Welcome to the first in our new blog series: Arkessa talks reprogrammable SIMs, in which we discuss the technology behind eSIM and eUICC, and the benefits they bring to enterprises and whole industries. Read on to find out more about how this technology works.

What is eSIM?

Essentially, we are talking about an embedded SIM chip, vacuum-sealed and soldered down on an electronic circuit board, rather than a removable component such as a traditional SIM card. Fast becoming the most popular option for IoT devices, the eSIM offers a number of compelling advantages over its traditional counterpart such as miniaturisation, security, durability and increased operational life.

What about eUICC?

Another clear advantage of eSIM comes in the form of embedded Universal Integrated Circuit Card (eUICC) technology. By making eSIM and traditional SIM-connected devices completely reprogrammable, this technology provides numerous possibilities to future proof and adapt connected devices remotely. The added flexibility and durability eUICC offers is particularly useful for devices deployed for a long period of time or in hard-to-reach locations. eUICC can be applied to traditional SIM cards of different sizes from mini SIM (2FF) to the smallest nano-SIM (4FF) as well as vacuum-sealed, soldered-down eSIM chips (MFF2).

The need for field visits or other maintenance actions for connected devices is reduced and simplified as the eUICC-enabled SIM can be reprogrammed over the air (OTA), with no need to recall the device to switch providers. This remote provisioning SIM solution also provides the option to store and manage more than one profile, and will typically include a bootstrap profile for out-of-the-box connectivity, a production or operational profile and a fall-back profile to provide some insurance.

The multiple profiles and different tariffs support the various use case scenarios from end-of-line testing, forward and reverse logistics and day-to-day end user usage.

This re-programmability enables Enterprises to adapt and take advantage of different commercial arrangements and different radio access technologies such as 4G, NB-IoT, LTE CatM and 5G. It is a future-proof solution.

What are the main advantages?

As well as the practical benefits already mentioned such as flexibility and remote access, eSIM and eUICC technology empowers Enterprises to use customisation and adaptability to provide the best service to their customers. This technology provides greater control of connectivity to remote devices, people and assets. This control and manageability delivers the means to monitor how remote assets are being used and how they perform, creating a step-change in the quality of real-time business intelligence. This can in turn be used to optimise deployment, adapt product design following customer feedback, and even adjust features in real time.

How is it managed?

A managed service enables global Enterprises who have large scale networks of connected devices to maintain control over their connectivity and deployment. This control and manageability allows Enterprises to monitor remote assets and make changes to systems in response to real-time data and business intelligence.

Security and service continuity are essential factors for a successful managed service, and Enterprises need to ensure that they choose a partner they can trust. For more information, read the Arkessa Whitepaper on Optimising Enterprise IoT and Mobility eUICC.


Note: This is the first of three blogs on Reprogrammable SIMs. Click here for the second and third.

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