Update: This review has not been updated in some time. The information in this review may be outdated, so check the Republic Wireless website for more details on what has changed since this review. You can also check out our more up-to-date reviews of secondary wireless companies such as our Mint Mobile review and Total Wireless review using the links provided.
Republic Wireless is known for offering plans that help you save money when compared to the major wireless providers. They do this by having cheaper cell phones and Wi-Fi calling options to getting cash back each month for the data you don’t use. In this review, we take a look at their wireless plans and how the monthly prices break down for each option.
Republic Wireless Plans
All of Republic Wireless are no-contract plans and can be canceled at any point. The plans are similar to how you choose plans from other carriers as they have a basic plan where you buy data as needed up to plans where you can prepay for 5 gigabytes which may end up cheaper than buying it as needed. You can purchase more data at any time through their app. We’ve detailed the latest options and prices below. All plans come with unlimited talk and text.
- XS Plan: 0.5 GB’s for $17.50/month
- S Plan: 1GB for $25/month
- M Plan: 2GB’s for $40/month
- L Plan: 3GB’s for $55/month
- XL Plan: 4GB for $70/month
- XXL Plan: 5GB for $85/month
- Pay As You Go Plan: $10/month + price of data
What Is Hybrid Calling and What Phones Are Available?
As we previously mentioned, Republic Wireless can keep some of their costs down by providing you with unique phones that only work on their service as well as using Hybrid Calling.
You can currently choose from three different phones that are all made by Motorola. This means you can choose between the Moto E, Moto G, and Moto X phones. Each phone goes up in features as well as price depending on exactly what you want and need. These phones are all fairly cheap and have good reviews with pricing ranging from $129 to $399.
Hybrid Calling is the other part of the equation in what makes Republic Wireless unique. Many wireless providers now have WiFi calling, but Republic Wireless tries to incentivize WiFi calling by making it one of the largest parts of their plans and works on making it work flawlessly. Hybrid calling is essentially using your internet to send voice and text instead of relying on data coming through towers from your provider. This will help keep down the cost and should make your signal and clarity much better when making calls from areas with WiFi that may be more rural. The hybrid calling feature is also how you can keep down your data costs each month to receive more money back.
You can get good coverage in most areas of the United States, and of course, the WiFi calling should be good anywhere you have decently fast internet. They have a coverage map on their website which will give you a good sense of how the coverage stacks up in your area along with 3G and 4G layers to get more in-depth. They currently use the Sprint network to power their data and calling plans, so the coverage and speeds will be comparable to Sprint.
Getting Cash-Back Each Month
One of the major selling points of Republic Wireless is that you will receive money back each month on the data you don’t use. This money will then be put towards your next month’s bill or it seems you may be able to just cash out at a certain point. The amount each month is figured out in a pro-rated matter, so depending on your plan you can receive a select amount of data back that you don’t use. According to examples on their website, the average for a 2GB plan is $16 back with the larger 4GB plan having an average refund of $31. These refunds are of course the average and can change depending on how much data you use. This is why if you are someone who does most of their calling and data use at home you can save big by switching over.
Pros and Cons of Republic Wireless
Republic Wireless is trying something different within the mobile space which can bring innovation but can also have some downsides. We’ve broken down some very basic pros and cons to help you better understand what you’re getting when you sign up for one of their plans and buy a phone.
- Can receive a refund for any unused data.
- All plans are no-contract.
- Low data users can get cheaper individuals plan than with most major carriers.
- Hybrid Calling can lead to better quality calls for many users.
- You have to purchase a compatible phone with only a few choices currently available. The phone is then currently not compatible with most other wireless carriers.
- Prices probably aren’t cheap enough to save if you use a lot of data (when compared to major providers)
- Data speeds and coverage can be slow in some rural areas (due to Sprint network).
Our Take On Republic Wireless
We spend hours and hours reviewing wireless plans and phones each month. Republic Wireless is one of the few places that’s actually trying something different in an attempt to enhance the customer experience and hopefully lower your monthly phone costs. There is an option for almost all individual users on the plans with very few customers needing anything more than the 3 GB per month plan with basic data use.
Our take is that if you’re someone who doesn’t consume much data outside of the home (Wi-Fi) and would like to take advantage of getting a lower-priced plan then this may be something to try out as there are no contracts (but you must purchase their phone). If you’re someone who uses a lot of data or likes that have the latest iPhone then I would steer clear of Republic Wireless just for those reasons. Overall Republic Wireless is an innovative wireless brand that provides a real and unique alternative if you’re wanting to go outside of the normal wireless experience.