The service is currently available in select circles of Mumbai, Delhi, and Gujarat.

Vodafone logo on mobile
Atom Smartphones Tuesday, July 21, 2020 - 18:49

Telecommunications service provider Vodafone Idea on Monday announced that postpaid customers could now get eSIM for eSIM compatible Apple devices, such as iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone SE, iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max & iPhone XR. The service will be available soon on Samsung Galaxy Z Flip and Galaxy Fold as well.

The service is currently available in select circles of Mumbai, Delhi, and Gujarat. 

Vodafone postpaid customers using eSIM enabled handsets will no longer be required to put in a physical SIM card to access the network. eSIM comes in the form of an integrated SIM chip which will be compliant with all the supported mobile network operators. They will be able to carry out normal calling, SMS, data access and more without having to change physical SIM cards manually.

Avneesh Khosla, the Director of Marketing at Vodafone Idea, said that eSIM allows customers “to enjoy the benefits of convenience and flexibility of having more than one SIM even on a single SIM device. We, therefore, believe that eSIM will provide an enhanced experience to our customers as it will enable them to do a lot more with their device.”

What is an eSIM? 

An eSIM is an electronic or embedded SIM and stands for Embedded Subscriber Identity Module. In an eSIM, the SIM technology is built right into your phone, instead of a physical card. It’s a small chip that can authenticate the identity with your carrier. With an eSIM, the main advantage is that the phone has a few dedicated settings attached to your SIM card that allow you to switch between lines and carriers and manage accounts. It saves you the process of switching between physical cards when changing your service provider. 

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were among the first phones to support eSIM technology. Then the iPhone XS came which offered both a physical SIM card and an eSIM as a secondary. However, the eSIM on the iPhone XS was enabled only later through an iOS software update. eSIM technology came to Indian shores in 2018 when Apple launched the LTE version of the Apple Watch Series 3. 

Apart from Vodafone Idea, Airtel and Reliance Jio also support eSIM functionality. While the facility is available for Airtel postpaid users only, both prepaid and postpaid customers of Jio have this functionality.  

Besides India, eSIM is supported in nine other countries namely, Austria, Canada, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Spain, the UK and the USA.  

How to get eSIM on your phone

If you are an existing customer, you need to follow the steps as given below: 

> Send SMS to 199 by typing “eSIM <space> email id” (If no email id is registered with your mobile number, send SMS “email <space>email id” to  199. Post-registration you can reinitiate the eSIM process).

> If your email is valid, you will receive SMS from 199. You need to reply with ESIMY to confirm eSIM request.

> Post the confirmation SMS, you will receive another SMS from 199 asking you to provide consent over a call.

> After providing your consent on the call, an email with a QR code will be sent to the registered email id.

> Scan the QR Code: On Apple device, make sure that the phone is connected to Wi-Fi or mobile data; Go to "Settings" > Select "Mobile Data" > Click on "Add Data Plan”; Now "Scan QR code" received on mail; Follow the prompts on the phone.

New customers can visit the nearest Vodafone store with proof of identity and photograph to get a new Vodafone eSIM connection. It is preferred to carry the handset along so that the QR code generated during the activation process can be scanned immediately.

The QR code sent through email will only be useful for a single scan and the eSIM will be successfully activated within 2 hours post scanning the code.