from Industry backs eSIMs but still needs to learn the benefits of iSIM deployment, says Arm survey
by Anasia D’mello
The top three obstacles to large commercial eSIM deployments are resistance from traditional stakeholders (69%), complexity to deliver eSIMs (40%) and lock-in concerns (40%). These are among the key findings of a new survey by Arm, according to Vincent Korstanje, the company’s vice president and general manager of Emerging Businesses.
The survey also showed that 90% of respondents are aware of eSIM, however education is needed to grow the industry’s understanding of iSIM, with 43% unaware of the technology. And only 44% of those surveyed believe iSIM is as secure as a traditional SIM
As we drive towards our vision of a trillion connected devices by 2035, says Arm, one of the most critical steps towards enabling Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity is the evolution of the underlying SIM (subscriber identity module) technology. The evolution primarily involves embedded SIM (eSIM) and integrated SIM (iSIM) systems for authenticating users on existing and future 5G mobile networks.
According to the survey of 650 industry stakeholders* undertaken for processor design and technology company Arm, it is clear that the industry is well aware of the importance of deploying advanced SIM technologies.
A total of 67% view eSIM technology as a positive development and more than 80% agree it will overtake traditional SIMs. However, the industry still needs further education on the benefits that iSIM technology will deliver.
Understanding the advantages of iSIM technology
The evolution of SIM technology is crucial to ensuring secure identity can be built into any cellular IoT device, but iSIM expands integration of secure identity into even more devices ranging from smart meters to connected cars. In addition to the secure ID benefits, iSIM will also lower device costs in areas such as SIM handling. In fact, more than half (53%) of respondents believe integration of iSIM will result in lower device costs.
However, the industry still requires a broader understanding of iSIM security advantages, as only 44% of those surveyed believe iSIM is as secure as a traditional SIM. In fact, iSIM is as secure as eSIM and can offer the same level of protection of the network credentials. To help decision-makers better understand the security benefits of iSIM, Arm is working closely with standards bodies, such as the GSMA, to educate the industry and work towards a more unified approach to iSIM.
Turning awareness into adoption
When asked about the main obstacles to large eSIM deployments, feedback from respondents already aware of eSIM was as follows:
69% of respondents cited resistance from traditional stakeholders
40% noted lock-in concerns
40% mentioned complexity to deliver
This resistance may be linked to a desire to capitalise on existing solutions and investment, but Arm believes this resistance will diminish, particularly as GSMA and other standards bodies are playing an active role accelerating the evolution of SIM technologies. And based on my own conversations with decision-makers, I expect those resistance numbers will rapidly diminish as more of them experience the flexibility eSIM and iSIM offer across the entire connected device value chain.
Acceptance will soon become more pervasive among traditional stakeholders unable to ignore the innovation, […]
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