to be self-aware and guard against any form of misuse. This is to ensure the sector’s progress so far does not meet roadblocks in some of the top global economies, which also happen to be hubs of financial services. 

Furthermore, while access to data services seems simpler, gaining a virtual number of any country requires eSim service providers to apply for country-to-country approvals. It is thus up to all stakeholders of the eSim ecosystem to work in tandem to create a uniform and acceptable operational code.

In what ways does eSIM technology offer enhanced security features compared to traditional SIM cards, and how important is this for consumer and enterprise users?

eSim technology is cloud-native, meaning that it offers greater flexibility, affordability, and security, as well as ease of switching between networks globally at the click of a button. This is definitely a benefit for retail and enterprise customers, who can take advantage of real-time customer support and anytime backup to stay connected. That being said, anything on the cloud is prone to continuous cyber threats, due to which heightened surveillance is the need of the hour. As smaller, more service-focused companies enter the space, there will arise a need for stronger security features connecting the back and front ends. This is to ensure the technology is transparent and protects user privacy, without becoming a data management threat. The good news is that the confidence shown in eSim technology by major telecom and device manufacturers reflects the sector’s pace of innovation on all fronts. Furthermore, the increasing number of partnerships between eSim service providers, local network providers and technology enablers is helping address the trust gap.

Could you elaborate on how eSIM technology contributes to environmental sustainability and the reduction of electronic waste?

As per latest industry reports, eSims emit 123g CO2 equivalent, leaving a carbon footprint nearly half of that emitted by traditional SIMs (229g),during its life cycle (production to end of life). Considering that there are over 6.94 billion smartphone users and millions of active IoT devices, the switch to eSims is bound to have a positive and strategic impact from an environmental perspective. Additionally, physical sim cards have been undergoing multiple changes in size, leading to consumers discarding archaic cards and replacing them with newer models frequently. This naturally leads to significant e-waste. eSims, being inherently a virtual product, requires only a one-time semiconductor component, which can then tap into networks virtually over the device’s lifetime. This naturally means a multiplier effect in e-waste produced by the telecom industry. 

How is eSIM technology prompting telecom operators to rethink their business models, and what new opportunities does it present for them?

eSIMs are helping democratize the telecom industry, enabling companies owning any sort of mobile infrastructure to compete for the user on par. This includes nationwide traditional MNOs, small regional MNOs, various MVNOs, and satellite providers. Once connected on the cloud, users will gain access to these global eSim players, getting to choose purely based on customer experience and affordability, as infrastructure-related issues get ironed in the backend. This will enable smaller players to enter the market and make established telcos rethink their business models towards an ‘infrastructure-as-a-service’ strategy. On the other end, service providers will raise their value propositions gradually and even transition into a ‘platform-as-a-service’ marketplace model.

What level of awareness do you find among consumers regarding eSIM technology, and how does your company approach educating the market about its benefits?

While the industry is definitely upbeat about eSIM technology, user awareness is still at a nascent stage. This is of course bound to change, as smartphone manufacturers take the lead in shipping out eSim-only devices. The efforts of major telcos and new-age entrants to offer a variety of eSim plans will further drive awareness. 

As one of the world’s leading service providers, our growth at eSIM Plus is tied to our vision to go beyond just basic consumer services and connect various loose ends on the B2B front as well. We understand that new technology shouldn’t intimidate but should be a familiar extension of existing services, which is why our services are tailored to make the transition to eSims as seamless as possible. 

With over 3 million users, we primarily drive user engagement and acquisition through our intuitive eSIM Plus mobile app. We are active on social media, and have strategic partnerships with tech platforms, including Nicegram, where millions of users can check our offerings and buy voice/data plans for as low as $7. By focusing on the end user thus, and positioning our customer awareness efforts in a targeted manner across multiple platforms, we have been able to clock one of the highest growth rates in the sector.  

 Furthermore, we also understand that the growth of the ecosystem requires taking all stakeholders into confidence. Which is why our ongoing focus on integrating blockchain and emerging web3 tech to build a decentralised consumer platform is a big part of our vision to connect big and small players. We expect this part of our vision to go live soon, and eventually make eSim services significantly more affordable for the end user. We are already offering our users in 190+ countries the option to pay their telecom bills via fiat or crypto (wherever regulation allows it), thus bringing newer consumer demographics into this space.

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