As Apple Watch sales slide, can the eSIM that is fitted in Samsung's smartwatch offerings offer hope for the future of wearables?
What Is the future of the smartwatch?
Although it was launched with much fanfare, Apple’s Watch has seen sales slide – down by more than half between April and June compared to the same period last year.
Now Samsung is hoping that its offering can be much more successful.
That is because one model of the company’s Gear S2 (soon to be followed by the Gear S3) is the first to feature an embedded SIM card – or eSIM.
Up till now such watches have had to be connected wirelessly with the owner’s smartphone.
The eSIM means a watch can replace a smartphone and do everything you would with that phone, including making calls, sending and receiving texts, reading emails and browsing the internet.
The Samsung smartwatch has been rolling out over Europe – it went on sale in Italy this week with TIM.
It has been produced in collaboration with Gemalto, the world’s largest maker of SIM cards, which touts this as “a further step towards the digital future of the Internet of Things”.
The eSIM means an end to fiddly little cards you slip into a slot in your phone.
The new technology is being cheered by the mobile phone carriers as it will make it much easier for them to swap you from one operator to another.