This article provides useful information about the networks that support eSIM in Nigeria and how it works. An eSIM (embedded SIM card) is a tiny chip that is built into a smartphone, wearable, or other connected device. It serves the same purpose as a physical SIM card – to connect the device to a mobile network. In essence, an eSIM is a SIM card that is pre-built into your smartphone or other device.

With an eSIM, you get access to voice calls, SMS, mobile data, USSD, and all regular mobile phone services. The great advantages and benefits of the eSIM is that there is no need to carry around, cut or trim, a physical SIM card. Because it is also smaller, it allows for slimmer devices to be designed and built.

Does eSIM work in Nigeria? Definitely.
Does eSIM work in Nigeria? Definitely.

Does eSIM work in Nigeria, and on which mobile networks?

Yes; eSIM services are already available in Nigeria and they work. The first mobile network to launch eSIM in Nigeria was MTN, in July 2020. Shortly after, in August 2020, 9mobile also launched its eSIM service. As at the time of this article, the mobile networks that offer eSIM in Nigeria are:

How to activate eSIM with your mobile network

The process for activating eSIM is the same across any of the mobile networks. You need to have an eSIM compatible phone and go to your mobile operator’s service centre, and request for an eSIM. You can activate it on a new line, or swap your existing line to eSIM.

How to attach eSIM profile on iPhone and Android phones

To activate eSIM if you have a compatible Apple iPhone:

  1. Get the QR code from your mobile network’s customer care agent
  2. On your iPhone, go to Settings -> Cellular.
  3. Tap Add a cellular plan.
  4. Scan the QR code that you received from the customer care agent
  5. The customer care agent will associate the SIM serial and PUK number on the QR code with your mobile number.

To activate eSIM if you have a compatible Android smartphone (this example is with a Google Pixel 3):

  1. Get the QR code from your mobile network’s customer care agent
  2. On your Android phone, go to Settings -> Network & internet, and select Mobile Network
  3. Expand Advanced, then tap Carrier and Add Carrier
  4. Scan the QR code you were given by the customer care agent
  5. The customer care agent will associate the SIM serial and PUK number on the QR code with your mobile number.
eSIM on MTN Nigeria
eSIM is available on MTN Nigeria

Answers to Questions about eSIM in Nigeria

Which phones support eSIM in Nigeria?

There are now scores of smartphones in Nigeria that are eSIM compatible. For now, eSIM ios available mostly in premium, high-end smartphones and devices only. They include:

  • Apple iPhone XS and newer models
  • Google Pixel 2 and newer models
  • Samsung Galaxy S-series from S20
  • Samsung Galaxy Note series from Note20
  • Samsung Gear watches
  • Samsung Galaxy Z and Galaxy Fold devices and newer
  • Nokia G60 5G, Nokia X30 5G

Are there any TECNO phones with eSIM?

As at the time of this article, there are no TECNO phones in Nigeria with eSIM. The same goes for Infinix and itel phones.

Which networks support eSIM in Nigeria?

Does Glo have or support eSIM?

At this time, no. Glo does not support eSIM yet in Nigeria.

How to get MTN eSIM

For details on how to get MTN eSIM, read this account and guide: How I got MTN eSIM activated.

How to transfer MTN eSIM to another phone

For instructions, read our guide here.

Can I use my eSIM profile multiple times and on multiple phones?

Yes; you can. However, you can only use it on one phone at a time. You can swap/switch it to another phone at any time by going to your mobile network’s service centre to request for a swap.

Do I require data to download my eSIM profile?

Yes, your smartphone will need to be connected to a data network to download the eSIM profile.

What does it cost to get an eSIM activated?

eSIM activation is free of charge at both MTN and 9mobile.

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By Mister Mobility

Tech blogging since 2003, I have owned and reviewed hundreds of smartphones running EPOC, Symbian, Palm, PocketPC, Windows Mobile, BlackBerry, BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.

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