Finding safe and affordable data is a challenge all travellers face while abroad, but the eSIM might be about to change all that.
Each year, one billion travellers carry one or more devices that can connect to the internet while abroad. Whether used for social media, booking accommodation, online banking or digital maps, most of these devices aren’t all that useful without internet connection. However, between the steep costs of international roaming or the complications of purchasing a local SIM card, most travellers simply jump from public wifi hotspot to wifi hotspot. But this may all change with the customer embedded SIM.
The eSIM, by GSMA, is built into the customer’s device, allowing them to get cellular connection without the hassle of changing over their SIM card. By using an application or a QR code, users can get connected within around 30-40 seconds. Basically, the eSIM allows you to access data in an affordable and convenient way, that doesn’t put your device at risk of middleman hackers.
However, like all new technology, there may still be some issues to be ironed out. First, when both the eSIM and the normal SIM card are turned on, a device’s battery won’t last as long as normal. And second, there are still a limited number of suppliers and plans offering the eSIM, so these preliminary models may not be the most desirable for budget travellers.
The eSIM is predicted to become a standard feature in all smartphones within just a few years, but those looking into the technology now should weigh up the financial costs and benefits. For those who travel frequently and enjoy the freedom of data connectivity, this may just be the device for you.
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