In today's hyper-connected era, the ability to cost-effectively maintain uninterrupted, agile communications is paramount. Whether you're tracking shipping cargo across oceans or ensuring your mobile application remains accessible in every corner of the globe, the freedom to seamlessly switch between carriers and providers is crucial.
At the heart of this capability lie eSIM and Multi-IMSI networks – technologies that are redefining the boundaries of global connectivity. This article delves into the transformative roles of eSIM platforms and Multi-IMSI networks, including their inherent importance for businesses, IoT providers, and the broader global landscape.
What is an eSIM?
An eSIM, or embedded SIM, is a chip within mobile devices that allows service providers to program subscriber profiles remotely, eliminating the need for a physical SIM card.
This technology was a radical new way to load SIMs into devices but quickly became commonplace because it offers an equivalent level of security and protection as a removable SIM card – without the restrictions of a physical card.
eSIMs are also gaining popularity due to their ability to deliver a seamless customer experience by securely and remotely managing the lifecycle of cellular subscriptions. For instance, Telna’s eSIM platform gives CSPs access to hundreds of mobile network operators worldwide.
The advantages of eSIM
eSIM technology is gaining strong momentum in IoT segments too, including automotive, because it allows users to assign an eSIM to their device digitally at the time of purchase or to call their carrier for an eSIM after setup. In the broad, the advantages of eSIM include:
- Streamlined deployment: eSIMs allow organizations to remotely provision and manage IoT devices, making it easier to deploy large numbers of devices without manually inserting or replacing SIM cards.
- Global connectivity: With eSIM, IoT devices can connect to a multitude of networks worldwide, ensuring consistent connectivity regardless of geographical location.
- Cost efficiency: By leveraging eSIM technology, organizations can dynamically select the best network provider based on rates and signal quality, potentially reducing connectivity costs.
- Enhanced flexibility: eSIMs enable IoT devices to seamlessly switch between carriers and networks as they move across regions, ensuring uninterrupted service.
Thanks to the flexibility of eSIM, organizations can maintain a standardized fleet of IoT devices without the need to stock multiple SIM cards for different regions or network providers.
What is Multi-IMSI?
Multi-IMSI (Multiple International Mobile Subscriber Identities) is a technology that allows a device to connect to multiple networks. An IMSI is a unique number that lets Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) authenticate their subscribers so they can access the MNO's network and any networks the MNO has established roaming agreements with.
A multi-IMSI SIM card holds two or more IMSI profiles, which can be switched between to improve device connectivity and uptime.
This technology is essential in many use cases, not dissimilar to the use cases for eSIMs. Indeed, Multi-IMSI connectivity is perfect for IoT device use cases, as an IoT solution is more likely to travel, needing to connect locally wherever users might be.
For example, a shipping company that uses IoT devices benefits from global connectivity when the ships can cross oceans while staying connected to the main hub – thanks to the flexibility of multi-IMSI.
Advantages of Multi-IMSI
Multi-IMSI plays a crucial role in mobile communications. Its inherent flexibility means that operators and users can take advantage of a range of characteristics:
- Increased connectivity and coverage: IMSI switching, which involves changing the IMSI, enables devices to connect to multiple mobile networks at competitive rates, providing improved connectivity and coverage across different regions and countries.
- Enhanced performance: IMSI switching can improve the performance of mobile devices by enabling them to connect to the network with the best signal strength and quality. This can result in faster data transfer rates, reduced latency, and improved overall device performance.
- Cost savings: IMSI switching can also lead to cost savings as it allows devices to connect to the most cost-effective available network.
- Privacy and security: Changing the IMSI can help maintain privacy and security in communications. This is particularly beneficial in the case of encrypted SIM cards, which allow users to acquire as many IMSIs as they need, keeping them safe and anonymous in all their private communications.
Multi-IMSI also plays a crucial role in international roaming. When a mobile from another network provider connects, the IMSI is automatically converted into a Global Title, which can then be used to look up the subscriber’s data in their own operator’s Home Location Register (HLR).
Multi-IMSI technology, where the SIM is loaded with several IMSIs, promises flexibility for global IoT deployments because it allows subscribers to switch carriers when the device moves to a new geographical area.
The power of eSIM and Multi-IMSI in global connectivity
Which of eSIM or Multi-IMSI to use depends on the particular use case – yes, eSIM is more of a universal standard, but Multi-IMSI nonetheless offers advantages.
Either way, both eSIM and Multi-IMSI technologies offer a powerful tool for companies that rely on IoT devices and work across the globe. eSIM platforms provide a seamless and secure way to manage cellular subscriptions, while Multi-IMSI networks ensure uninterrupted connectivity by allowing devices to switch between different networks as needed.
These technologies are particularly beneficial for IoT devices that need an agile way to switch between networks and move along different locations. For instance, in cargo businesses, the loss of coverage or visibility of the location of the device or any gaps in the service can impact the metrics required to track and assess the performance of the IoT devices via cloud integration.
In conclusion, eSIM platforms and Multi-IMSI networks are unlocking global connectivity by providing seamless, secure, and uninterrupted connectivity. As the world continues to become more interconnected, these technologies will play a crucial role in shaping the future of global connectivity.
You can read more about how Telna’s eSIM platform can empower your IoT devices here.