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Republic Wireless has announced it has begun to roll out an update to its service dubbed "Project Salsa" which allows support for cellular to Wi-Fi voice call handoffs. The update is expected to reach customers over the course of the next week. Customers who use the prepaid wireless service via a Motorola Defy or second generation Motorola X device unfortunately will not see the update.
In June the company began work on the project by allowing 1800 beta testers. Data obtained from the testers showed that a 3% increase in the amount of calls handled over Wi-Fi was achieved. While the percentage increase was numerically small, any increase is beneficial to the consumer, as the more calls that can be handled over Wi-Fi, the cheaper the service can become for the consumer since calls over Wi-Fi networks are cheaper to place as opposed to calls over cellular networks.
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Republic Wireless has always operated with the premise that calls and text whenever possible get routed over Wi-Fi first. However, when Wi-Fi is unavailable or it becomes out of range during a call, calls seamlessly get rerouted over the cellular network. The new update as previously mentioned, allows calls to be rerouted in reverse seamlessly transitioning from the cellular network to Wi-Fi when a cellular network becomes out of range, or when a Wi-Fi network becomes available.
Republic Wireless currently operates as a Sprint MVNO, and the prepaid wireless provider says it plans to add a second MVNO partner by the end of the year. In all likelihood that MVNO partner will be T-Mobile which will allow for the company to keep its current pricing structure in tact. It is likely that Republic Wireless will operate much like how Google's Project Fi currently operates, allowing for seamless transition between whichever network albeit cellular or Wi-Fi has the strongest signal for calls and texts.
About Republic Wireless
Republic Wireless offers service with plans that start at $5 a month for unlimited talk and text over Wi-Fi only, and go as high as $55/month for talk, text and cellular data. Republic Wireless refunds customers for any unused data they may have at the end of their billing cycle.