Russian iPhone owners got the ability to access the services of several operators due to technology eSIM, reported by users in social networks. Will the technology be useful?

A new feature available in the iPhone XS iPhone XS iPhone Max and XR. Also electronic SIM card, can connect iPad and Apple Watch, announced in 2017. In India and China this feature is already being used.

While smartphones will remain a slot for a physical SIM card, and to use the services of another operator, additional SIM card not have to buy. In the future Apple is likely to refuse to do physical cards, replacing them with software settings: in the U.S. the company actively cooperates on this issue with operators, offering help to their engineers. In other countries operators have prepared specifications that adapt to their frequencies.

The predecessor function eSIM were Apple SIM — chip, presented at the presentation of iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 in 2014. In Russia, he earned only at the end of 2015. It was pre-installed SIM card, not tied to any of the operators. Also a function of eSIM appeared in the third version of the Apple Watch, however, it works on a different principle: SORM perceives it as a different SIM card and the operator will forward calls from your iPhone on your watch.

It is important that eSIM is an electronic, not virtual SIM card. SORM (System of technical means to ensure the functions of operative-investigative activities) perceives it as a physical card. The virtual SIM card is banned in some countries, including in Russia, because imagine a variant of the so-called “copy” card. Restrictions in relation to electronic cards in Russia, in law there is no such term. To resolve this issue in the near future — in the interests of operators.

On the one hand, thanks to this option they will have the opportunity to attract new customers to a separate function. On the other, as customers will be able to diversify the costs operators will incur losses.

“Operators are still eyeing eSIM. On the one hand, is the risk of diversion and loss of user traffic, on the other hand it gives the possibility of building a new business model because the consumer will use e-SIM map longer than usual, explains Executive Vice President, strategy and business development “Vympelcom” Alexander Popovsky. — eSIM involves the ability to switch between network operators without visiting the office operator, but in Russia the SIM card is fixed in the subscription contract. It is important to consider including new regulations for customer identification, as well as acquired outside the country devices, so the specific scenario of connecting and disconnecting subscribers to eSIM in Russia still to be determined. But eSIM any of our roaming partners will work in Russia.”

To switch between operators in the menu “Settings”. When cellular operators in Russia gives customers the opportunity, when you update in section “Cell link” will appear the option “Add tariff”. The only restriction for users — single radio, the smartphone will not allow you to switch to another operator. For example, during a call with one SIM card Internet access on the second will not be available.

Of the big four only “the Megaphone” has confirmed Forbes, that tests the function of eSIM in 2016. From foreign mobile operators and service subscribers in Russia offer Truphone and GigSky. The option to “Add tariff” from users of these operators will appear after you install a mobile application and payment to one of their tariffs. However, the Truphone app in the Russian AppStore there, and GigSky is available, but rates this statement is higher than Russian: cost of services starts from$ 10 for 300 MB of Internet per day.

The eSIM main advantage is that being abroad iPhone users will be able to connect services to local operators and thus not to pay for roaming. Therefore, the Russian operators will have to decide whether to go on such concessions.

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