T-Mobile’s Latest Announcement is an eSIM which Removes Roaming Costs on Connected Devices

February 18, 2014 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Today, T-Mobile announced a new type of SIM card. It’s an eSIM. Which is a ready-to-use SIM card that companies can preload on their connected devices. Like wearables and smart cards. This is part of their Uncarrier 3.0, which saw giving you free roaming in 100 countries, if you’re on a postpaid account. Magenta is now looking to bring that same convenience to the connected car market. Obviously where roaming charges can get pretty high. Especially here in my area, where we’ll just hop across the border to Canada at random times.

According to T-Mobile, the Internet of Things, is exploding. The carrier is citing numbers from ABI Research which estimates that the number of independently connected wireless devices will grow from 10 billion in 2013 to 30 billion by 2020 with bigger and better mobile networks that will contribute to that growth.

T-Mobile also describes how the eSIM works. T-Mobile is making it easy for innovative companies to embrace the M2M revolution. T-Mobile M2M enables always-on connectivity for products and services through T-Mobile’s nationwide network and international partners. Companies are able to build eSIM into an assortment of connected product categories including connected car and navigation, mobile health and wearables, among many others.

The savings with the use of an eSIM are pretty large. This is going to be pretty huge for trucking companies, that travel between the US, Canada and even Mexico. Between GPS like Google Maps, Video monitoring, email, fleet tracking software, and vehicle diagnostics, a single truck might easily use 100MB of data per month while traveling in Canada. Which brings the roaming cost to around $200 per month or $2400 per year. And that’s at just 100MB. I’m sure truckers will use a lot more than 100MB. As I know several that will stream music while they are traveling, and that adds up really quickly.

It’s going to be interesting to see how this all pans out for T-Mobile and these companies throughout the year, and if it actually takes off. But it sounds like a pretty good idea, at least to me. As always, you can sound off in the comments below.