There are a number of differences between traditional SIM activation and eSIM activation SIM. To activate a SIM, the user need to purchase a card that requires to be physically inserted into the device. The activation process then traditionally involves entering PIN to authorise the activation. eSIMs allow for remote SIM provisioning and activation, offering a more convenient and flexible experience for users.  eSIM activation comes with a full online customer journey that allows the user to download anywhere anytime a subscription and to activate it by simply entering the PIN to activate the connectivity.


There are several methods of eSIM activation, each with its own process and benefits. Let's explore them:


QR Code Scan: In this method, a QR code containing the necessary activation information is provided to the user. The user scans this QR code using their device's camera or a dedicated scanning app. The scanned information is then used to download the eSIM. The benefits of QR code activation include simplicity and ease of use. By eliminating the need for manual entry of activation details it reduces the chances of errors and interrupting the customer experience.


Out-of-the-Box Connectivity: With out-of-the-box connectivity, eSIM activation is pre-configured by the device manufacturer or service provider. When a user purchases a device, such as a smartphone or wearable tech, the eSIM is already ready to be downloaded upon unboxing and first boot. This method offers a seamless activation experience, as users don't need to go through any additional steps to activate the eSIM themselves. It is particularly convenient for users who want immediate connectivity.


Carrier Application: In this method, users download a carrier-specific application provided by their mobile network operator. The application guides users through the eSIM activation process and provisions the eSIM with the necessary network credentials. This method offers a customised and controlled experience, as the carrier application can provide additional features and services specific to that carrier. It also enables carriers to streamline their activation processes and maintain a direct relationship with their customers.


Secondary Device Application: Secondary device applications are used when a user wants to share their existing mobile plan with another device. For example, you might have a primary smartphone with an eSIM-activated plan and want to share that plan with a secondary device like a tablet or smartwatch. The secondary device application allows users to activate the eSIM on the secondary device, leveraging the existing plan's data and connectivity. This method offers flexibility by removing the need for separate data plans for each device.


iPhone Transfer: The iPhone Transfer method is specific to iPhones. With this method, users can transfer their existing mobile plan from a physical SIM card to the eSIM on their iPhone. The transfer process involves scanning the physical SIM card and activating the eSIM using the scanned information. This method is convenient for iPhone users who want to switch from a physical SIM to an eSIM without changing their mobile plan or contact information.


These various activation methods cater to different user preferences and device capabilities by still ensure a seamless and user-friendly experience for eSIM activation.

With the expected expansion of the eSIM market, it’s a key strategic move for MNOs and MVNOs to prepare themselves for switching users to eSIM. The upcoming iPhone 15 being expected to be eSIM-only around Europe, it will drive a large number of current physical SIM users to move to eSIM. By investing now operators can ensure business continuity by offering the benefits of eSIM to their customers.


Want to know more about getting ready for eSIM? Find out more about getting ready for eSIM here. To find out more about different methods of eSIM activation speak to a member of the Oasis team


About Oasis Smart SIM

Established in 2011, Oasis Smart SIM is a France and Singapore-based company simplifying Telcos, Service Providers and OEMs’ adoption of eSIM by providing a range of GSMA-certified eSIM infrastructures, platforms and services designed to simplify technology. Oasis Smart SIM is now a member of the GSMA and TCA (Trusted Connectivity Alliance), ranked by Counterpoint Research as the 6th Global eSIM Management Solution Provider in 2022.
Oasis Smart SIM is a subsidiary of Tata Communications Limited, a digital ecosystem enabler powering today’s fast-growing digital economy.

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