Public lighting, a promising market for the eSIM

Public authorities are increasingly interested in eSIM technology to renew their public lighting fleet due to its flexibility.

2023 will mark a new stage in the rise of eSIMs, the telecom company assures transatel. A certainty backed by the numbers: the global eSIM market is set to grow from $4.7 billion in 2023 to $16.3 billion in 2027, according to Juniper Research. In terms of volume, the company Kore wirelesswhich marketed more than one million eSIM cards in 2021, estimates that the number of eSIMs worldwide will double from 430 million modules at the end of 2022 to 822 million in 2025. On the consumer side, Samsung is expected to announce this year after Apple in 2022 the generalization of theeSIM for their new line of connected products. In BtoB, smart cities are scaling their public lighting projects and 88% of them will embed eSIM, according to Kore Wireless.

This growth can be explained by “the need for municipalities to ensure better energy management and save money,” explains William Gouesbet, CEO of guylink, which derives almost 80% of its revenue from the smart city market. An observation also noted in Meana company specializing in the design and manufacture of lighting that upgraded all of its products with eSIMs two years ago: “Municipalities are focusing on lighting to save money. For example, the city of Talence (in Gironde) achieved 83% energy savings by renovating its fleet. There are still many possibilities, because of the 10 million light points in France, 40% are obsolete and only 15% have been replaced by LEDs. At the moment of renovation, the local authorities are now introducing eSIM,” says Christophe Bresson, Communications Director.

“With the mobile network of an operator, the municipality does not have to set up its own network”

Because the main advantage of the eSIM is its flexibility, with the promise of being able to change operators remotely and transparently in real time. “If they want to update or switch subscriptions, it wouldn’t be feasible to do it manually once everything is done photo (Firmware over-the-air, editor’s note) with the eSIM,” recalls Christophe Bresson, for whom the eSIM is also beneficial in geographic areas where fiber optics are not installed. especially since LTE-M or NB-IoT offers are now offered at competitive prices,” explains Hatem Oueslati, CEO ofIoTeropa French start-up specializing in device management, adding, drawing on his experience with Urban Control, which has deployed more than 200,000 modules for public lighting in the UK: “Upgradability is a Keys to a publicly lit park destined to hold office for at least fifteen years.”

The second strong advantage in favor of the eSIM, the bandwidth its mobile networks. Connected lighting is often a gateway to the development of new applications. “The boxes that benefit from the network NB IoT a greater coverage and height, can also be used to measure pollutant particles or for sound detection,” notes Hatem Oueslati. Likewise, lighting projects at Transatel generally include “connected video surveillance cameras on the masts or counting sensors”, says Jacques Bonifay, its president, Underlining, that the eSIM inherently reduces the mass in the module.

If these advantages of the eSIM catch on, the technology will still be relatively unknown in France. “The technology has been available since 2017, but in the French market many customers think that we cannot benefit from eSIM in routers,” regrets Benjamin Buscayret, director of Kore Wireless in France. “The market has not developed so far because many users are still used to it Wireless and we’re still at a stage where we need to take the time to explain the benefits of the technology to them. This will change with 5G and industrial surveillance requirements,” concludes Jacques Bonifay.

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