Telstra finally joins eSIM club in time for iPhone 11 launch

(Image credit: Future)

Today, Telstra has announced that it will be offering eSIM compatible plans from Friday, September 20, allowing customers who purchase the latest iPhone 11 devices launching that day to forego the physical SIM card.

Optus and Vodafone already adopted the technology earlier in the year, allowing any compatible device to use its eSIM (embedded Subscriber Identity Module) in place of the regular plastic card that you’d need to insert.

This also allows users who own devices compatible with both dual SIM and eSIM technologies to have two services active at once. This can be handy if you need to switch between numbers for work and personal use, for instance, or when travelling abroad and using an international SIM.

It’s not just the smartphone world that’s been incorporating eSIM tech however – a wide range of LTE-capable tablets, 2-in-1s, laptops, and even smartwatches have launched with the new tech, and the list of compatible devices is growing exponentially.

While the list of supported devices is rather long at this stage, Australian carriers haven’t fully opened up compatibility with every device. The Samsung Galaxy Watch along with the Apple Watch Series 3, Series 4 and Series 5 should all be compatible on Optus, Telstra and Vodafone.

Same goes for the upcoming lineup of iPhone 11 handsets, as well as last year’s iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max. Unfortunately, Google's Pixel 2 and 3 ranges currently only utilise their eSIM capabilities in the US where Project Fi is live.

If in doubt, check the website of your device manufacturer for a full list of specs and double check this with your telco. In coming months, a small eSIM logo should start showing up on phone listings from the likes of Optus, Telstra and Vodafone as the technology becomes more ubiquitous.

Harry Domanski
Harry is an Australian Journalist for TechRadar with an ear to the ground for future tech, and the other in front of a vintage amplifier. He likes stories told in charming ways, and content consumed through massive screens. He also likes to get his hands dirty with the ethics of the tech.