Does the Google Pixel 6a have eSIM?

Does the Google Pixel 6a have eSIM?

So you’ve seen the commercials or ads and got a little curious about the Google Pixel 6a. Who wouldn’t blame you, it’s a powerhouse of a smartphone, powered by Google’s flagship Tensor processor and offering a polarizing yet unique design. Of course, you might already know all the ins and outs, like its dual 12MP cameras and in-display fingerprint reader, but what about whether it can accept an eSIM? That’s a specification that some might not even consider when purchasing a smartphone. So does the Google Pixel 6a have the ability to activate an eSIM? Long story short, it does, like most phones released in 2022. But what is an eSIM exactly, and how does it work? Let’s check it out.


What is an eSIM?

An eSIM is an embedded SIM. That means the SIM is already a part of your smartphone and can be activated without needing a physical SIM card. Traditionally, a wireless carrier will provide you with a SIM card that will get inserted into your phone so that it can have wireless service. So how is the eSIM different from a traditional SIM card? Beyond the obvious, an eSIM can be programmed multiple times, whereas a traditional SIM can only be programmed once. An eSIM can also be programmed with two different numbers. But in this situation, only one number can be used simultaneously. Last, there is no physical component to the eSIM, it is inside the phone, so this increases its security.

How do you program an eSIM?

The best thing about an eSIM is that most times, it can be programmed from the comfort of your own home. Since it is a digital component, wireless carriers can activate service without having a customer come into a retail store. But there is one important thing to note, some carriers do not offer eSIM support, so be sure to confirm with your carrier before choosing to activate service with an eSIM. Once you’ve confirmed you can activate using an eSIM, it’s time to move on to the next step.

So first, you’re going to turn on your device, set it up, and connect to a Wi-Fi network. From there, you will need to locate your Embedded Identity Document (EID) number. If you don’t know how to do this, you’ll head into the Settings menu, go to About phone, scroll down until you find the SIM status menu, and finally scroll down to EID. Select EID to get your number. You will need to give this number to your wireless carrier, so write it down or screenshot it and keep it in a safe place.

Once the wireless carrier has input the EID into their system, you will be issued a QR code. You can head to your Settings menu, then Network & Internet, and finally SIMs. Tap the “+” symbol, and on the bottom, you should see an option that says Download a SIM instead. Select Next, choose the wireless carrier in the list and scan the previously issued QR code. Begin the download for the eSIM profile, be patient as this can take up to five minutes. Once it’s complete, head back to your Settings menu, and under SIMs, you should now see a SIM for your wireless carrier. Select it and turn it on, and approve the “switch,” and from there, it should activate.

The activation process is a little bit more complex when compared to a standard SIM, but remember, this is a digital SIM, so any time you want to change service, you can. Just make sure you are not under contract with the wireless carrier. You can infinitely program the Google Pixel 6a with new eSIM cards. Of course, you’ll have to go through the procedure above. Also, if you want to have two SIMs in your phone, you can do that. If you’re curious about it, check out our Google Pixel 6a dual SIM guide.

    The Pixel 6a offers a unique style, powerful Google Tensor processor, and a good camera. What more could you ask for from a phone that costs $449.

So now that you know how to program your own eSIM, maybe it’s time to make a purchase. Currently, there are some incredible deals with the Pixel 6a. Just make sure that if you purchase it, to also pick up a protective case.

About author

Timi Cantisano
Timi Cantisano

A member of the XDA team covering consumer technology news. My passion for technology started when I purchased my first phone, the Nokia 5190. If you have questions or want to chat, contact me at [email protected] or on Twitter at @timicant.

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