eSIM to “Eradicate” Roaming In Under 5 Years?

What is an eSIM?

eSIM is short for Embedded Subscriber Identity Module, or Embedded SIM. Rather than being available as a physical entity, the manufacturers integrate a small SIM card inside the phone, saving the process of switching between the physical ones when you change your service provider.

One of the biggest upsides to having your line stored within your iPhone’s eSIM is the freedom it gives you to switch carriers. In fact, this tech will make changing from one company to another as simple as switching Wi-Fi networks, giving you more power over the network which relies on your business to survive.

International roaming could be ‘eradicated’ within the next 3-5 years

The eSIM is very much the future for smartphones and smart devices. Even if you don’t have it now, it’s likely that your next phone—or certainly the one after—will make use of it.

The latest findings from research conducted by ROCCO and UROS suggest the use of international roaming could be ‘eradicated’ within the next three to five years.

The reason is embedded (electronic) SIM, more commonly referred to as eSIM. The research itself is not based on data that suggests this change will happen over this time span but instead is based on “confidential data” and the analysis of plans from 107 Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) from 92 different countries. A sample that the researcher state is the first international roaming-related eSIM global research project to take place. Based on the announced findings, the majority of MNOs were all in agreement that eSIM would likely put an end to international roaming once and for all.

Here are some indicative prepaid eSIM card prices:

Europe (39 countries)

1 GB - 7 days - €4.53

3 GB - 30 days - €12.00

10 GB - 30 days - €33.40airalo

Europe (29 countries)

500 MB - 1 day - €2.00

3 GB - 30 days - €8.00

10 GB - 30 days - €19.00


Europe (36 countries)

1 GB - 7 days - €6.50

3 GB - 15 days - €11.00

10 GB - 30 days - €20.50


Europe (42 countries) 

1 GB - 7 days - €3.73
3 GB - 15 days - €8.45

10 GB - 30 days- €17.40 instabridge logo

Europe (43 countries) 

1 GB - 7 days - €4.70 

5 GB - 30 days - €18.70

10 GB -30 days- €35.40gigsky
eSIM Europe 

Europe (42 countries)

5 GB - 10 days - €11.20

10 GB - 30 days - €22.50

20 GB - 30 days - €33.55 EUsim logo
Stay ahead of the curve in mobile connectivity by following all the latest and most important eSIM news.

eSIM is a market changer

Taking the results of some of the findings together, however, does lead to a slightly more contradictory picture. For example, ROCCO and UROS note that of the 107 MNOs surveyed, 75 percent agreed with the suggestion that the rolling out of eSIM will “remove the need” entirely for international roaming.

Although when asked about their own support for such a change, the MNOs seemed a little less willing to confirm commitment to a post-international roaming world just yet. With only 53 percent stating they would support outbound roaming and even less (42 percent) stating they would support inbound roaming – the latter of which is arguably the more crucial of the two in regards to any change actually taking effect.

Of course, whether or not eSIM does change the international roaming market as drastically, and as quickly, as is suggested here, the consensus seems to be eSIM will be a market changer in general.

As not only does the technology allow device owners to more quickly, and easily jump between carriers within any individual domestic market, but with the influx of connected devices (beyond smartphones and tablets) that are expected to arrive during the next few years, the use of eSIM is likely to skyrocket compared to the adoption levels associated with traditional SIM cards. In the meantime, however, the full report from ROCCO and UROS (which also looks at how MNOs plan to deal with the increased use of eSIM) is available to download through the link below.

When can I start using an eSIM? What is an eSIM?

The next wave of eSIMS will likely first appear en masse in new model LTE-connected computers. These computers are constantly connected and first made an appearance in 2018. Since their splashy arrival, the push for constant connectivity has risen everywhere.

Check out the list of all eSIM-enabled smartphones here.

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