Google's eSIM transfer tool for Android smartphones revealed
Google is working on a feature that will allow Android users to transfer their eSIM to other devices, similar to the functionality available on iPhones.
In the last few years, embedded SIM or eSIM has become extremely popular. While it was initially used in smartwatches, manufacturers now incorporate this technology into their smartphones too. Apple last year even went ahead and made the iPhone 14 only eSIM compatible in the United States, removing the physical SIM slot altogether. Although using an eSIM has several advantages such as the ability to store multiple profiles, it can be quite confusing when you have to switch your SIM card over to another device.
To tackle this, Google in February announced that Android would be getting support for eSIM transfer, and now we have a first look at this feature.
eSIM transfer on Android
According to a report by 9to5Google, Android will soon get support for an eSIM transfer tool that would allow users to transfer their eSIM profiles to another compatible device. This feature is already present on iPhones and works almost flawlessly, and Google is planning to introduce the same in its OS. It was discovered embedded within Google Play Services. User @AssembleDebug posted screenshots of the eSIM transfer feature on X (formerly known as Twitter).
Although the feature is not live yet, AssembleDebug revealed that transferring eSIM would require initiating the transfer on the current device, and then scanning a QR code on the other device with a UI similar to the fast pair facility on Android. Then, due process would need to be completed on the device you wish to transfer the eSIM profile to.
“Google has already announced & working on the capability of transferring your eSIMs. Initiate transfer on current device, scan the QR displayed on other device on which you want to transfer it. Once scanned, you need to complete the process on your other device.”
While it is not yet known if the feature would work across operating systems such as Android to iOS or vice versa, Android users will be able to transfer their eSIM to other devices with this feature.
Why use an eSIM?
eSIM can give users an advantage over traditional SIM as they are more convenient. Swapping SIMs does not require you to physically remove a SIM card and then put it in another device. Instead, you can just transfer eSIM profiles to another device and you're ready to go. Moreover, eSIMs can be more secure too as nobody can discreetly remove your SIM from your device and use it for nefarious activities.
While it has these advantages, only premium smartphones offer eSIM capabilities right now. Since it is a relatively new technology, not all countries offer eSIM services.