Eseye sees IoT opportunities from eSIMs

Software-defined connectivity is brewing up to growth in IoT.

eSIM card chip sign, an embedded sim concept highlighting connectivity
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Coffee vending machines, delivery lockers and lawnmowers - albeit robotic lawnmowers - may not, at first glance, appear to be the glamorous corner of the technology industry when compared to Hyperloop travel and leading Cisco and HP through their most significant transformations. However, CEO Nick Earle, formerly of the above, would disagree. The Eseye leader fizzes with enthusiasm for how eSIMs are about to deliver the next wave of Internet of Things (IoT) business change as a key component of vending machines, lockers and lawnmowers as well as much else. 

As the SIM card becomes software-defined, Earle and his organisation describe to IDG Connect how the global downturn will increase IoT adoption and, in doing so, disrupt the telecoms sector and require eSIM providers like Eseye to be makers and integrators.

For those not connected to the trends in SIM technology, an eSIM is an embedded SIM card and therefore programmable. With no removable universal integrated circuit card (the traditional SIM card), an eSIM consists of software installed onto a built-in universal integrated circuit card. Telecoms body GSMA back eSIMs which were actually introduced back in 2016, and the first IoT technologies were demonstrated by semiconductor giant Qualcomm at the 2017 Mobile World Congress.

 As a programmable SIM, an eSIM can be deployed to connect to the network that best supports the end device. Therefore CIOs are not bound by network contracts or hampered by one network having poor performance in an area where the organisation needs a sensor and the ability to collect data. “The thing with IoT is that we have talked about it for 12 years with machine-to-machine connectivity, yet we haven’t done it yet. IoT is the biggest unrealised opportunity in IT,” Earle says from his office in the science park area of Guildford, UK. “Why? There are fundamental structural problems in the industry that are inhibiting interoperability.” Eseye believes that eSIM is the standardisation opportunity that will overcome those interoperability problems and enable IoT to become viable. Earle adds that this is the common theme of the technology story. “The early mobiles meant you could only call people on the same network,” he says, likening the current situation to the early 90s. This is inhibiting technology providers and the options available to CIOs.

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