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Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

eSIM for iPhone XS, XS MAX and XR

I have an AT&T nano-SIM card and another nano-SIM card with Chinese carrier. I learned that the unlocked iphone Xs MAX can have a nano-SIM and an eSIM working together. But the Chinese carrier didn't support eSIM. So I want to transform my AT&T nano-SIM card into eSIM so that my two phone number can both work on the iphone. How can I change my AT&T nano-SIM card to eSIM?

Message 2 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Yes, you have to go to the store, since they have to verify your identity and that you have the authority to manage the account that your phone is on.

Message 171 of 184
Community Support
Accepted by Community Support (Community Support)
Accepted by ATTCustomerCare
‎12-18-2018 9:08 AM

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Hi all,


We are seeing a few questions regarding eSIM and wanted to give you all the information we can on how to transfer your number to an eSIM and the requirements to use another carrier. 


Using AT&T and Another Carrier

In order to use another a SIM from another carrier, your device may need to be unlocked. You can unlock your device via the AT&T Device Unlock Portal. It may take 1-2 weeks for your request to be completed. 


Note: Your device must meet the requirements in order to be unlocked. If your device does not meant them, it cannot be unlocked until they are met. For example, the device must be paid off before it can be unlocked. If your device belongs to another carrier, AT&T cannot unlock it. 


Changing AT&T Number to eSIM

In order to move your number from a physical SIM to an eSIM,  we will need to move things on our end and process a SIM Replacement. Chat with us to get that taken care of. 


How to Get an eSIM

To get an eSIM, you can visit a Corporate Retail location. We do recommend setting up an appointment. If you ordered your device from att.com, you may receive a QR code.


How to Install Your eSIM

  1. Go to Settings, then Cellular.
  2. Select Add a plan, and the Camera app will open.
  3. Point your camera at the QR activation code on your eSIM card until you see a message that says Installing cellular plan.

You're all set!


ChrisZ, AT&T Community Specialist 


AT&T Help

Need help with an account specific question?  Post a new question here on the forums by clicking the "Ask a Question" button.
For additional support, please visit us at our AT&T services hub.

*I am an AT&T employee, and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Tags (1)
Message 172 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

I am trying to get an eSIM from AT&T to no avail getting the round around between Customer Service Sales people and Store Sales people

Message 173 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

I've been using one for a month plus.  The eSIM card cost $6.  Here is a link to sample card:

You have to validate identity in the store so. It can't be done with tech support.  You can, however, get tech support to note your file which will put some downward pressure on the store.


Make sure you go to a company store, not a dealer.  Some dealers look like company stores so double check.  If you've consistently had problems with another store, try another one.

Message 174 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Yes I finally went to a corporate store, I am aware of the difference, that help me however still didn’t do a good job.  The rep didn’t have experience on the eSIM so she was learning as she was doing her job after many attempts of getting it to work, one because it was not connected to wifi for example, so at the end when it worked she took the eSIM QR card back and I left the store, then it hit me...why did she took the QR card?  I paid for it, no receipt and no card.  I went back to the store and they said oh we shredded the card, I told them what if I have to reset my iPhone and I don’t have the eSIM?  They said well it wouldn’t work, NONSENSE!  They made a mistake of shredding it...  AT&T needs to train their personnel on eSIM procedures.  Now I am out of the card, they just gave me a receipt......

Message 175 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Unless you buy the same phone with a slightly cheaper baseprice and with a bigger rebate (right now) from Apple and it is unlocked....dont waste your time buying phones, at least new ones, from AT&T.  They do nothing but benefit themselves and try to burn you contractually.  

Message 176 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

I also successfully transferred my AT&T account to an eSIM for my iPhone XS.  I'm now in Southeast Asia and went to a store of the largest carrier local telecom.  They sold me a Nano SIM and offered to install it.  However, they were unsuccessful.  The error messages seemed to imply that the card was not compatible with the phone.  If someone has successfully installed a physical SIM after transferring AT&T to the eSIM I would appreciate any tips for when I try again in a mobile carrier store.

Message 177 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Make sure your iPhone is universal (unlock) version.
Message 178 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

Greetings from Suva Fiji where my iPhone XS is happily running with an ATT eSIM and a Vodafone SIM in slot one. I would make sure that your physical SIM slot is unlocked.  I got my Phone from the Apple Store and don't have any subsidies on it so that is not my issue.  I am going to warn you that your battery will go down faster in dual SIM mode, particularly where there physical SIM is running in HSPA mode.  I am using an auxiliary battery to cope with this.

Message 179 of 184

Re: eSIM for iPhone Xs MAX

As others have said, this is likely due to your phone being "SIM locked" to AT&T.  If you bought it from an AT&T store, or on one of their Next plans, then it is likely locked to prevent it being used on other networks until the plan commitment has been met.  AT&T used to make you jump through all sorts of hoops to unlock any of their phones, but it appears that the process is a lot easier now and you can even unlock one that's still on an installment plan as long as you've owned it for at least 60 days and your payments are current.  See https://www.att.com/esupport/article.html#!/wireless/KM1008728

Message 180 of 184
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