eSIM was introduced on last year’s Pixel 2, but it didn’t gain traction as most U.S. and global carriers stayed away from the technology. The difference today? Aside from the Pixel 3 retaining the feature, Apple’s iPhone XS also ships with eSIM support. So there’s much more of an incentive for wireless companies to be interested.
Google made an announcement this week that, over the next few months, multiple carriers from around the world will embrace eSIM.
The list has been limited so far. In the U.S., only Project Fi customers could take advantage of eSIM support and link to a wireless network in a handful of taps. Joining the mix will be Sprint in the U.S., Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone in Germany, EE in the U.K., Airtel and Reliance Jio in India, and Truphone and Gigsky in other countries.
Moving forward, Google says it’ll also be a lot easier for hardware manufacturers to integrate eSIM support into their mobile devices. The feature will let consumers choose their wireless service on-device rather than relying on a physical SIM card.
The updated eSIM support will be rolled this month and into 2019. With a long list of carriers remaining, Google has to get some momentum and add partners as soon as possible.