Bridge Alliance, a leading mobile alliance covering 34 countries in Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, today announced a collaboration with China Unicom and Singtel to enable enterprise customers of both companies to perform embedded SIM (eSIM) changes over-the-air (OTA) without having to manually configuring their devices’ SIM cards to change networks in either China or Singapore.
The collaboration is the first between two Bridge Alliance members/partners and follows a successful eSIM swap trial in early April 2020 where China Unicom managed to swap its eSIM profiles to Singtel’s using Bridge Alliance’s technical and commercial capabilities. Under the collaboration, devices which are equipped with China Unicom eSIMs will automatically switch their profiles to Singtel’s when they are brought into Singapore. The devices’ embedded Universal Integrated Circuit Card (eUICC) will also download and activate Singtel’s profiles through a GSMA-compliant subscription manager platform.
The collaboration leverages Bridge Alliance’s current strategic IoT partnership with China Unicom and paves the way for Singtel to play a key role in facilitating cross-border IoT connectivity across China and Singapore.
With more IoT devices being built with eSIMs and cross-border eSIM swap collaborations being arranged, switching cellular networks abroad becomes easier. This enables enterprises operating across the Asia Pacific region to enjoy local data SIM rates rather than being charged roaming rates, making it more cost effective to roll out IoT across the region.
“This is an exciting international collaboration we are embarking on. China Unicom will develop overseas markets with our partners such as Bridge Alliance and Singtel and provide top level services to our customers,” said Mr He Fei, Assistant General Manager, China Unicom IoT Company.
A study by Markets and Markets reported that the global eSIM market would grow at a compound annual growth rate of 31% between 2018 and 2023 to reach 1.168 billion units valued at US$978 million.
(This content is surmised from a press release)