Tuesday, 13 September 2022 08:26

Apple’s first eSIM-only iPhone 14 boon or bane for carriers: analyst

By

Last week, American multinational technology company Apple released the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus, two new phone models that boast design, camera upgrades, a new safety capabilities. The new models sold in the US market will be eSIM only, a move that will have major ramifications across other markets, according to analysts at research firm GlobalData.

“eSIM allows users to easily connect or quickly transfer their existing plans digitally, is a more secure alternative to a physical SIM card, and allows for multiple cellular plans on a single device. iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus remove the SIM tray for US models, enabling users to more quickly and easily set up their devices,” Apple noted in its launch press release.

Telecom TV reported that Apple has long supported eSIM functionality but has not implemented this design on previous smartphones.

According to the same report, the move is significant because it will force US mobile service providers to support eSIM activation if they want to have iPhone 14 users as customers.

While current mobile services are enabled by physical SIM cards, an eSIM is a programmable card embedded into a device that allows users to switch to other connectivity providers more easily.

The eSIM activation has been backed by mobile giants Samsung and Apple but mobile services providers are not to keen to support the functionality for fear of losing customers to a rival.

GlobalData warns the consequences of having a eSIM smartphone is varied, representing challenges and opportunities for carrier differentiation in terms of digital customer experience, onboarding, roaming, privacy, security management, and promotional thinking.

Carrier marketeers will need to completely rethink the way they market their 5G networks, it added.

GlobalData technology service director Emma Mohr-McClune said earlier this year the firm predicted that the future iPhone 14 model would be launched with an eSIM-only variant but few global carriers had to think first before implementing the functionality.

“For carriers outside the US, the first eSIM-only iPhone launch in the US is a clear signal of what’s coming to carriers everywhere, and now sooner rather than later. US carriers no longer have the luxury of waiting out the eSIM market; they’ll have to deal with the eSIM-only iPhone 14, whether they like it or not. Some are arguably better prepared than others, but many of the smaller, local and prepaid carriers – including smaller players serving the business community – are facing a furious game of catch-up,” Mohr-Mclune noted.

GlobalData forecasts that eSIM will happen soon. Carriers that cannot support the new generation of iPhone 14 customers “is a business disaster waiting to happen.”

“Firstly, we anticipate seeing far more eSIM Test Drive offers launch in the market. These are promotions inviting customers of competing networks to ‘test drive’ a carrier’s network for free, compare the performance of the new network with that of their existing providers, and potentially switch to a new offer using their device’s eSIM,” Mohr-McClune identified.

“Free eSIM Test Drives represent a marketing problem for US carriers who have up until now, marketed the strength of their networks in terms of national coverage and generic download speed averages. eSIM Test Drives invite users to confirm the real-life performance of competing networks in terms of the user’s specific location, indoor connectivity, regular application requirements, and more – a far more radically personalized form of mobile service ‘try before you buy’.”

“To this end, the current inflation-induced cost of living crunch will provide extra incentive to customers to try out the so-called ‘cut the cord’ scenario – using the smartphone as a mobile hotspot instead of fixed broadband or cable for home connectivity, via an eSIM 5G Test Drive offer.”

“Lastly, we believe this first generation of eSIM-only iPhone users will create more familiarity and trust in the market for eSIM onboarding self-management, opening opportunities for local, roaming and even application-specific, specialists to appear in the market with low-cost, commitment-free ‘micro-offers’ for on/ off connectivity, wherever, and whenever the user requires it, self-managed by an app and the device’s inbuilt eSIM feature.”

The new generation will learn how to self-manage multiple eSIM profiles on one device making it easier to manage contacts, GlobalData said.

Users may learn to respond to QR code promotions for ‘free connectivity’ offers, in exchange for private data (location, usage etc.) permission, or even take up digital service offers in which the ‘connectivity is included for free’, via eSIM onboarding.

Since the eSIM provides carriers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) with a far faster, easier software update path, GlobalData says "we may see the launch of ultra-secure, cybersecurity mobile service providers, able to guarantee data privacy and user security at multiple levels, via eSIM onboarding."

“The eSIM-only smartphone is an invitation for much creativity in the mobile market, and we’ll be watching the competitive fallout carefully. The carriers best prepared for the arrival of eSIM-only devices, and able to think through not only the competitive threats, but the innovation opportunities, will be best poised to perform well in this new era of digital connectivity competition,” Mohr-McClune concluded.

This first appeared in the subscription newsletter CommsWire on 12 September 2022. 

Read 1321 times

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here
BACK TO LATEST NEWS here




GET READY FOR XCONF AUSTRALIA 2022

Thoughtworks presents XConf Australia, back in-person in three cities, bringing together people who care deeply about software and its impact on the world.

In its fifth year, XConf is our annual technology event created by technologists for technologists.

Participate in a robust agenda of talks as local thought leaders and Thoughtworks technologists share first-hand experiences and exchange new ways to empower teams, deliver quality software and drive innovation for responsible tech.

Explore how at Thoughtworks, we are making tech better, together.

Tickets are now available and all proceeds will be donated to Indigitek, a not-for-profit organisation that aims to create technology employment pathways for First Nations Peoples.


Click the button below to register and get your ticket for the Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane event

GET YOUR TICKET!

PROMOTE YOUR WEBINAR ON ITWIRE

It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site itwire.com and prominent Newsletter promotion https://itwire.com/itwire-update.html and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV https://www.youtube.com/c/iTWireTV/videos which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinars and campaigns and assistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.

MORE INFO HERE!

BACK TO HOME PAGE
Kenn Anthony Mendoza

Kenn Anthony Mendoza is the newest member of the iTWire team. Kenn is also a contributing writer for South China Morning Post Style, and has written stories on Korean entertainment, Asian and European royalty, Millionaires and Billionaires, and LGBTQIA+ issues. He has been published in Philippine newspapers, magazines, and online sites: Tatler PhilippinesManila BulletinCNN Philippines LifePhilippine StarManila Times, and The Daily Tribune. Kenn now covers all aspects of technology news for iTWire.com.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous

WEBINARS ONLINE & ON-DEMAND

GUEST ARTICLES

VENDOR NEWS

Guest Opinion

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News

Comments