Republic Wireless is a relatively new entrant to the mobile phone industry which operates as an MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) using the Sprint Network. The company has set out to distinguish itself as a provider of low cost budget cell phone plans that are flexible with no contracts required.
Republic Wireless is able to offer much cheaper prices than most other mobile phone operators due to their unique “handover” technology. This handover technology which is encoded into their phones allows for call, texts, and data usage to be used primarily over any available Wi-fi networks and uses the Sprint network when wi-fi is not available. Since most people tend to use their cell phones in either their home or office where wi-fi is often available, the company saves money on cell network traffic which they pass the savings on to their customers.
Cell Phone Plans
The plans offered range from $5 to $40 and include the option to switch between the different plans at a pro-rated price up to two times a month. This flexible plan switching option can be done right from an in-phone app which makes the process quick and easy.
The types of plans are shown below:
While the $5 wi-fi plan is certainly cheap and interesting, the most popular plan seems to be the $25 unlimited everything plan. Compared to other cell phone carriers, Republic takes the cake when it comes to their unlimited talk, text, and data option which appears to be the cheapest unlimited cell phone plan on the market right now.
My Personal Review/Experience
After being screwed over by AT&T for years on end, paying upwards of $75 per month for 350 minutes/200 texts/unlimited data (grandfathered in), it made a lot of sense for me to save myself an extra $50 bucks a month for a plan that was even better than I already had.
The only concerns I had was switching from an iPhone to an Android based phone (Moto G) and if the call/data coverage would be as good on the Sprint Network than the AT&T network. So I took the plunge in April 2014 and made the switch to Republic. Below is my experience so far, after about four months of using the service, broken down by a simple Pros and Cons list.
If you are a frugal minded person, any of the Republic plans is a no brainer in my opinion, especially for an Unlimited everything plan. I ended signing up for the $25 plan and love that I have an extra $50 to re-allocate in my budget each month.
The Moto G that I bought to use with this service works great and have yet to have any problems with the phone or the Android OS system on it.
Not only are the plans cheap, but they also don’t lock you into any type of contract AND they still offer their phones at a discount compared to other carriers. For example, I bought the Moto G for $149 from Republic which is usually $200 to buy retail from the big carriers like Verizon and AT&T.
The customer service is top notch, their support team are right on top of any questions or concerns you might have, and even provide lots of online material to help you in your switch from both services and phones.
The phone options are limited to the Moto X and Moto G at the time of this writing and they have to be purchased from Republic since the handover tech needs to be installed on the phone before using it. Thus there is no option to bring your old phone with you. However, both the Moto X and Moto G are excellent phones offered at discounted prices, with a third cheaper phone to come by the end of 2014.
Ironically the one place that I get bad Sprint network reception is in my living room where I use the phone the most… but you know what, that doesn’t matter at all because the phone operates over my home wi-fi instead so it all works out. Admittedly, the Sprint network can be a bit more spotty depending on where you are in the country compared to AT&T or Verizon but I think the cheap price and ability to call over a wi-fi network is a nice compromise.
Republic Wireless is still a fairly new company and they’ve had some bugs to work out of their handover technology, but it does continues to improve. For example, I believe that there is still some issues with MMS messages not being able to be received from certain carriers due to interoperability issues.
Overall I am very happy with this service right now, it does the job and the Moto G I’m using is fantastic, so I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon.
More Republic Wireless Reviews
Below is a list of some more Republic Wireless reviews from other bloggers and technology journalists who I trust to give fair objective reviews of the service:
Video Reviews of Republic Wireless
If you have used the Republic Wireless service, please let us know what your experiences have been in the comments section below.