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As Mobile Network Operators or Virtual Operators begin to download their subscriptions into eSIMs placed in smartphones, other consumer devices, or IoT connected sensors, their first priority is to limit the impacts on their legacy provisioning infrastructure and existing flows.

This is the reason why, for their initial phases of implementation, they tend to release physical vouchers with QR codes, mimicking the information available on the physical SIMs they are distributing to their customers in the consumer devices markets. This is also the reason why they are trying to convince their Business Customers in Machine-to-Machine markets, to use them as bootstrap as well as main connectivity provider. These first implementation steps are adequate to begin an eSIM journey, and are indeed protecting the traditional provisioning infrastructure already in place, but they are far from fulfilling the full promise of the eSIM dynamic subscription management for the consumer.

Beyond this, in order to provide the full flexibility in subscription management that is demanded by customers, it is required to significantly change the way such subscriptions are being provisioned by the MNO or MVNO.

At this stage only 2 opportunities are available for MNOs or MVNOs:

  1. Upgrade their existing provisioning infrastructure and flows, and integrating them with Subscription Management APIs as specified by the GSMA. Those processes prove to be cumbersome, risky, and expensive. Although the technological change is disruptive, there is still a need to continue managing the traditional SIMs for business-as-usual, while capturing the business opportunities proposed by the eSIM ecosystem.
  1. Use an external orchestration platform, ideally as a service, in order to:
    • Ease the integration of Subscription Management platforms with the legacy M(V)NO infrastructure components (HLR, BSS, SMSC*, GGSN*), as well as in the case of several geographical operations to be coordinated, or third-party Subscription Management platforms to integrate*. An external orchestration platform will provide the necessary flexibility to conduct the integration work with the M(V)NO infrastructure components, rather than requesting each one to accommodate the protocols and APIs specified by the GSMA
    • Manage the new provisioning flows related to the eSIM whereby the subscriptions will need to be fully provisioned in real time or near-to-real time as opposed to the ones attached to traditional SIMs
    • Prepare the ground to make further digital changes in other corresponding processes affected by the eSIM ecosystem, such as customer enrollment (through new “eKYC” Know-your-Customer flows), new payment methods proposed in IoT or Consumer Devices environments, etc…

Using this guided step-by-step implementation approach, Valid has developed a corresponding aggressive business model to the full benefit of MNOs, minimizing initial investments and CAPEX costs, while maximizing future revenue generation.

*: in the case of Machine-to-Machine

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