*This post may contain affiliate links, please see my disclosure
Disclaimer: I did not receive any payment for this post, but I do receive a small commission if you sign up through my links. As always, I appreciate any support, and hope you enjoy the savings! I also think Republic Wireless is onto something revolutionary here, and I wanted to share it with you!
If you pay more than $20 for your smart phone, raise your hand. Ok….keep your hand in the air until you have finished reading this post, because trust me, you will be able to put your hand down the next time that question is asked once you learn more about Republic Wireless.
I was approached by Republic Wireless to test out their wireless service. I started to do a little reading on them, and found out they have a simple, yet brilliant strategy. Bring the astronomical cost of wireless service down to a small fraction by utilizing something that is surrounding all of us at all times. No, there are not air-powered cell phones, but almost just as cool. Republic wireless is built on using a smart phone app to make UNLIMITED calls, data and text using WiFi. And that’s it. Seriously simple. Seriously smart!
I was sent a phone to use, and a few months of service to get a feel for how Republic Wireless worked, and to “kick the tires” on using WiFi for my everyday smart phone usage. Honestly, I didn’t have much use for the phone because our current family plan is super cheap and unique, but I was pretty excited to see how Republic would perform, because this is revolutionary in the wireless industry.
I pulled out the phone, powered it up, and downloaded the app required to make the awesome WiFi calls. I connected to our home WiFi and called Michelle for a test run. Flawless. We chatted a bit, then realized it was weird standing 5 feet from each other and having a conversation. I hung up and realized that something awesome had just happened that could change the way cell phones are used forever. No more paying some company who built a ginormous tower hundreds each month for a “family” plan. No more crazy data rates. Just simple, effective technology to lower phone bills and save people a ton of money.
Republic Wireless real sell is not their phones (though, they are talking about coming out with some newer models, which is just icing on the cake). No, their sell is the fact that you can get unlimited data, text and minutes for $19 a month with no contract. No seriously, unlimited service for $19 flipping dollars, and no strings attached. The only catch, you have to buy your phone, which currently retails for $199. There’s a second option to purchase the phone for $79, and the bill is then $29 per month, but if you want to save long term, I would opt for option 1. Here’s a quick breakdown:
Option 1: $199 up front, $20 a month (rounding up because math is hard).
- Year 1 = $440 total cost
- Year 2 = $240
- Year 3 + = $240
Option 2: $79 up front, $30 a month.
- Year 1 = $440 total cost
- Year 2 = $360
- Year 3 + = $360
Option 3: $200 iDevice, $120 a month (for unlimited service)
- Year 1 = $1,640 total cost
- Year 2 = $1,440
- Year 3 + = $1,440 (barf)
And feel free to use this fancy pants calculator to see how your cell plan stacks up.
I don’t want to rehash what others have already done much better than I, so I’ll leave you with a few links to go over some of the details and frequently asked question about Republic Wireless. Also, you can just visit their site to sign up for service, learn about their company, and be generally impressed at how simple and awesome this idea is. But here are some quick points about the service you may want to know:
- They don’t currently support sending photos and videos over traditional text messaging (MMS). But you can email, snapchat, facebook, etc.
- If you’re not on WiFi, they use Sprint’s cell towers for coverage. If you’re on a WiFi call and leave the network, you will need to redial the call.
- You can transfer your phone number to their service, which is awesome!
- There are more phone options to come in the future, don’t you worry your pretty little head!
- Republic Wireless FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page
Republic Wireless is offering phone service at a disruptive price point. WiFi is everywhere and most everyone, especially for those of you in college, are surrounded by it ALL THE TIME. So why keep paying hundreds per month for the privilege of using a phone that performs the same functions at the Republic Wireless phone offering? I mean, there’s a reason those companies have contracts and discounted phone, because they have to tie people down so they don’t get any ideas, like SAVING OVER $1,000 PER YEAR on their cell phone plans. I mean, that would be bad for business.
I totally support what Republic has going on here, and am behind their mission 100% to stop the ridiculous cell phone price gauging and get people their service for a reasonable rate. And that rate happens to save America 80% on their monthly bill. For those of you with your hand still up…..I suggest clicking the link below and start saving some serious cash today.
Comments: How much are you paying for your cell phone plan? Do you see any reason to keep it now with this awesome deal they have going on? Anyone here use Republic Wireless?
36 thoughts on “Cut Your Phone Bill By 80% With Republic Wireless”
This really is so intriguing. We still have a ways to go on our ATT contract, though the savings could still be worth the cancelation fee.
I’m not really wanting to make any changes at this point, though.
We used Magic Jack for a year (home line that worked over our WiFi) and it was pretty buggy. Calls would drop frequently. We sometimes will use a phone app like Tango to make calls to others with that app, but that isn’t perfect, either.
I’m glad you have had such good results with it!
The best part is how simple it is. Buy the phone, then it’s one price. No contract, no hassles.
In waiting for ting to get the iPhone. I don’t have wifi at work, donut would be really unpleasant to have limited service for suh a huge chunk of my day b
I’ve been with RW for about 9 months now (signed up for their beta well over a year ago) and reviewed them after I’d been with them for several months (in my link). I’m still very happy with the plan given that I didn’t have a smartphone before getting this one, but I know others have greater “needs” for the hardware. I also think they have a great concept!
Nine months? Nice. That’s a great case study, and it sounds like it’s held up well. For $20 a month, I mean, c’mon, why WOULDN’T you give this a shot?
My contract will expire next Spring, I think I will look into this.
Definitely worth the research. For the right person, this is going to save THOUSANDS over the years. There’s serious savings to be had here.
Republic Wireless is a pretty good deal. My best friend uses them and is happy with the service. I have the $25 Virgin Mobile deal so the savings isn’t enough to make me want to switch.
Good to hear another testimony, thanks!
I love the idea of this. I’m currently paying $130 a month (one iphone and 3 regular phones-no data) on a family plan. I wonder if this company will eventually allow or support other phones to be used.
Yes, new phones coming very soon (like, within a few months). 🙂
I just signed up for Republic Wireless a little less than a month ago. I will say that for the most part it’s great, and for the price it’s pretty amazing. I do make calls off wireless, like when I’m in the car, and in those cases the Sprint coverage is just okay. But for my needs now it’s totally doable, and the wi-fi usage is great. You also have to be ok with an older smartphone without all of the newest capabilities. I am, and it’s still a perfectly functional smartphone, but other people may not and I could see it being a hassle if you really use your phone for business purposes.
Cool man. Keep me updated, I like hearing how it works out in the longer term. I mean, if I can help people save thousands per year, then I’m ALL for it!
I’ve had Republic Wireless and it works great for my needs (for the most part). You really can’t beat the price!
Right?! No one is competing at this price point for unlimited services.
Sounds interesting but it sounds like if you do rely on the network for phone and especially data, you could be taking a step back. I don’t think it would work for us as we are gone for a few weeks per year and we rely on the cell network for any sort of coverage (no wiFi in Michigan state campgrounds just yet), so that would leave us pretty much in the dark.
Good write-up. Be interesting to see if others follow this model.
I hear the coverage isn’t too bad. It’s on the Sprint cell towers when you’re off WiFi, so you should be good to go. If you check out Mr. Money Mustache’s review, he even says there’s international coverage in Canada.
Many people are quite happy with the cellular coverage.
Hey Jacob, While I agree that a VoIP-centric cellphone may be the wave of the future, it just isn’t ready for prime time.
I’ve been a member of Republic Wireless since they started in Nov. 2011. My recommendation to anyone considering this phone service – RUN!
If you are looking for a phone that ‘just works’, RW is not that company. There is SO MUCH tinkering and fiddling required with the phone to make it behave properly, and when that doesn’t work you’ll get all kinds of ridiculous suggestions at their crowd-sourced forums to go out and buy new routers and gateway hardware just to get the phone to work ADEQUATELY. Kind of defeats the purpose of saving money when you have to go out an buy a new $80 router – and all just for the phone.
I used to be enthusiastic about Republic Wireless, but only at the beginning when the service was brand new, but the giddiness of only spending $19/month wore off after 3 months when it became apparent that what RW was selling and marketing was not the reality of the actual product. In other words, quite a bit of false advertising and “pie in the sky” taglines to get you to come on board.
With them raising the price to $29 to get the cheaper phone, there are MANY more options out there now for that price that are WAY better. With most of them allowing you to bring your own phone of choice.
Definitely do A LOT of research on RW if you are even contemplating trying them out. Consumer Reports and the WSJ video by Walt Mossberg gave it a thumbs down, and PCMag and LaptopMag gave the phone an “F”.
If you have RW and are absolutely frustrated with their ‘we like to hide behind our website’ approach to customer service, leave behind their forums, community, emails and support tickets merry-go-round and just call them for customer service. Yelp has listed customer service phone numbers to reach real, live people to get support.
Sweet! Thanks for the feedback. The more insight we can get from real users, the better. I’ve seen many reviews from both sides of the fence when searching around, and obviously my limited experience isn’t going to be proof enough for everyone. I think the savings can help overlook at lot of the hassles involved in using a beta product, but for some it’s not worth it.
Thanks for stopping by!
Good to know as I had never of this outfit. When my contract expires next March I will take a closer look for sure. Do they give you choices in the phone?
Unfortunately, no. Currently, you have NO choice in the phone. It is a Motorola Defy XT running Gingerbread OS 2.3 (with no upgrade option on the OS). Also, they do not allow BYOD. You MUST buy a new phone from them as they will not permit you to buy it used and reactivate it on their network. Overall, it is an extremely restrictive service when it comes to customer convenience.
What Adidastio said. They’ve got one simple phone right now, with new models coming up soon. If hardware is the most important thing to your cell phone experience, you will be forking out $1,000 more per year for similar service. Keeping that in mind, if you want to keep it simple, RW could be a great option for you. Obviously, do you research, and only get in if you’re comfortable with the options presented. I mean, looking at the numbers, it’s hard to ignore that kind of savings 🙂
$1000 a year for similar service? Not at all. There are VERY competitive companies nipping at each other’s heels right now – StraightTalk, Ting, AirVoice, Plantinumtel, Page Plus, T-Mobile $30, Solavei and others I can’t remember. All of these companies will get your bill well-below the $100/month mark AND…you get to bring your own phone – if that is important to you. And the beauty of all of these MVNO’s is that they use the ‘Big Boys’ towers. And none of this “required” default-VoIP stuff. There are very large discussion threads at the Howard Forums, where they talk about nothing but everything cellular. The “general prepaid” category is where people are telling each other where they get the deals on these MVNO’s. Best of luck.
Great to know about the other options, thanks for sharing those. I still like the idea of WiFi, because it’ll at least make the contract plans more competitive at some point, if people STOP using the towers for most of their calls. But I agree, digging in a bit before jumping into any cell plan is key, and there are savings to be had outside of Republic as well. I just hope people start jumping off the contract bandwagon and realize how much they are actually spending each year. For unlimited service on those, you’re at $100 a month ($120 at AT&T where I got the original calculation).
Interesting information and sounds like a great deal on cell phone service that we all so need. On an average one pays at least $50 or more for the phone service, so this sounds like a great offer. But I would take a closer look and check out reviews to make sure the service works as good as with other major companies.
You’ll find mixed reviews, even at the major companies. For most everyday use in the office or at home, this is a great option. And they seem to have a good coverage map. I made some basic calls outside the house, no issues.
This is exactly the kind of pressure that needs to be applied to legacy telephone service providers.
I cringe every month when I make my payment to Big Telephone Corp.
Competition should have brought cell phone bills down, but the opposite has been true.
That’s what I’m saying. That’s why I’m hoping this takes off, to bring REAL competition, not price fixing to the game.
Our family plan with Verizon ends later this year. I think with my kids in college this is a great way to cut some costs.
And they may even have new phone offers by then! 🙂
Wow, that’s a low cost cell phone. Something like this has needed to happen for a long time. I personally use Metro PCS. I purchased it in Florida and have had the line for years. I was so worried when I moved to Oregon because I wasn’t sure they provided service here. But…they do. I pay $50 a month so, Republic Wireless is definitely pretty interesting. I’ll look further into it! Thanks! I see you’re pretty active in the pf blogosphere, I’d love to see you around in the comments at CNA!
That’s an absolutely great deal! I wish we had that in Canada!
Now this is one instance in which I might actually consider getting a smartphone. Thanks for the great review, Jacob!
Thanks for taking the time to write a review of Republic Wireless. I enjoy having my iphone but I need to cut costs and there are better options out there other than paying a kings ransom every month to AT&T for the use of two iphones. We have been with them for a little while and have the grandfathered unlimited data but at the end of the day it just isn’t worth it.