Carrier List of eSim providers (Prepaid vs Postpaid)

0970373

Suspended
Original poster
Mar 15, 2008
2,727
1,407
Is there a more detailed list of eSIM providers somewhere? I know Apple lists the carriers but outside of that, it lacks any useful information like if they offer post-paid or pre-paid on eSIM, if it's provisioned via app or if you have to call or obtain an eSIM card like on EE.

EDIT: Doesn't look like there is a real list out there so perhaps this can be turned into a Wiki. Let's keep quick availability info on the main post but feel free to link to a more detailed post. Just want to keep it clean and information easy to find.

China

3: Pre-paid roaming data as add-on. Need to confirm if available to non-postpaid customers.

Germany

Telekom: Post-paid and pre-paid eSIM officially supported. NOTE: ID required to begin service regardless of eSIM or physical SIM. Additional information here and here.

Philippines

Globe: Post-paid eSIM only, no pre-paid support. You must visit one of the stores listed to set up.


Switzerland

Swisscom: Post-Paid and Prepaid. Prepaid QR Voucher available at every Swisscom Shop
ID/Passport required for registration (Swiss LAW)

Sunrise: Only Post-Paid.

UK

EE:
Post-paid eSIM only. You can call or go to an EE store for an eSIM card with QR code. No pre-paid eSIM.

USA

T-Mobile: No official post-paid support (some have been successful in a work-around but it isn't guaranteed and T-Mobile will not support if there is a problem). Pre-paid eSIM available via the T-Mobile eSIM app.

Verizon: Post-Paid eSIM only. Existing customers can call to have service switched to eSIM. New customers can sign up via the MyVerizon app. No pre-paid eSIM support.

AT&T: Post-paid eSIM available with $5 Blue QR card via in-store or chat. Pre-paid unconfirmed.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: MareLuce

0970373

Suspended
Original poster
Mar 15, 2008
2,727
1,407
Thanks but this isn't really what I was describing. I'm not sure you read my whole post.

The Apple link doesn't contain much more than the providers as I stated in my OP nor does it actually list all the providers now. The eSIM thread isn't comprehensive and is really just links to a few providers. I am looking for or looking to collectively build (& update as changes arise) an at-a-glance guide to eSIM providers around the globe similar to my examples above.
 
Last edited:

OBirder

macrumors 6502
May 13, 2015
362
255
USA:

AT&T Postpaid
- buy blue eSIM card for $5 and activate via Chat/Online
- Provide ICCID number from blue eSIM card
- Once activated, add cellular plan and scan QR code
- Keep blue eSIM card - can be reinstalled after phone wipe or phone swap

AT&T Prepaid (potentially not officially supported)
- Buy physical SIM in store and activate
- Buy blue eSIM card for $5
- Create online account with PIN
- Call or chat and ask for "Update SIM card on account"
- Provide ICCID number from blue eSIM card
- Once activated, add cellular plan and scan QR code
- Keep blue eSIM card - can be reinstalled after phone wipe or phone swap


Germany

Telekom
- Officially supported for postpaid and prepaid
- Physical SIM needed first (for new customer: in store, international passport and German address required)
- Setup online customer account in online portal
- Request via chat switch to eSIM
- Within 24 hours one-time use QR code will be provided in online portal
- Add cellular plan, scan QR code from screen
- Swap is free of charge ; for new phone or reinstall a new request in customer portal online chat is required
 

pika2000

Suspended
Jun 22, 2007
5,587
4,895
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
 

OBirder

macrumors 6502
May 13, 2015
362
255
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
After the one time setup:

- I have the low cost T-Mobile plan domestic and international
- On the second eSIM line I have prepaid AT&T for areas with no T-Mobile coverage
- When I travel to Europe, I turn on the Telekom eSIM line and use it for local data in all of the EU

- I don't have to remove the case
- I don't have to change physical SIM and risk losing it e.g. in an airplane or at airport (have done that before)

It is as easy as flipping a switch in the settings (takes only a few seconds) and turn on data for this plan. I do it when I board the airplane or when I land. It's much easier than the 3 SIM's I had to have before to achieve the same.

Actually, when I travelled I had two phones. My current one so I can be reached under my main number and my old unlocked phone with the local SIM for data. Now I only have to carry one phone.

On the other side, if you don't like what the OP is asking for, than you could just move on ... We do understand that not everyone travels internationally and domestic and doesn't have a large use for it.
 

Superrjamz54

macrumors 6502
Dec 4, 2015
499
314
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
The real object is to remove the SIM card altogether and allow the user to dictate what carrier they use and not allow the carrier to dictate that.
 

pika2000

Suspended
Jun 22, 2007
5,587
4,895
The real object is to remove the SIM card altogether and allow the user to dictate what carrier they use and not allow the carrier to dictate that.
Do you really think that would happen? Look at AT&T locking eSIM. Remember the days of CDMA phones completely carrier controlled without a SIM slot? Yeah that’s where you want to go back to? :shrug:

The only thing that makes sense for eSIM is if Apple becomes the middleman, giving the list of carriers user want to activate on. Without that, carriers can do whatever they want and there’s nothing you can do about it.
[doublepost=1550110792][/doublepost]
Thanks but this isn't really what I was describing. I'm not sure you read my whole post.

The Apple link doesn't contain much more than the providers as I stated in my OP nor does it actually list all the providers now. The eSIM thread isn't comprehensive and is really just links to a few providers. I am looking for or looking to collectively build (& update as changes arise) an at-a-glance guide to eSIM providers around the globe similar to my examples above.
Just to add

Singapore
M1: postpaid only
 
  • Like
Reactions: Farrellcollie

brofkand

macrumors 6502
Jun 11, 2006
471
917
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
I think that's the plan sort of like the Apple SIM in iPads. People buy the phone unattached to a carrier, and during the setup of the phone they can choose their carrier and the phone will install an eSIM over the air. Apple SIM never made it to iPhone, but that idea has sort of been usurped by the rewritable eSIM anyway.

This is sort of how the original iPhone was activated over 10 years ago, and how iPads have pretty much always worked (especially since the Apple SIM).
 

pika2000

Suspended
Jun 22, 2007
5,587
4,895
I think that's the plan sort of like the Apple SIM in iPads. People buy the phone unattached to a carrier, and during the setup of the phone they can choose their carrier and the phone will install an eSIM over the air. Apple SIM never made it to iPhone, but that idea has sort of been usurped by the rewritable eSIM anyway.

This is sort of how the original iPhone was activated over 10 years ago, and how iPads have pretty much always worked (especially since the Apple SIM).
That sounded great, until carriers like AT&T locking eSIMs. So imagine if the phone has no SIM slot at all, you just suddenly have a locked phone out of the blue. How’s that good for consumers? Just like the old CDMA phones, no physical SIM, all carrier controlled. But I guess that’s what people wanted.

eSIM can only work if Apple literally put themselves as the middle man, so carriers cannot just lock the eSIM willy nilly. But we know that’s impossible.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Farrellcollie

brofkand

macrumors 6502
Jun 11, 2006
471
917
That sounded great, until carriers like AT&T locking eSIMs. So imagine if the phone has no SIM slot at all, you just suddenly have a locked phone out of the blue. How’s that good for consumers? Just like the old CDMA phones, no physical SIM, all carrier controlled. But I guess that’s what people wanted.

eSIM can only work if Apple literally put themselves as the middle man, so carriers cannot just lock the eSIM willy nilly. But we know that’s impossible.
If you buy the phone without a financing agreement then the eSIM is not locked, correct?

It's no surprise that a phone under a financing agreement would have the eSIM locked, it's no different than a regular SIM in that regard.
 
  • Like
Reactions: DmPsTrFyR

pika2000

Suspended
Jun 22, 2007
5,587
4,895
If you buy the phone without a financing agreement then the eSIM is not locked, correct?

It's no surprise that a phone under a financing agreement would have the eSIM locked, it's no different than a regular SIM in that regard.
AT&T is locking iPads (which are always sold unlocked) eSIM.
 

pika2000

Suspended
Jun 22, 2007
5,587
4,895
Buy the iPad from Apple then, don't reward bad business practices.
Doesn’t matter where you bought your iPad. Even if you bought one from Apple, once you connect to at&t through the eSIM, the eSIM will be locked to at&t. That’s what carriers can do with eSIM. Do you still want that? Not me.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Farrellcollie

bpeeps

macrumors 68040
May 6, 2011
3,114
3,020
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
Because plenty of people would like the convenience of having two Sim cards for their phone without having to constantly find a paperclip to eject and swap Sims.
 

0970373

Suspended
Original poster
Mar 15, 2008
2,727
1,407
Doesn’t matter where you bought your iPad. Even if you bought one from Apple, once you connect to at&t through the eSIM, the eSIM will be locked to at&t. That’s what carriers can do with eSIM. Do you still want that? Not me.
What you're describing is illegal if the consumer doesn't owe AT&T anything. I think what you are thinking of is that AT&T was locking out the the Apple SIMs that were in iPads previously. If you activated it and then wanted to use it on another carrier, as you're supposed to be able to do, it wouldn't allow you to. You'd have to go and get a new SIM from the other carrier or a new Apple SIM.

They caught a lot of bad PR about it but it wasn't illegal or in violation of the terms of the class action lawsuit they lost since the SIM was still replaceable.

If AT&T did lock an eSIM phone, as long as you didn't owe them any financing on it, they would be obliged to unlock it. It's a worry because they are shady AF but they have not done what you are proposing. They would be in a lot of trouble w/ the FCC if they started locking eSIM devices that people didn't owe them money on.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SIM_lock#United_States
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: OBirder

Pez555

macrumors 68020
Apr 18, 2010
2,188
618
Moved my contract number over to the phone and then bought a pay as you go sim to go in my phone as my business number. So far so good!

EE uk
 
  • Like
Reactions: Azzin

pdxsellers

macrumors member
Jun 30, 2016
39
15
AT&T Prepaid - Walked into corporate location and was able to activate eSIM on my XS Max. Took maybe 5 minutes total to get it setup.
 

George Knighton

macrumors 65816
Oct 13, 2010
1,331
307
Wow, such convoluted mess. Why do we want this instead of simply putting a physical SIM inside a phone?

I fail to see the logic of eSIM. Unless Apple becomes the provider hosting all the carrier options so user can directly choose carriers via Apple, I don’t see the point of eSIM.
Flexibility, mostly. With the A2104, you are limited to two physical SIM.

With the A1921, you can have one physical SIM and several eSIM for a variety of circumstances. Maybe a plan just for data in the EU, another plan for data in Hong Kong, a plan that is your business number, and a plan that is your private number.

In my case my wonderful cheap T-Mobile plan is an eSIM, and I have XFinity Mobile (Verizon MVNO) as physical SIM for those rare times Verizon might be better than T-Mobile.

I considered carrying an A2104, but the A1921 provides so much more flexibility when traveling. :)
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.