Since the start of cellular IoT, when it was still referred to as M2M, IoT devices relying on cellular networks for connectivity have used traditional “UICC” SIM Cards (Universal Integrated Circuit Card). UICC SIMs are “static”, meaning that after manufacturing there is no way to replace the operator on the SIM. In the recent years however, technology advances have brought us the next generation of SIM Cards, namely the eUICC SIM (Embedded Universal Integrated Circuit Card).

With eUICC, it’s no longer ‘put the SIM card in the device, and what it is at deployment is what you get for the rest of the devices lifetime’ – eUICC SIMs takes things to the next level: you can download profiles, change operator, or even have multiple operators on the same SIM, something that isn’t possible with traditional UICC SIMs.

The main benefits of eUICC SIMs include:

  • Simplicity: you only need one SKU to manage global deployments
  • Flexibility: through the ability to change the active operator throughout your device’s lifecycle.
  • Resilience: against changes in roaming regulations, such as the introduction permanent roaming
  • Future proofing: through access to both existing and future Tele2 eUICC based services

eUICC is a functional concept for remotely managing SIM profiles, bringing benefits to both the IoT device and the entire deployment. At its very core, eUICC is a software component running on a specific type of SIM hardware that allows you to store multiple operator profiles and switch between them remotely. The physical SIM contains a profile for initial connectivity and is placed in the devices before deployment. Additional profiles can then be downloaded and managed remotely throughout the device’s life cycle. This means that you can change your operator or service provider without having to physically change out your SIM cards, something that can be both costly and logistically challenging, particularly for enterprises who have large-scale, global IoT deployments, as well as those who have deployed hard-to-reach devices. Additionally, eUICC SIMs are available in all standard form factors, meaning that switching to eUICC-enabled SIM cards is possible without the need to completely change your device.

A single SIM for multiple global deployments

Previously, when deploying IoT with traditional UICC SIMs, you needed to understand where your devices would end up in the world so you could install SIM cards with the carrier profile needed to operate in those regions. This could cause complications in your supply chain because managing different SIM with different operators add significant complexity to your manufacturing and logistic process. With eUICC, once your devices are out in the field, remote provisioning allows you to set them up with the carrier profiles best suited to serve your connectivity needs. So, instead of having multiple different SIM cards in the same device in order to, for example, facilitate optimal roaming in different markets, eUICC means you need just one SIM that enables you to activate the optimal profile for the country you’re in even after deployment.

If you would like to learn more about eUICC and how Tele2 IoT can help enable your business, please get in touch.