eSIMs, or electronic SIM cards, have revolutionized the way users activate cellular plans on their devices. Instead of relying on physical SIM cards, eSIMs offer a digital alternative that provides the same functionalities. In Nigeria, the introduction of eSIMs by major telecommunications providers has paved the way for seamless connectivity. This article serves as a comprehensive guide, exploring the phones and mobile networks that support eSIM in Nigeria, along with instructions on how to activate and use eSIMs. Additionally, we will highlight the benefits of utilizing eSIM technology.
eSIM Support in Nigeria’s Mobile Networks: Presently, three prominent telecommunications companies in Nigeria support eSIM technology: MTN Nigeria, 9Mobile, and Airtel. MTN Nigeria pioneered eSIM integration in July 2020, followed by 9Mobile in early August 2020, and Airtel in January 2023.
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What is eSIM?
Understanding eSIM Technology: eSIMs were introduced globally in 2016 as the next-generation SIM card, succeeding the Nano SIM cards launched in 2012. Functioning similarly to a second SIM card in devices with dual SIM slots, eSIMs provide an additional phone number without requiring a physical SIM card. Activation involves scanning a QR code assigned to the eSIM during the initial setup process.
How to use MTN eSIM
MTN Nigeria offers a trial period for their eSIM service, lasting 365 days and available on a first-come, first-served basis to a limited number of subscribers with compatible devices. To register the MTN eSIM, visit any MTN store and complete the activation process with the assistance of a customer care agent. This activation incurs no cost to the subscriber. Once your device is certified compatible, the agent will create an account profile for you, seamlessly integrating the eSIM with your phone. Notably, MTN eSIM cards boast an increased contact storage capacity, accommodating more than 200 contacts compared to physical SIM cards.
How to use 9Mobile eSIM
The process for obtaining a 9Mobile eSIM closely mirrors that of MTN. Customers can visit select 9Mobile Experience Centres to request eSIM activation. Upon request, a QR code will be provided for scanning, facilitating the download of an eSIM profile and subsequent SIM registration. Furthermore, customers who activate the 9Mobile eSIM at an Experience Centre are eligible for up to 7GB of free data. If you already possess a traditional SIM card and wish to switch to an eSIM, a simple SIM swap will suffice.
How to use Airtel eSIM
To determine the compatibility of your smartphone with Airtel Nigeria’s eSIM, dial *#06# and check if your device displays an EID number. Visit the nearest Airtel Service Centre, where knowledgeable customer care agents will guide you through the setup process and help you activate your eSIM. Consult the Airtel Centre to locate the Service Centre closest to you.
Activating eSIM on Apple iPhones
- Obtain the QR code from your network provider’s customer care agent.
- Open Settings, then go to Cellular.
- Tap “Add Cellular Plan.”
- Scan the QR code received from the customer care agent.
- If prompted, enter the confirmation code associated with the QR code to activate the eSIM.
Activating eSIM on Android Phones
There are two methods to activate eSIM on Android phones:
Method 1: Using a QR Code Scanner App
- Scan your eSIM QR code using a QR code scanner app.
- When the “Cell Plan Detected” notification appears, tap on it.
- Press “Continue” at the bottom of the screen.
- Select “Add a Cell Plan.”
- If prompted for a confirmation code, enter the number provided by your operator.
Method 2: Using the SIMO App in Nigeria
SIMO is a convenient app that facilitates eSIM connection. Compatible phone models for using SIMO in Nigeria include Tecno, Infinix, iTel, etc. Follow these steps:
- Download and open the SIMO app.
- Set up the eSIM profile within the app.
- Click “Connect” to establish an online connection.
- Purchase a suitable data plan.
- Seek support within the SIMO app if needed.
Benefits of Using eSIM in Nigeria
Utilizing eSIM technology in Nigeria offers several advantages over traditional physical SIM cards:
- Global Functionality: eSIMs store multiple cellular profiles, enabling seamless connectivity worldwide.
- Simplicity and Convenience: With eSIMs, there’s no need for SIM card cutting or adapters. Additionally, eSIMs don’t require a specific slot for insertion.
- Enhanced Security: Since eSIMs are embedded in the device, they cannot be misplaced or lost. Furthermore, eSIMs provide the same level of security as detachable SIM cards, while also simplifying the process of switching between network carriers.
By exploring the phones and networks supporting eSIM in Nigeria, understanding the activation procedures, and embracing the benefits of eSIM technology, users can enjoy the convenience and flexibility that these digital SIM cards offer. Stay connected effortlessly with the power of eSIMs.