How To Set Up and Use eSIM on Your iPhone

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There’s no longer any need to use a plastic SIM card with your iPhone

The iPhone XS, XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhone 11 series, iPhone 12 series, and later are all Dual SIM compatible phones.  This means you can use them with a standard plastic SIM card and an eSIM. An eSIM is a digital SIM that allows you to activate a mobile data plan from your network provider without having to use a physical SIM.  You can use both SIM types independently or at the same time, or if you’re ready to make the jump to fully digital, get rid of your plastic SIM card altogether and just use eSIM.

What is Dual SIM?

Here are just a few of the many ways that you can use a Dual SIM phone:

  • Use one number for business and another number for personal calls.
  • Add a local data plan when you’re travelling outside the country or region.
  • Have separate voice and data plans.

With iOS 13 and later, both of your phone numbers can make and receive voice and FaceTime calls and send and receive messages using iMessage, SMS and MMS (if the network service is compatible). Your iPhone can use one mobile data network at a time.

About 5G and Dual SIM

If you have iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro or iPhone 12 Pro Max, and both phone lines are active, 5G isn’t available. To use 5G on these iPhone models with a 5G-compatible network service, disable Dual SIM mode by turning off either one of your phone lines:

  1. Open the Settings app, then tap Mobile.
  2. Select the line that you want to turn off.
  3. Turn off the switch next to Turn On This Line.

Turn the line back on to return to Dual SIM mode.

What you need to set up eSIM

  • An iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR or later with iOS 12.1 or later – your phone needs to be unlocked for use with any network
  • A mobile network that supports eSIM, such as Extreme Connect.

Set up your mobile data plan with eSIM

On iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR and later, you can use a physical nano-SIM for a mobile plan and an Extreme Connect eSIM for one or more other mobile data plans. If you don’t have a SIM card and your provider supports it, an eSIM can serve as your only mobile data plan. The eSIM provided by Extreme Connect is stored digitally in your iPhone.

To activate an eSIM mobile data plan, you can use the Extreme Connect iPhone app, install an assigned plan, or you can enter the information manually:

Use the Extreme Connect app

  1. Go to the App Store and download the Extreme Connect app.
  2. Use the app to purchase a mobile data plan.
  3. Follow the steps to activate your new eSIM plan on your iPhone.

Install an assigned mobile data plan

With iOS 13 and later, some network providers can assign a mobile data plan for you to install.

If a plan was assigned to you, follow these steps:

  1. When a notification appears that says Provider Mobile Data Plan Ready to Be Installed, tap it.
  2. In the Settings app, tap Provider Mobile Data Plan Ready to Be Installed.
  3. Tap Continue, at the bottom of the screen.

Enter the information manually

If necessary, you can enter your plan information manually. To enter your plan information manually, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap either Cellular or Mobile Data.
  3. Tap Add Mobile Data Plan.
  4. Tap Enter Details Manually, at the bottom of your iPhone screen.

You can store more than one eSIM in your iPhone, but you can use only one at a time. To switch eSIMs, tap Settings, tap either Cellular or Mobile Data, and then tap the plan you want to use. Then tap Turn On This Line.

Set your default number

Choose a number to use when you call or send a message to someone who isn’t in your Contacts app. With iOS 13 and later, choose which mobile data plans you want to use for iMessage and FaceTime. With iOS 13 and later, you can choose either or both numbers.

On this screen, choose a number to be your default number, or choose which number will only be used for mobile data. Your other number will be your default. If you want your iPhone to use mobile data from both plans, depending on coverage and availability, turn on Allow Mobile Data Switching.

Use two phone numbers for calls, messages and data

Now that your iPhone has been set up with two phone numbers, here’s how to use them.

Let your iPhone remember which number to use

When you call one of your contacts, you don’t need to choose which number to use every time. By default, your iPhone will use the same number that you used the last time you called that contact. If you haven’t called that contact, your iPhone will use your default number. If you want to, you can specify which number to use for your calls with a contact. Follow these steps:

  1. Tap the contact.
  2. Tap Preferred Mobile Data Plan.
  3. Tap the number that you want to use for that contact.

Change your mobile data number

One number at a time can use mobile data. To change which number uses mobile data, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap either Cellular or Mobile Data.
  3. Tap Mobile Data.
  4. Tap the number that you want to use mobile data.

If you turn on Allow Mobile Data Switching, then while you’re on a voice call on your voice-only number, that number automatically switches to use voice and data.* This lets you use both voice and data while on the call.

If you turn off Allow Mobile Data Switching and you’re active on a voice number that isn’t your designated mobile data number, then mobile data won’t work when you’re on the call.

To turn on Allow Mobile Data Switching, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap either Cellular or Mobile Data.
  3. Tap Mobile Data.
  4. Turn on Allow Mobile Data Switching.

Manage mobile settings

To change your mobile settings for each of your plans, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap either Cellular or Mobile Data.
  3. Tap the number that you want to change.
  4. Tap each option and set it as you normally would.

The Extreme Connect app for iPhone is available to download in the Apple App Store.  An Android version is also available here.

Need more help setting up Extreme Connect or eSIM on your phone? You can email help@extremeconnect.me and we’ll be happy to help get you up and running.

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