I'm just a local business and finance nerd looking to help people get educated about small business, marketing, and personal finance! I write about anything and everything that I can tie into those themes. I'm also Central Florida's only Kilted Realtor, so I write about Real Estate too! Check out my About Me page to see the origins of Cash Flow Celt.
Conquering Your Financial Empire
I hate the high price of cell phone bills. I’m not someone who needs two or three gigabytes of data each month, nor do I spend a great deal of time using my phone in a place that wouldn’t have WiFi (like driving). Thus, the mere thought of spending $60 or more for two phone lines for talk, text, and 1GB of data scared the daylights out of me. I had to find a more economical solution.
That’s when I learned about Republic Wireless. Republic Wireless is primarily a WiFi based carrier. That means, when you have WiFi coverage your phone functions as a VoIP system which provides savings to Republic and is the main focal point of how they offer cheaper plans. How cheap? I pay $25.82 a month for two phone lines. That frees up AT LEAST $30 a month that I can now spend on myself, rather than some corporate telecommunications company. Depending on who your current provider is, you may see even more savings – my guess is you will. Keep reading, I’m about to break down Republic Wireless’ coverage and operation to help you make a more informed decision.
Republic offers 5 basic plans to fit your needs: no data, half a gig of data, 1GB, 2GB and 3GB. That’s all well and good, but here’s what you need to know. Republic charges $10 for unlimited talk and text and then $15 per gigabyte of data. So you want a 2GB plan? It will be $40 per month. You want two phones with 2GB of data, that will be $80. Period. No hidden charges or fees, just $15 per gig and $10 for talk and text, plus applicable taxes. To compare that to a comparable two phone, 2GB plan at AT&T you’ll be shelling out $100 a month, not including taxes or fees. I don’t know about you, but I like more money in MY pocket.
Speaking of money, Republic doesn’t believe in charging you for items you don’t use. If you have a 2GB data allowance per month, but you only use 1GB, they’ll credit $15 to next month’s bill. Republic reports that, on average, users get $13.83 in refunds per month. Now that’s customer loyalty.
In a dream world for Republic Wireless, everyone would use WiFi based calling; however, that means always being connected to an internet hotspot which isn’t pragmatic. To fix this, Republic has created proprietary software they call Adaptive Coverage. Adapted Coverage constantly checks for the best way to connect, that is WiFi, 3G or 4G, or cellular coverage via Sprint. As you move around while talking, the phone is constantly updating its preferred coverage to ensure no dropped calls. If the phone feels like you’re losing audio quality or cell coverage, it begins to “patch” the line.
Patching is the heart Republics cell coverage. For instance, let’s say you’re working and are connected to your companies WiFi. You begin your phone call with great WiFi connection, but need to go down to the lobby to meet someone. As you approach the elevator, your WiFi begins to fade, but your phone has already started boosting your audio quality by “patching” the WiFi with 3G or 4G data. So even though you’re been on WiFi completely (and its quality went up and down), you never got any static noise, or dropped calls, or volume issues because of Republic’s technology. As a Republic customer, I can say I’ve maybe dropped one call in a year and a half of use. Fair warning though, Republic used to have issues with the WiFi to cellular hand-off that resulted in dropped calls; however, to my knowledge they fixed those issues in 2014.
Republic is an Android only carrier, so no iPhones here. To date, Republic has selectively added phones to their plan. There are large licensing and usage issues that are inherent with Republic because they have to modify the phone; thus, they only had licensing with Motorolla. That’s now changed. As of July 28th, 2016 Republic will begin selling Samsung phones, like the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. They will also sell the Nexus 6P by Huawei. Like many of the other retailers, Republic also allows financing of their more expensive phone models.
The downside of the phones is that, because they need to be modified, they don’t allow any phone bought off the street. You MUST buy either from Republic Wireless or buy a phone that has previously been modified by Republic Wireless. Remember, their business model is a unique and innovative software that changes how the phone works. Without that Adaptive Coverage software, you lose the essence of what makes Republic work. Fear not though, Swappa and Ebay both have “Republic Only” sections where you can buy and sell phones. If find this a small price to pay for phone bills that are half that of other major providers.
Republic Wireless offers cheap and reliable phone plans for the financially conscious consumer. If you value reliability and usability, over having the newest phone every year, then this could be the carrier you need. Need another reason to switch? How does no contracts and flexible plan adjustments sound? I currently just have unlimited talk, text and WiFi at $10 a month; however, if I was going on vacation and need some data for GPS and mapping (so I don’t get lost), I just go into my Republic app and buy a gig of data. When I come home, go back into the app and tell it I don’t want any more data, and I’ll get a pro-rated amount back for the data I don’t use.
Interested in switching to one of the fastest growing carriers? Be sure to use this link here to go straight to Republic’s page. I’m glad I made the switch and my wallet is too. Why spend more for the same coverage? Switch today!
**This post contains affiliate links, please see disclaimer
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