Visible just increased the capability of converting your physical SIM card from the carrier to a more streamlined and virtual eSIM. I decided to try it out since Visible now supports eSIM conversion on the Pixel 6. The ride turned out to be less smooth than I had anticipated.

What is an ESIM and what advantages does it offer? We’ve been accustomed to the SIM card ever since the creation of contemporary devices and the carriers that support them. That tiny plastic card served as your key to any network of your choosing. It stored your phone number and occasionally even all of your contacts, and depending on your network, no matter which phone you switched it to, you could have a steady signal.

Now, for appropriate devices, many carriers are providing eSIMs, or digital SIM cards. These virtual cards offer a far simpler alternative to switching carriers or even obtaining temporary coverage when traveling abroad. By downloading the eSIM from the carrier, you can quickly connect to the network without having to wait for a real SIM card to be shipped, which could take weeks. Additionally, if you lose your cellphone, obtaining a new eSIM is quite easy and can be completed in a matter of minutes using your replacement device.

Expanding ESIM compatibility is VISIBLE. I’ve been using Visible for well over two years at this point. I’ve encountered a few minor glitches throughout that time, but nothing significant enough to justify switching. The overall quality of the service has been good, and I have no hesitation in suggesting Visible as a more than capable provider to anyone in the market. Having said that, I did encounter a unique circumstance that caused me to lose service for well over eight hours.

Visible launched an extension for a number of Android smartphones less than a week ago that gave them access to eSIMs. Users of the Pixel 6 and a variety of other devices now have the option to upgrade to Visible and download an eSIM or convert their current SIM to an eSIM, effectively updating their network connection.

ON MY PIXEL 6 I AM CHANGING TO AN ESIM WITH VISIBLE Now, switching from a physical SIM card can be risky in general. It’s fine if you decide to join with an eSIM and begin from fresh with a new carrier. When you attempt to convert your physical card to a digital one, a problem occurs. Although the exact reason why this produces problems is unclear, it does.

But I still gave it a shot. I knew it wouldn’t be very smooth, but I had no idea what I was getting myself into. When you enter Visibles Android app to start the conversion procedure, the very first thing you see is a very large message that says, “Transfer your SIM.” Unaware customers might observe this and go blindly, believing that everything will go according to plan. I accidentally clicked Get started now to start the converting procedure.

I was then prompted to enter my IMEI. For the sake of honesty, I’ll let you know that my Pixel 6 has two IMEI numbers, referred to as IMEI Slots 1 and 2. Due to the Pixel 6’s ability to support twin SIMs, at least one of which is virtual, this is a typical occurrence. The secondary IMEI was because I had previously obtained an eSIM from a temporary travel network. Although it’s likely that this is where some of my problems originated from, I took care to destroy this other eSIM before starting this process.

I tapped Next after entering my slot 1 IMEI. Following that, Visible verified that my Pixel 6 was compatible. When that check is successful, you can proceed to the transfer stage. There are a few factors to keep in mind, which Vsibile lists below:

Activate Wi-Fi Remove the physical SIM only once the transfer has been completed. Make sure your phone is turned on and charged.

visible esim directions
visible sim dard
Convert to Visible eSIM Android SIM Card

I made the decision to continue after making sure I was adhering to these seemingly straightforward rules.

It gets worse from here. My Pixel 6 began to have problems as I confidently tapped Transfer now. This page displayed a progress bar, and after a full minute, the bar actually began moving forward. It took roughly five minutes to reach 99% until an error notice with the message “Something went wrong” abruptly appeared.

Although it was a little depressing to see that, I never lost hope. With the same level of assurance as previously, I clicked Try again, at which point I encountered the identical error message. I didn’t know that you can only tap Try again a certain number of times before you’re locked out altogether and must contact support in order to continue. Another surprise was that my physical SIM was rendered utterly useless following the final failed attempt. The Visibles network was not reachable, as indicated by an error symbol on the Pixel 6s network readout.

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esim card convert android

I can only presume that the procedure disabled my present SIM in anticipation of my being eligible for Visibles eSIM. I contacted assistance, and I was given a few standard tasks to complete. The initial fix was activating Airplane mode for 30 to 90 seconds before turning it off. I was also advised to restart my phone and then try the Airplane mode approach once more. Both of these failed to function. This unsuccessful advice only made it a little more annoying. I was told by Visible Support that I had run out of time during the conversion process and would need to wait around an hour for it to reset before I could attempt again. Mind you, I didn’t have cellular data, and I couldn’t send or receive texts or calls from anyone. I got off the assistance even though this was the case and waited.

I crawled back to support after about two hours with the same issue message in my Visible app. I was advised to try a few of the same ideas as well as a fresh one, including removing the physical SIM card, rebooting, turning off my device, then reinserting the SIM. Unsurprisingly, despite numerous attempts, this also failed.

I was informed that my case would be forwarded to a higher support line following the most recent effort to restart my phone. Unfortunately, I was also informed that it would be handled via email and that I might expect to hear from support in up to four hours, which was disappointing but still a step in the right direction. I waited with no cellular connectivity and no answers. Eight hours later, it wasn’t until 10:30 pm that I received a message from Visibles tech support.

A technically sound conversion that took 7 hours longer than necessary I was shocked to discover that the conversion process had reset and was now starting to function at this point. My eSIM profile had to be downloaded once more, and some adjustments had to be made in the backend, according to the email I received from support. I discovered that the eSIM had been downloaded successfully and that Play Services had taken over to complete initializing my new eSIM in Android when I reopened the Visible app to check on the status of my SIM.

esim card conversion android
esim not working android visuble

Despite the fact that the outcome was good and I avoided having to ask for a new actual SIM card in the mail, the process was full of unnecessary minor steps.

While it’s great that Visible has made a point of working toward a fully-eSIM future, there are some clear issues in the backend that must be resolved first.

The way Visible handles SIM conversions is the primary issue I have with the entire procedure. Everything began when I received a cheery notification from my Visible app encouraging me to switch my SIM to an eSIM. There was no word of caution or alert suggesting that you might want to reconsider before proceeding because this might not work and your SIM card might be locked out for 8–9 hours. When you are instructed to enter an IMEI, there is another absence of caution. There is no specification for those whose devices are associated with two IMEI numbers, and there is no notice that this can lead to problems in the first place.

Having said that, we don’t advise switching your physical SIM to an eSIM just yet unless you are registering for a new plan with a carrier and acquiring an eSIM to start with. There is a chance that everything will go as planned, but there is also a chance that you’ll have extended service outages. A simple online search reveals that I’m not the only person having trouble with Visible’s eSIM conversions. Online, there are plenty of users who are unable to complete the process on their Android and iOS smartphones due to technical issues.

Before users can confidently convert a SIM and experience zero network loss, there are certain obvious backend concerns that need to be resolved. Even though I eventually had a functioning eSIM, it took three different help agents and several hours without any cellular connectivity. Avoid switching your physical SIM card to a digital eSIM if at all possible.

In response to our experience, Visible stated that it is quite uncommon to convert a physical SIM to an eSIM and that this case will be used to enhance support procedures going forward.

Nearly 30% of our current activations at Visible are carried out using an easy-to-use eSIM. Although switching an existing customer from a physical SIM to an eSIM is very uncommon, we do support it and have the same high standards for the experience. Unfortunately, there was a problem with the conversion process in this instance, which prevented our order flow monitoring and Care team from performing as intended or expected. We appreciate you sharing this example with us and are using it to refine our procedures moving forward. Our mission is to deliver seamless, straightforward experiences to members at every stage of their lives, and we will never stop working toward that goal.

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