If you want a phone with an eSIM but don’t want to pay thousands of pounds, good news, you won’t have to. Cheap Android eSIM phones are not a myth.
There are several cheap Android phones with eSIM capabilities that don’t skimp on design, performance, or features.
We have listed all the budget eSIM Android phones currently on the market and covered some common questions about Android eSIM devices.
Most eSIM Phones Are Android
Most of the phones on the market that are eSIM enabled are Android.
Contrary to popular belief, eSIM is not restricted to iPhone. In fact, the first eSIM phones were Android and they have been dominating the market since their debut.
Samsung eSIM phones are the most prolific and best Android eSIM phones by far, but Huawei is a close second. Google has also turned out to be a key OEM of eSIM phones with its wildly popular Google Pixel eSIM smartphones.
The Best Budget Android eSIM Phones
You don’t need an expensive smartphone to reap the benefits of embedded SIM technology. But which Android phones are eSIM compatible and don’t cost too much?
These Android phones have an eSIM and are easy on the wallet.
- Google Pixel 3 Series (3a, 3a XL, 3 XL)
- Google Pixel 4 and 4a (including 5G version)
- Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
- Samsung Galaxy Z Flip
- Huawei P40 Series (P40, P40 Pro, P40 Pro Lite)
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro
This list will expand as more eSIM smartphones are released.
If you want one of the high-end models but don’t want to splash out tons of cash, you could also consider buying a second hand eSIM phone.
See our complete list of eSIM enabled phones
What You Need to Know About Setting Up and Using eSIM Android Phones
After you have chosen a cheap Android eSIM phone, you need to get and set up your eSIM service. This is how you enable and use an embedded SIM on an Android device.
This may vary depending on the device you have and what country you got it from.
How to Activate an eSIM on Android Devices
Using an eSIM on Android smartphones is extremely easy and eSIM plans are widely available. All you have to do is scan a QR code and your eSIM plan will be activated.
To set up an eSIM service on your Samsung Galaxy phone, follow these steps:
- Go to Settings > Connections
- Select SIM Card Manager
- Tap on Add Mobile Plan
- Select Don’t have a SIM card?
- Scan your QR code
- Tap on Register > OK
- Your eSIM should now be active
The eSIM setup process is similar on most Android phones.
Using an eSIM on Android
Your phone must be unlocked in order to use an eSIM service from a provider other than the one you originally bought the phone from.
After you buy an eSIM plan and connect to a network you will be sent a text message with a MSISDN phone number. This is the number for your new eSIM service.
If you are using an eSIM for dual-SIM functionality, you won’t need to worry about managing the two lines. You will need to allocate plans initially, but calls and messages will automatically route to the assigned number or plan after this.
To top up your eSIM plan, all you need to do is visit the eSIM.net website or app and buy more, exactly as you did when you purchased the eSIM service.
An Auto Top-Up feature is available that automatically tops up your credit every 3 months.
To check your remaining balance you dial *187# into your phone.
Using an eSIM is as simple as that!
What is an eSIM Again?
An eSIM, or embedded universal integrated circuit card (eUICC), is a programmable chip embedded inside certain phones that serves the same purpose as a regular SIM.
eSIMs use remote SIM provisioning to connect to a wireless network over-the-air (OTA). It is specification realised by the GSMA that makes plastic SIM cards unnecessary.
An eSIM can store multiple profiles on one chip and be programmed and reprogrammed as needed. This means you can store several eSIM plans on one device and switch between carriers as you please, including while travelling abroad.
Are you ready for the embedded SIM experience?
Explore our eSIM plans for cheap Android eSIM phones
eSIM.net is a registered MVNO based in the United Kingdom and one of the world’s leading eSIM providers. We offer a range of bespoke domestic and international 5G enabled prepaid eSIM plans for over 200 countries around the world.