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Best eSIM Supported Phones

There are numerous smartphone models available on the market today. Some of them are equipped with eSIM and a physical SIM card slot. A few years ago, companies such as Samsung used eSIMs with smartwatches, while Apple later joined the trend. 

If you need to familiarize yourself with the capabilities of an eSIM or the advantages, it offers over a standard SIM; a previous article will provide you with essential information. 

So, let’s examine some of the best eSIM phones currently available. 

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What exactly is eSIM? 

The next generation of SIM card technology is eSIM. It eliminates the need to insert a physical SIM card into your phone. Instead of a SIM card, you will receive a programmable chip to download and install your eSIM. 

There are numerous advantages to using an eSIM compared to traditional SIM cards: 

  • eSIMs may be downloaded immediately. Installing a new eSIM requires scanning a QR code on your phone. There is no need to wait for a physical SIM card to arrive in the mail, nor is there any need to fiddle with paper clips or SIM card tray ejectors. 
  • The majority of phones support dual-SIM technology with eSIM. Most eSIM-compatible phones also support dual-SIM technology, allowing you to simultaneously have two phone numbers on your device. This would allow you, for instance, to have both your personal and work phone numbers on your phone at the same time. It is also convenient for international travel, as you can purchase a cheaper eSIM plan. 
  • eSIM can save space inside your mobile phone. With the latest smartphones packing more and more technology, device storage is becoming increasingly limited. eSIM technology helps conserve phone storage space. 

Additionally, there are disadvantages to eSIM technology: 

  • On eSIM, only a limited number of plans are available. Currently, most mobile networks only offer their plans on standard plastic SIM cards. In addition, where mobile networks offer eSIM support, it is sometimes only available on post-pay (contract) programs that are more expensive. In the United Kingdom, only three mobile networks offer eSIM plans, compared to more than twenty networks that offer traditional plastic SIM cards. 
  • With an eSIM, switching devices can be more complicated. Historically, removing the SIM card from your phone and inserting it into another device was possible. With eSIM, the process is more complex because you must remove the eSIM from your old appliance and install it on your new device. 
  • eSIM is supported by a limited number of devices only. If you wish to switch to a device that does not support eSIM, you will need to convert your eSIM to a physical SIM card. 

How To Use eSIM 

If you wish to use eSIM technology on your phone, you can order an eSIM plan from the website of your mobile network. Alternatively, you can transfer your current project to an eSIM (check with your provider to see whether this is possible). If you reside in the United Kingdom, consult our guide to eSIMs on UK networks. 

Upon activating an eSIM on your phone, you will typically be able to start dual-SIM functionality. This permits you to: 

  • Carry two phone numbers simultaneously on your phone. For instance, you can simultaneously have your work and personal phone numbers on your phone. This would allow you to make and receive calls on both numbers without carrying two separate devices. 
  • Take advantage of lower prices when traveling. When traveling abroad, you could obtain a cheaper eSIM plan, for instance. This may be less expensive than roaming with your domestic SIM card. 
  • Gain access to additional customer-only offers. You will access exclusive customer offers on your eSIM and traditional SIM. This may include EE’s Smart Benefits, O2’s inclusive Disney+, O2 Priority, Three+, and Vodafone’s VeryMe Rewards, among others. 

10 Best eSIM Supported Phones In 2022

Check if your phone is compatible with eSIM using our up-to-date compatibility guide. 

eSIMs are a significant change for global connections, so we update this list monthly with the most up-to-date information. 

1. Best Overall: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max

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Apple’s smartphones have supported eSIMs for several years, so it’s not surprising that the iPhone 13 Pro Max Pro also supports them. Enabling your SIM card is a straightforward process requiring only a few steps from the Settings menu. However, contacting your carrier for precise activation instructions on your iPhone 13 Pro Max is recommended. 

The iPhone 13 Pro Max is naturally well-equipped in terms of its hardware. It features a Super Retina XDR OLED display with 2778 x 1284 pixels. The 13 Pro Max’s processor is the custom Apple A15 Bionic, which includes an integrated Hexa-core GPU. 

Due to the addition of a third sensor for the first time, the iPhone 13 Pro Max can take some of the best photos of any smartphone camera on the market today, except for the galaxy s20, which was released a few months after the 13 Pro Max. 

Given the hardware enhancements made to this flagship device, Apple’s continued promise of all-day battery life for this phone is remarkable. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Apple A15 Bionic 
  • RAM: 6 GB 
  • Storage: 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, 1 TB 
  • Display: 6.7 inches 
  • Camera: Quad Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Ion 
PROS
  • ProMotion screen brings 120Hz smoothness
  • Beefy performance
  • 3x optical zoom telephoto
  • Great cameras
CONS
  • It's really big - which won't suit all
  • Lacks on-off setting for macro photography
  • Cinematic mode capped at 1080p
  • Notch feels tired

2. Samsung Galaxy S20

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The Samsung galaxy s20 is the company’s first smartphone to include an embedded eSIM card slot. Given Samsung’s prior experience with this technology, this comes as somewhat of a surprise to everyone. However, it has finally arrived, which is all that matters. As for the Galaxy S20, you may recall the smartphone making multiple headlines before its release, which was justified by its hardware specifications. 

Beginning with a 6.2-inch, 3200 x 1440 Dynamic AMOLED display with a 120 Hz refresh rate and a 20:9 aspect ratio, the Galaxy S20 features a unique 20:9 aspect ratio. The phone is equipped with an octa-core Snapdragon 865 chipset, which is expected to power several flagship devices in 2022. 

Regarding camera technology, there are three rear cameras, including two 12MP sensors and a primary 64MP camera. The front of the device features a 10MP selfie camera capable of taking decent wide-angle self-portraits. The phone also includes 8GB of RAM, 128GB of internal storage, and a microSD card expansion slot. 

Since this is Samsung’s flagship smartphone, it comes with Android 10 and the company’s One UI 2.0 overlay. There is a 4,000 mAh battery that, according to the manufacturer, can power the device for an entire day. Additionally, 5G networks are supported by the phone. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Exynos 990 (7 nm+) 
  • RAM: 8 GB 
  • Storage: 128 GB 
  • Display: 6.2 inches 
  • Camera: Triple Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Po 4000 mAh battery 
PROS
  • Display has 120Hz refresh rate
  • Software updates guaranteed for three years
  • Improved camera with 3x lossless zoom
  • Truly impressive battery life
  • Vivid daytime and outdoor photos
  • Good size
  • Very familiar design
CONS
  • 5G not worth the added cost
  • No headphone jack

3. Best software: Google Pixel 7 Pro

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Pixel smartphones are typically centered around the camera, and the 7 Pro is no exception. It’s similar to the Pixel 6 Pro, with a high-resolution main lens, an ultrawide lens, and a periscope telephoto. Still, subtle refinements and new software tricks make it the most potent Pixel camera. 

It is powered by Android 13, Google’s second Tensor chip, and a few software features exclusive to Google’s Pixel phones. This indicates that, at least in terms of software, this provides the best Android experience. 

You’ll have to put up with slow charging (and buy your charger) and accept that this is a large phone with a polarizing design – you may love it, but there are plenty of people out there who don’t. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Google Tensor G2 
  • RAM: 12 GB 
  • Storage: 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB 
  • Display: 6.7 inches 
  • Camera: Triple Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Po 5000 mAh 
PROS
  • Clean software experience
  • Competitive price
  • Useful 2x and 10x camera crop modes
  • Powerful software tools
  • Flatter sides
  • 120Hz display
CONS
  • Not many changes from Pixel 6 Pro
  • A couple of issues with phone calls
  • Shorter battery life than the Pixel 7
  • Can get a bit warm under load
  • HDR sharing limited

4. Best camera: Vivo X80 Pro

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The Vivo X80 Pro is the latest flagship from the Chinese manufacturer, and it features a camera system that is arguably the best of any smartphone currently available. 

This camera is built for any situation thanks to its excellent primary, ultrawide, and dual telephoto rear lenses. The image quality is exceptional, especially at night, with industry-leading low-light photography. 

The phone’s appeal is rounded out by high-end specifications, a stunning display, quick charging, and a long-lasting battery, but keep in mind that the company’s Android skin holds it back – hardware this good deserves software to match. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 / MediaTek Dimensity 9000 
  • RAM: 8 GB, 12 GB 
  • Storage: 256 GB, 512 GB 
  • Display: 6.78 inches 
  • Camera: Quad Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Po 4700 mAh 
PROS
  • Good for photography
  • Fast processor
  • Quick charging
  • Loud stereo speakers
  • Snappy fingerprint reader
CONS
  • Pricey
  • Bloatware
  • Poor thermal performance

5. 5G Android Phone: Google Pixel 6 Pro

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The Pixel 6 Pro features an LTPO AMOLED display with a resolution of 3120 x 1440 for superior sunlight legibility. This is paired with a potent Octa-core Cortex-A55 processor, 6GB of RAM, 12GB of RAM, or 128GB of internal storage, 50MP + 48MP + 12MP triple rear cameras, and an 11.1MP front camera. 

The phone’s battery has a capacity of 5003 mAh and can be recharged thanks to 23W fast charging quickly. This flagship is also compatible with wireless charging, making it quite complete. Since this is a Google product, it is the first smartphone to receive the latest Android updates, including Android 12 and Android 13, which are upgradeable. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Google Tensor 
  • RAM: 12 GB 
  • Storage: 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB 
  • Display: 6.71 inches 
  • Camera: Triple Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Po 5003 mAh 
PROS
  • Comes running Android 12
  • Face unblur and Magic Eraser camera features
  • Good price for a flagship
  • Excellent 120Hz screen
  • Wireless and reverse charging
CONS
  • Contentious design
  • No microSD slot
  • Confusing 5G coverage
  • Glass design is slippery without case
  • Fingerprint sensor isn't great

6. Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

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This is the second iPhone on this list, which speaks volumes about the scarcity of eSIM phones on the market today. In terms of hardware prowess, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is undoubtedly inferior to the iPhone 13 Pro Max. However, given that Apple continues to provide timely software updates for the iPhone 12 Pro Max, it represents an excellent value. 

The resolution of the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display is 2778 x 1284. In addition, it has a quad-camera system with three 12MP sensors and a 12MP front-facing camera. Underneath the 12 Pro Max is a 3687 battery. Despite this, the smartphone should provide excellent battery life for a full day. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Apple A14 Bionic (5 nm) 
  • RAM: 6GB 
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 
  • Display: 6.7 inches Super Retina XDR OLED display 
  • Camera: Rear: 12 MP + 12 MP + 12 MP; Front :12 MP 
  • Battery: 3687mAh, 20W Fast charging 
PROS
  • Big and bold screen
  • A14 Bionic processing power
  • Tremendous battery life
  • Convenient MagSafe charging
  • Excellent cameras
CONS
  • Much the same experience as the cheaper (and smaller) iPhone 12 Pro
  • 60Hz screen behind competition at this price
  • The large camera bump
  • The lack of iPadOS-like features
  • Charger sold separately
  • A bit heavy and bulky

7. Google Pixel 5a 5G

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The list is dominated by Apple and Google smartphones. It has an eSIM card slot, allowing you to travel without removing your existing SIM card. 

The Pixel 5a 5G features a 6.34-inch OLED display with a 2400 x 1080 resolution, an octa-core Snapdragon 765G processor, 128GB of internal storage with no microSD slots, 6GB of RAM, a single 12.2MP rear camera, an 8MP front camera, and Android 11, upgradable to Android 13. The Pixel 5a 5G has a 4,680 mAh battery, which should provide all-day battery life. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Qualcomm SM7250 Snapdragon 765G 5G 
  • RAM: 6 GB 
  • Storage: 128 GB 
  • Display: 6.34 inches 
  • Camera: Dual Camera 
  • Battery: Li-Po 4680 mAh 
PROS
  • Large and super-bright OLED display
  • Excellent battery life
  • Solid still image performance
  • Stereo speakers
  • First in line for OS updates
  • IP67 water resistance
CONS
  • Limited market availability and only one color and storage option
  • No support for high screen refresh rate
  • No mmWave variant for Verizon 5G UWB in the US

8. Apple iPhone 12

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The next iPhone will include an eSIM slot, but given Apple’s track record, it would be a bizarre decision for the company to omit this feature. While the official name for the next iPhone is still uncertain, we’re sticking with iPhone 12 for now. Multiple reports have suggested that the phone’s release may be delayed this year, despite its debut being anticipated for the fall. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Apple A14 Bionic 
  • RAM: – 
  • Storage: 64 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB 
  • Display: 6.1 inches 
  • Camera: 12 MP (wide) + 12 MP (ultrawide) 
  • Battery: Li-Ion + Fast charging 18W, 50% in 30 min 
PROS
  • Powerful A14 Bionic chip
  • Excellent camera
  • Elegant design
  • Solid battery life
  • MagSafe fast charging
  • Phone ships with a USB-C to Lightning cable
CONS
  • Incremental upgrades
  • Only 64GB of base storage
  • 60Hz display
  • No more earbuds in the box

9. iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max

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The iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max feature an A13 Bionic chip (which is still incredibly powerful!) and the iconic triple-camera system, which is one step down from the A14 Bionic chip found in the iPhone 12 and iPhone mini. These handsets have a longer battery life and faster download speeds and are compatible with our eSIM data plans. 

Specification 
  • Processor: Apple A13 Bionic 
  • RAM: 6 GB 
  • Storage: 64 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB 
  • Display: 6.5 inches 
  • Camera: 12 MP (wide) + 12 MP (telephoto) + 12 MP (ultrawide) cameras 
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Ion 3500 mAh battery + Fast 
PROS
  • Nicely-textured back
  • Powerful new A13 processor
  • Tougher glass back with great finish
  • Face ID still leads the way
  • Three camera setup
  • New Super Retina XDR display
CONS
  • Very expensive
  • No bilateral charging
  • Huge size
  • Still no USB-C
  • No reverse charging
  • Cheaper iPhone 11 offers much the same
  • Some design changes are divisive
  • Even more expensive than before
  • Direct Competitors and Related Products

10. Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

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The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip is unique in appearance and compact and large in screen size (thanks to its excellent folding design). In addition, it has an ultra-wide camera with a large field of view and hands-free capabilities. Its dual battery lets you open your phone dramatically and swap eSIMs as often as you want daily! 

Specification 
  • Processor: Qualcomm SM8150 Snapdragon 855+ 
  • RAM: 8 GB 
  • Storage: 256 GB 
  • Display: 6.7 inches 
  • Camera: 12 MP + 12 MP 
  • Battery: Li-Po 3300 mAh battery 
PROS
  • Well-executed folding display with articulating hinge and improved protection from dust
  • Wireless charging and powershare
  • Gorgeous finish and design has us feeling the nostalgia
  • Galaxy Concierge Premier customer care
  • Flagship level camera experience
CONS
  • Still too expensive to justify its form factor
  • Screen is susceptible to scratching despite UTG
  • You can't see the display with polarized sunglasses
  • Battery life is average
  • No telephoto camera

What networks support eSIM?

eSIM is available from selected carriers. You’ll either need to have a carrier’s app or a QR Code you can scan. Again, the carrier will need to support eSIM.

In the UK, EE, O2 and Vodafone and Three support eSIM. Normally customers only need to pop into a local store or call customer services to get an eSIM pack or download an eSIM.

Let’s look at EE’s SIM pack. With EE you can get a traditional-looking SIM pack from a store like the one pictured here. But there’s no SIM in it; instead, you get instructions and a QR code enabling your device to pick up the details. Each eSIM pack comes with its own number just like a traditional SIM pack.

In the US, AT&T, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless support eSIM.

Away from the traditional carriers, “global mobile network” Truphone has started selling eSIM data plans. These are able to be bought via the MyTruphone app. Truphone’s international plans work across 80 countries including in Europe, the Americas and Australasia.

The app was originally available on iOS only but it is now available on Android for use with Pixel phones.

 

FAQs

This depends on your use case but switching to eSIM is a great idea if you travel frequently or need multiple phone numbers. 

No, the handset must be unlocked before a new eSIM can be installed. 

There are certain devices designated as eSIM-only. Typically, these are carrier-locked smartphones that lack a physical SIM card slot. Before purchasing an eSIM phone with dual SIM capabilities, check with your phone’s manufacturer and service provider. 

Conclusion

It is simpler to change networks. eSIM makes it significantly simpler to switch mobile networks. Rather than ordering a new SIM card, waiting for it to arrive, and then inserting it into your phone, you can change networks via phone or online. In addition, you will not need to seek out a SIM “ejector tool” to remove the old SIM from your phone. 

You can temporarily switch to a different network. A single eSIM can store up to five virtual SIM cards simultaneously. This allows you to quickly switch between networks if you find yourself in an area where your usual network has no signal. 

It also facilitates switching to a local network while traveling without inserting a local SIM card. Utilizing a local mobile network abroad can be significantly less expensive than paying roaming fees to your UK network. Removing your UK SIM card from your phone reduces the possibility of losing it. 

It allows you to have multiple SIM cards. eSIMs offer the same benefits as dual-SIM phones with two slots for traditional SIM cards, with the most obvious benefit being the ability to have two phone numbers on one device. 

This can be useful if you need personal and business numbers but want to carry only one phone. You will always be able to receive calls and texts on both numbers, and you can choose which SIM to use for making calls, sending texts, and accessing data. 

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The above article was written by the BestTopReviewsOnline team, which consists of some of the most knowledgeable technical experts in the United States. Our team consists of highly regarded writers with vast experience in smartphones, computer components, technology apps, security, and photography, among other fields.

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