Podcast #77: Exploring eSIM Benefits for India’s Digital Growth

eSIM technology is seeing rapid growth. It is being adopted by OEMs in premium smartphones, smartwatches, and tablets, freeing up space for sleeker designs. In our previous podcasts, we spoke about the global eSIM market, innovative business models from various companies, eSIM testing, interoperability, and much more.

In this latest episode of ‘The Counterpoint Podcast’, we look at eSIM opportunities in India, one of the fastest-growing markets in the world. Host Mohit Agrawal is joined by two Kigen officials – VP of Marketing Bee-Hayes Thakore and Regional VP Solutions Mayank Sharma. Kigen is among the companies named as leaders in Counterpoint’s latest eSIM rankings. It is a fast-growing company, renowned across the industry for its eSIM enablement. Kigen also pioneered iSIM technology.

Click the play button to listen to the podcast

You can read the podcast transcript here.

Key takeaways from the discussion

Global eSIM adoption:

• Over 400 operators globally offer eSIM, and the market is expected to grow 3-4x by 2027.
• With increasing use cases beyond smartphones and automotive (including wearables, smart meters, logistics and telematics), eSIM adoption is on a positive trajectory.
• Customer premises equipment (CPE) supporting fixed wireless access (FWA) is also driving eSIM adoption.

Initiatives in India:

• Kigen has established a fully GSMA-certified SAS-UP data center in India’s Noida for local eSIM manufacturing and procurement.
• Kigen is actively collaborating with Indian manufacturers to leverage eSIM technology.
• It is supporting the government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative by making it possible for local manufacturers to compete globally.
• Kigen is working to make the adoption process simpler for manufacturers by supporting different types of devices.
• It is also streamlining the provisioning process.
• Factory profile provisioning enables manufacturers to select the operator connectivity in the later stages of the production cycle, thus increasing flexibility.

Key challenges:

• Educating consumers about the benefits of eSIM technology is one of the biggest challenges.
• Ensuring the affordability and long-term viability of eSIM-enabled devices for complex devices like smart meters is another challenge.
• There is also a need for shared business models and partnerships to make devices and technology affordable.
• Managing multiple operator profiles while also ensuring compatibility across different regions and circles can be challenging for device makers.


• In terms of opportunities, secure eSIM technology in infrastructure projects, and smart meters can be beneficial.
• eSIM can offer a secure way to connect devices for banking and mobile payments using companion devices.
• Growth in companion devices can benefit greatly from eSIM technology.

Analyst takeaways

• Kigen is looking at telematics and fixed wireless access (FWA) as the key growth areas for eSIM. FWA is a force multiplier as it enables connectivity in areas that are not covered by fiber. Connectivity, in turn, spurs demand for other consumer and enterprise devices such as point-of-sale (POS) terminals.
• Kigen has made significant investments in India as it views it as a focus market. It has established a SAS-UP certified manufacturing facility in India. India is the fastest-growing IoT market and an early commitment from Kigen will go a long way in establishing it within the Indian manufacturing ecosystem.
• Smart meters represent the biggest cellular IoT opportunity at the moment and for the next few years. India will see over 200 million smart meters installed over the next 4-5 years, offering a big opportunity for Kigen and other players in the ecosystem.

Podcast chapter markers:

1:20 – Mayank and Bee introduce themselves.

4:28 – Bee talks about the global adoption of eSIM.

8:37 – Mayank talks about how eSIM helps Indian operators.

10:23 – Bee talks about how eSIM benefits consumers.

12:45 – Bee sheds light on the impact of eSIM on digital consumption.

15:21 – Mayank highlights some of Kigen’s initiatives in India.

16:26 – Bee talks about the challenges and opportunities in the Indian market.

20:40 – Mayank on how Kigen supports various devices across consumer and enterprise domains.

22:42 – Mayank on how to embed connectivity in factory profile provisioning.

24:59 – Bee and Mayank’s closing remarks on expectations for 2024.

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