NXP and Qualcomm Partner Up To Integrate eSIM Into Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear-Based Wearables

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. started a new initiative meant to bring experts together to develop ...

Image credit: NXP

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. started a new initiative meant to bring experts together to develop ideas, further standards, and expand the ecosystem, called the Wearables Ecosystem Accelerator Program.  NXP is a strong supporter of the initiative that involves more than 60 ecosystem players, reports Cyril Caillaud and Love Khanna in the NXP blog.

In addition to this NXP and Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. are expanding their collaboration to now also integrate NXP’s eSIM solutions to wearable devices based on Qualcomm’s widely adopted Snapdragon Wear platform. To lower the integration effort for developers, NXP’s SN110U comes pre-integrated into the latest Snapdragon Wear 4100+ platform. Offering fast transaction speed in an ultra-small format that consumes very little power, the SN110U is ideally suited for use in wearable devices.

Read more: Qualcomm Adds aptX Lossless, New Bluetooth Lossless Audio Technology To Its Audio Portfolio

Developers working on Snapdragon Wear 4100+ benefit from the unique monolithic solution featuring an eSIM, next to NFC for transit, access control, and contactless payments, and an embedded secure element (eSE) to secure services and data – all embodied in the SN110U, according to the NXP blog post.

“The wearables industry is buzzing with rapid growth and unprecedented innovation in the industry,” said Pankaj Kedia, senior director and global head, Smart Wearables Segment, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The Wearables Ecosystem Accelerator Program, which we announced earlier this summer, provides a vehicle for leading players in the wearables space to invent, innovate and invest in next-generation products and accelerate the ecosystem. We welcome NXP to the program and look forward to advancing eSIM-based connected use cases with mobile payments in collaboration with NXP.”

Benefits of these new cellular connectivity capabilities include:

Easier logistics – Eliminating SIM cards simplifies the supply chain for wearables, since there’s one less item to manufacture, transport, warehouse and manage. It saves resources and lowers overall costs.

More streamlined design – Wearables tend to be small, lightweight devices that have a small footprint. An eSIM uses less space than a traditional SIM, so the design is easier to optimize for tight spaces and battery operation, and the bill of materials is lower, too. Also, since there’s no need for a SIM slot, the design can be sleeker and more resistant to water, dust, and other destructive elements.

Better user experiences – The eSIM can receive updated profiles at any time and can store multiple profiles at once, so consumers can add backup profiles or travel internationally without having to change the SIM cards in their wearables.

Faster scaling and easier customization – Wearables can scale more easily across geographic regions that use different service providers, and late-stage customization becomes easier since the eSIM can accept profiles at any point in its life cycle, before or after the sale.

Dynamic security – Updates can be sent to the wearable over the air as needed, even after it’s in the field. Developers can address new threats as they arise and revise algorithms to reflect new approaches as they become available.

Read more: Quectel, Qualcomm and Microsoft Partnership to Speed Up IoT Solutions

The combination of pre-integration and collaboration among the key ecosystem players promises to unlock a new generation of wearable devices.

Sam Draper
October 18, 2021

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