e-SIM kicked in popular when the iPhone XS & XR series, it’s a technology that’s actually used now by travel wi-fi services like the Cherry Roam where the mobile device no longer needs a physical sim to connect to a carrier.
To make it simple, an eSIM is like a universal sim inside permanently inside a smartphone where it only needs a registration via QR-Code to be encoded to a carrier such as Globe that offers eSIM.
So we recently got the news that Globe already accepts eSIM for its postpaid customers and even saw some friends using an iPhone XS Max using Globe eSIM and Smart Postpaid via the physical sim. But we encountered one post as well that he mentioned that his iPhone XS eSIM was useless since both sim physical and electronic was locked to Globe.
Out of curiosity, we lined up at the Globe store and inquired to use an eSIM with our iPhone XS Max from a competitor telco. The Globe personnel immediately said that it would not be possible as the unit we have is locked out with a carrier, apparently, the eSIM is locked to the carrier same as the physical sim.
They even mentioned that their eSIM doesn’t work in all iPhone XS or XR units, most successful units work with Globe postpaid units and units from the US, while units from ASIA like HK open-line doesn’t work all the time.
So we still said we would like to try just to make sure and the personnel proceeded to transfer our sim data to the eSIM. We tried scanning the QR code and the error code showed up above, which means that our competitor telco locked iPhone XS Max can’t be used for the eSIM. Then the personnel proceeds to transfer back our sim to the physical one, it was a process that we appreciated and kudos to Globe for letting us try despite the warning.
So what does this all mean?
We appreciate the technology of eSIM and the idea that it saves the environment that you don’t need a physical sim anymore as you just need a QR scan code to use the eSIM. But let’s say you’re using a Globe Postpaid iPhone XS / XS Max or XR and you used the eSIM, that means you can use the physical sim with another Globe Sim…its ironic.
So it’s practically useless for our case to take advantage of the eSIM since you can’t use the physical sim slot for another carrier unless you’ve bought the unit in open line and using a Globe postpaid line if you’re from the Philippines. The thoughts of using the physical SIM when traveling by using a local sim is dead as well as iPhone and the carrier decided to lock both sims to the carrier making the “Dual-Sim” functionality useless.
At first, we thought that the iPhone XS Max was finally the phone with dual-sim functionality but this decision just put the nail in the coffin and just made Android smartphones an edge why they are better than iPhones. Honestly, we’re puzzled why iPhone and the carrier would do this, especially they sell dual-sim android phones with just one sim slot locked and the other opened.
Overall the Globe eSIM will only benefit you if you are
Using an open line iPhone XS / XR with eSIM feature
Using a Globe Postpaid unit so you can at least try the eSIM functionality but your physical sim is still locked to the same carrier making the sim slot useless unless you use the same carrier.
So our say for eSIM, it’s a niche that became even a rare item further. It has potential, but locking both eSIM and physical sim slot to one carrier is a sign of business profit over innovation.
Hopefully in the future, more phones will feature eSIM without the locking functionality, we embrace this future and hopefully, we can experience it sooner than the famous 5G.