The tech is made by Thales Group and is similar to the eSIM which was flogged to Apple for the iPhone 14. The Tame Apple press claims that this proves that its favourite phone maker is ahead of the innovative pack when it just opened its chequebook first.
Qualcomm’s flavour of the technology is considerably more advanced than what Thales sold Jobs’ Mob. The iSIM is being installed onto the processor of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 rather than existing as its own chip on the motherboard.
This saves space by eliminating the need for a separate component allowing phone manufacturers the opportunity “to create smaller, more compact devices”.
The result is a solid phone that's more resistant to dust and water damage while being “easier to carry”. Thales said that since the iSIM is embedded directly into the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 it will be difficult to get access to a device unless you are a carrier using its over-the-air provisioning.
But the downside of iSIM people who travel overseas will not be able to purchase prepaid SIM cards so they can continue using their phones without having to pay for roaming fees.
Thales said the technology can connect to multiple carriers; a feature Thales specifically calls out as “useful for customers who frequently travel internationally”. It claims users will be able to “switch carriers as needed without purchasing a new SIM card” but that requires other countries supporting iSIM.
At the moment, the United States offers the most widespread support, with multiple carriers supporting the tech. However, across Europe and Asia, the support pool is much smaller.