Embedded SIM (eSIM) in India was introduced in 2018 when Apple launched the LTE version of the Apple Watch Series 3. It was also introduced with iPhone 13 series, iPhone 12 series, iPhone 11, iPhone X and XR, XS, and XS Max. All three major network providers or telecom operators in India, Jio, Airtel, and Vi offer support for the eSIM. eSIM is short for Embedded Subscriber Identity Module, or Embedded SIM. The eSIM supports all the regular networks such as 4G/ 5G, much like the regular physical SIM.
The eSIM stays on the device and cannot be physically pulled out or swapped like a physical SIM card. The embedded SIM, however, needs to be supported by your carrier or network to work. The manufacturers integrate a small SIM card inside the phone, saving the process of switching between the physical ones when you change your service provider.
How to Convert and Activate Physical SIM to Digital eSIM:
Devices supporting eSIM have been in the market for a while now, though still in limited numbers. Jio, Vi, and Airtel also offer the ability to convert your physical SIM to eSIM for devices that support it.
While there is one slot available as usual for the physical SIM card, the eSIM card will need to be activated either by scanning the QR code provided by the preferred carrier or by entering parameters manually.
Steps to convert your Physical SIM to eSIM: Airtel
- Send an SMS eSIM to registered email id on 121
- Then you will receive an SMS from 121, confirming the initiation of the process. You would need to reply back with “1” to confirm the eSIM change request within 60 sec.
- Now you will receive another SMS from 121 asking you to provide consent over a call. After providing your consent on the call, you will receive a final SMS from 121, regarding the QR Code which you will receive on your registered email id.
- You would receive a QR Code on your registered email id. Scan the QR Code received on your registered email id.
Note: The eSIM activation would take around 2 hours, please scan the QR Code immediately upon receipt. Your, existing SIM will continue to work during this period. The QR code is unique and is applicable for just one-time use on one device only. Once scanned, please ensure you complete the process of adding the Carrier.