If you’re lucky enough to be getting your hands on a brand-new iPhone 15 and you have plans for international travel, get ready to experience the iPhone 15 eSIM hack that’s going to allow you to save big bucks on roaming charges.
Depending on which iPhone you’re upgrading from, your new iPhone 15 might be your first experience using an embedded SIM card (eSIM). eSIMs are easier and more flexible than traditional plastic SIM cards, and they make it easy to hop onto different networks.
Ready or not, we’re going to run through a quick iPhone 15 eSIM primer with everything you need to know.
What is an eSIM?
An eSIM is a digital, downloadable SIM card that can be added to any eSIM compatible device, like the iPhone 15. Most iPhones are already eSIM compatible (iPhone XR and newer), so you may have been using eSIMs for a while now, or they might be brand-new to you. When you install an iPhone eSIM, it’s like inserting a new SIM card because it allows your iPhone to connect to new networks.
What are the benefits of eSIM?
The biggest eSIM benefit is that you can travel the world, bring your iPhone 15, and easily add local eSIMs (digital SIM cards) and connect to those networks as if you were a local citizen. eSIM makes it affordable to have prepaid mobile data in another country, without relying on sporadic Wi-Fi or racking up roaming charges with your carrier back home.
What if I won’t be travelling?
No problem at all! Your iPhone 15 will still come with eSIM capabilities, and you can think of any eSIMs as “SIM cards that never come out.” They work exactly the same way as physical SIM cards, except you can delete them (versus physically removing them) and you can store a bunch of them at once.
Is iPhone 15 eSIM only?
If you purchase an iPhone 15 within the United States, it will be eSIM only. This means there won’t be a slot for a physical SIM card, and you will be able to install and activate eSIMs (digital SIM cards) instead. iPhone 15 models purchased outside of the United States will still have a traditional SIM card slot, but they will be eSIM compatible depending on their location. (iPhone 15 models purchased in Mainland China, Hong Kong, or Macao may not support eSIM.)
Can I call and text with an eSIM?
If your regular phone plan is connected to an eSIM (versus a traditional SIM card), then you’ll be using your eSIM to make/receive phone calls and send/receive text messages, as well as use mobile data.
If you’re using a travel eSIM, these are typically data-only eSIMs that do not come with a phone number, so they can’t be used for calling and texting. However, there are other ways to call and text while you’re using an eSIM for vacation data, like iMessage, FaceTime, using a temporary internet phone number from an app like Hushed, or using social media.
Where do I buy an iPhone 15 eSIM?
If you have an iPhone 15 and need a primary SIM for home use (a regular phone number, data plan, etc.), you can speak with a local carrier and ask about their options.
If you’ll be travelling internationally with your iPhone 15, you can shop online for an eSIM data package, or use a free eSIM app like aloSIM. Just choose a country or region, decide how much prepaid data you’d like to start with, and complete your purchase.
How do I install an iPhone 15 eSIM?
It only takes about two minutes to install an iPhone 15 eSIM. Make sure you’re on a strong Wi-Fi or data connection so you can download the eSIM and complete the installation, and then follow the instructions from your eSIM provider.
Here are aloSIM, we know everyone learns differently, so we provide different eSIM installation instructions:
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How do I activate a data package?
If you purchase a prepaid data package from an eSIM provider like aloSIM, it will include detailed instructions on how to activate your iPhone 15 eSIM data package so you can begin using it. Each data package has a certain length of time it can be used (i.e. 7 days, 15 days, 30 days) so you don’t want to activate it until you’re ready to use it.
If you’ve purchased a data package from aloSIM, you can choose your preferred type of instructions:
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