China is notorious when it comes to online censorship and also dictating what can or cannot be accessed on the internet, which is why it did not really come as a surprise to learn that the Apple Watch Series 3’s cellular connectivity feature has been blocked in the country following concerns about its eSIM.
This is according to a report from The Wall Street Journal who has suggested that the eSIM could be one of the reasons why cellular connectivity has been blocked. The report reads, “The benefit of a device carrying an eSIM is that, with software, users can choose a telecom operator and a communications plan. But in China, that new system raises the question of how carriers and regulators can track the device user’s identity.”
It is interesting that China has only chosen now to block it, especially after local telco China Unicom had offered cellular service for the Apple Watch late September, only to cut off access to it saying that it was only offered on a trial basis. Apple has since released a statement confirming that the feature had been suspended.