2017 Republic Wireless Review: Our Experience After 3 Years

Product by:
Lance Cothern
Price:
$15 per month and up

Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
On March 9, 2017
Last modified:March 19, 2017

Summary:

Republic Wireless allows you to shrink your cell phone bill by hundreds a year. We found out the service is about 95% perfect, but no cell service is 100% and Republic Wireless is well worth it for the money you'll save.

Republic Wireless is a cell phone service provider that began offering service in 2011.

They’re changing the way people pay for and use their cell phone service. 

Why are they making such big waves?

Republic Wireless is stealing customers from the big four carriers left and right because they can save people a massive amount of money every month.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t think anyone loves paying crazy high cell phone bills.

Personally, my wife and I both have our cell phones with Republic Wireless.

Included below are our personal experiences with Republic Wireless throughout the almost three years we’ve been subscribers.

Republic Wireless Plans And Their Prices

No matter which Republic Wireless plan you pick, you never have to sign a contract. Right away, that puts Republic Wireless ahead in my mind.

Save hundreds per year on your cell phone bill with Republic Wireless

Republic Wireless offers a variety of plans.

Their cheapest plan is only $15 a month and gives you unlimited cell service for texts and phone calls but no mobile data over cell towers.

Instead, you can use unlimited data over WiFi.

If you’d like to use data, you’ll have to upgrade to one of their packages with data, which start at just $20 per month for 1 GB of data.

Other plans include 2 GB of data for $30 per month, 4 GB of data for $45 per month and 6 GB of data for $60 per month.

If you’re a heavy data user, they have a 10 GB plan for $90 per month.

If you end up needing more data than your plan allows for in a given month, you can simply upgrade to the next higher plan for the rest of the month. 

Then, you can switch back to your old plan before your next billing cycle begins.

Of course, you still have to pay taxes and governmental fees. On our $20 plan, we pay just $3.57 in taxes and fees per month.

So how can Republic Wireless offer these insanely low rates? Keep reading to find out… Already excited to check out the plans for yourself?

GetRepublicWirelessToday

How Can Republic Wireless Offer Such Low Rates?

How can a cell phone provider offer these rock bottom prices, have great service and survive? I’m glad you asked, because switching to their service can save you hundreds of dollars a year.

Republic Wireless uses wireless networks (WiFi) instead of cell networks whenever possible to make phone calls, send text messages and for all data consumption purposes.

By using free WiFi instead of a cell network, Republic Wireless is able to save a ton of money by not paying for cell network access. They pass these savings along to their consumers in the form of lower rates and I have to say, I’m quite impressed with their offerings.

These days, we’re almost always around a source of WiFi. I know we have WiFi at our home, at work and at many of the stores we shop at on a regular basis like the grocery store and Home Depot.

The only time I don’t have access to WiFi is if I’m travelling somewhere unfamiliar or I’m actually on the road.

Be A Part Of Their Thriving Community

Have you ever heard of a community of passionate AT&T or Verizon users that come together to help each other? I didn’t think so. The community at Republic Wireless’s site is quick to help you out if you ever have a question.

You can even learn how to optimize your Republic Wireless experience through the knowledgeable people already in the community. As you learn, you can add to the conversations if you’d like.

How Good Is Republic Wireless’s Service?

Republic Wireless uses the Sprint or T-Mobile network for all of your cell calls, text messages and data that don’t end up going over WiFi depending on which phone you use.

My phone uses the Sprint network, which is actually one of the better networks in terms of 4G LTE coverage in my area. My wife’s phone uses the T-Mobile network. We haven’t had any major problems with either one.

Make sure to check the coverage in your area on the Republic Wireless website. You can see coverage maps and enter your zip code to see what coverage they have in your area.

But what if you don’t have awesome Sprint or T-Mobile coverage everywhere you go? Is it a big problem?

I’m going to say it isn’t a game breaker with how Republic Wireless works. Due to the fact that they route everything over WiFi as a first priority, as long as you have access to WiFi you should be fine.

Over the past year, we’ve encountered just a few places where we didn’t have phone or data service through Republic Wireless. However, I can remember there were dead spots when I used to have AT&T, too.

You’ll run across these issues with any cell phone provider, but Republic Wireless’s calling and texting over WiFi offers another option for when you’re in a dead zone.  As soon as we connected to the store’s WiFi network, we were able make the call we needed.

When you consider how much cheaper Republic Wireless is than AT&T, Verizon or Sprint, I’m willing to accept an occasional area of spotty service for the hundreds of dollars I’ll save each year.

You Can Switch From WiFi To Cell Service Manually During A Call

If for whatever reason your WiFi call isn’t working smoothly (which we haven’t had any major problems with) there is a setting you can turn on that will allow you to switch a call manually from WiFi to cell service or from cell service to WiFi.

It’s called handover and we’ve rarely had to use it. All you have to do is tap the button.

Republic Wireless’s software is very good at picking a stable network for your phone calls, so we’ve rarely had to switch mid call. However, it’s a nice feature to have.

You might end up with a dropped call if the handover doesn’t go smoothly, but I’d say this is a rare occurrence based on our experience. We could count the amount of dropped calls we’ve had in the past year on one hand with a couple fingers to spare.

What’s The Catch?

Republic Wireless isn’t going to be able to offer the same exact service on all levels of their business that AT&T and Verizon can because they aren’t a behemoth company yet, even though they currently have hundreds of thousands of subscribers.

There isn’t a phone number you can call for customer service, which is a bit annoying. However, they do have a well thought out ticket based online support. You usually get a response pretty fast, but sometimes you may have to wait a bit if they’re super busy.

The only other major downside is you can’t use any phone on Republic Wireless. That said, they do have an awesome selection of Android based phones to choose from.

They have the latest Samsung Galaxy phones, a wide range of Motorola phones and a cheap Huawei phone if you don’t care which phone you use. Check out their full lineup of phones here.

Don’t Worry! You Can Bring Your Phone Number With You!

The biggest worry my wife had about switching to Republic Wireless was keeping her phone number. Luckliy, in almost every case you can port (or take) your old cell phone number to Republic Wireless.

The setup is pretty simple and they have step by step instructions for you to follow. Make sure to check and see if your number can be ported over before you make a purchase with their online tool.

GetRepublicWirelessToday

14 Day Money Back Guarantee

If you’re on the fence about trying Republic Wireless, the 14 day money back guarantee should ease your mind. If you don’t like it, simply return it and get all of your money back, except for your initial shipping. Just make sure to follow the rules.

In order to get the money back guarantee, you must contact Republic Wireless within 14 days of delivery of your phone. You must be able to return the phone in an undamaged condition AND with all of the original packaging. Don’t throw anything away!

You can only return accessories if they are unopened and undamaged. So, don’t open any accessories if you’re not sure if you’re going to keep the phone yet.

All you have to do is wait for your free return shipping label and ship your phone back and they’ll process your request. It’s a pretty simple process! Make sure to check out the Republic Wireless website for full details.

Our Final Verdict On Republic Wireless

Republic Wireless is a great way to save a ton of money on your cell phone service. Even after you buy the phones up front, you’ll save hundreds of dollars a year over a traditional cell phone plan.

The WiFi calling technology seems to be working pretty well for us and it will only get better going forward from here.

Yes, you might drop a call once in a blue moon or you might hit a spot that doesn’t have cell coverage, but the same exact things happen on the big networks like AT&T or Verizon, too.

Overall, I’m willing to take any of the minor inconveniences I’ve dealt with so far in exchange for savings hundreds of dollars a year. In fact, my wife and I have both made the switch to Republic Wireless and we’re saving a ton of money.

That said, Republic Wireless isn’t perfect for everyone.

If you’re not a huge technology nerd that has to have the latest Apple phone every 6 months and your area has decent Sprint, T-Mobile and/or WiFi coverage then I suggest you give them a shot. 

You don’t have anything to lose with their 14 day money back guarantee. Odds are you’ll like the service and save hundreds of dollars a year. How cool is that?!

GetRepublicWirelessToday

Ready to try out Republic Wireless and want to support this site? Sign up through this affiliate link for Republic Wireless! I’m very thankful for everyone who helps support Money Manifesto!

Do you have Republic Wireless? If not, are you considering switching? Have any questions that we can test out for you? Let me know in the comments or contact me!

I worked very hard on this review to help you decide if Republic Wireless is a good fit for you or not to help you save money. All views are 100% my own and 100% honest.

There are affiliate links within this post that will pay me a small commission if you sign up through them. It is the same price for you either way, but I thank you in advance if you sign up through one of my links.

Republic Wireless allows you to shrink your cell phone bill by hundreds a year. We found out the service is about 95% perfect, but no cell service is 100% and Republic Wireless is well worth it for the money you'll save.

Like What You See?

Join the other readers who have signed up for our email newsletter! No spam, just periodic updates to help improve your finances!

About Lance Cothern

Lance Cothern, a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia, is the founder of Money Manifesto. You can read more about him here or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Pinterest.

Comments

  1. I’ve heard awesome things about Republic Wireless, and we will definitely use them if we ever get smartphones, but for now we’re using talk/text phone at a cost of about $8 a month.

  2. Switching from WiFi to cell service manually during a call is really a good one! Thanks a lot for this great review!

  3. Thanks for the extensive review. This will help me when I will be switching from my present carrier soon.

  4. Michael Frazier says:

    We have been using the Moto G Ext (2nd gen) with another sell carrier for about two months now, switching it to wifi wherever available. It costs us $33.25 for 250 shared phone minutes, for a lot of text messages, and for 500 MB of data excluding the wifi. The Moto G Ext (2 gen) phones are an excellent value. In addition to the $33.25, we pay $2.00 per month for detailed billing, and about $5 of taxes and “fees”.

    • Michael Frazier says:

      This refers to two phones, hers and his, which are sharing the minutes and the data.

    • Thanks for the info. Unfortunately, Republic Wireless only currently has the Moto G 1st gen phone, but I’m glad you like the phone. I think you could probably save even more money once Republic switches to paying you back for data you don’t use, but right now I think your plan is the one best for you if both phones are under $40 per month combined and you both end up using some data each month.

  5. Republic Wireless sounds like a great alternative to the big carriers. I really like the low cost and the fact they now refund you for data you didn’t use. I’d love to see my $65/mo cell phone bill get cut nearly in half but the thought of giving up my iPhone makes me uneasy. This post has a lot of helpful details and may end up getting me to convert anyways. Tough decision!

    • It definitely is a tough decision. If you absolutely must keep your iPhone, there are still other providers out there that are cheaper than the big cell carriers.

      • Karrhik says:

        Hi

        1 who are the other providers who could give unlimited voice and 1GB of data

        2. If I buy Motto G through Republic wireless, can I switch to different GSM provider later if I want to with this phone..

        • Great questions. I’m not sure off the top of my head what other providers offer what you’re asking for, but a quick Google search should reveal that. The Republic Wireless phones only work on Republic Wireless though. Sorry if that is bad news!

  6. I’ve been with Republic since last year and my wife and I both use the 1st Gen Moto X. We love the phone, I think it’s on par with some of the best phones out there.

    We just switched to the new data plans, which will mean going from two Moto X phones – one of them with 3G data for $35/month, to two Moto X phones both with 4G data for $27.50 (or so) a month. Not too shabby! We love it!

    • Glad to hear you’re enjoying the savings already, Peter. We haven’t decided yet if we’ll switch to the new plan or not for my wife. I’m sure we’ll save money, but she wants to double check for a couple months first.

  7. I have the Moto G and so far only minor complaints about it. It doesn’t seem to switch between Wifi and cellular as smoothly as I would like but it works really well otherwise. I kind of wish I spent the extra $ and got the Moto X because everyone seems to love it but the G is fine too.

    • We’ve had a problem with the switch over once or twice, but for $10 bucks a month for unlimited talk and text, I can’t really complain that much. The new Moto X (2nd gen) is pretty awesome, but the G or even the new E (2nd gen) works just fine.

  8. Mimi Slamet says:

    About ready to order the Republic Wireless phone, my choice is probably between Moto E and Moto G. Can we find a better price on the phones than offered on Republic’s website?

    • Mimi

      The prices are they best you can get as far as I know. You have to buy the phone through Republic Wireless so you get a phone with their software and they very rarely offer discount codes. If you like using apps and storing a lot of pictures and video I would go with the Moto G 16 GB model. If you just use your phone as a phone and use the internet occasionally I would go with the Moto E. Remember to keep all of the packaging so you can use the 30 day guarantee in case you don’t like the service or want to switch to a different phone. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  9. So it’s not compatible with iPhone 6? I own my device. Currently on pageplus 43/month 1GB

    • Shonda you are correct. As of right now, you can only use phones sold by Republic Wireless (the Moto phones) on their network. Who knows if that will change in the future or not. However, if you want to keep your iPhone 6, there are many other discount carriers you can consider!

  10. Phillip says:

    What about if you travel and use the map on your phone a lot for directions?

    • If it uses data it will affect your monthly bill. However, I have heard there are directions you can predownload now. You can check to see how much data the map app you use normally uses by doing a Google search.

Share Your Thoughts

*