Republic Wireless Updates Plans With Some Astronomically High Pricing

Republic Wireless
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Republic Wireless has added some new wireless plans and I have a hard time seeing how they'll appeal to anyone but we'll get more into that in a moment.  Republic has also eliminated one of its plans.  The $5 plan that offered unlimited talk and text that only worked on Wi-Fi has been terminated (updated: a few site readers have commented that this plan is still available (at least for now) but it is not an option at checkout, and can only be signed up for with the Republic Wireless app. The plan is also not listed on the Republic Wireless website).  With services like Google Hangouts available where users can place calls and texts over Wi-Fi for free, it's hard to justify paying $5 for something one can get for free and I suspect a majority of people felt the same and weren't signing up for the plan, hence its disappearance. The company has also given names to their preexisting plans as well as their new ones, and they are named based on the amount of data they offer going from XS to 3XL. Republic Wireless's new plans are as follows:

  1. XL - 3GB 4G LTE data $55/month
  2. XXL - 4GB 4G LTE data $70/month
  3. 3XL - 5GB 4G LTE data $85/month

All Republic Wireless plans include unlimited talk and text. With these new plans Republic Wireless appears to be charging premium pricing for coverage that's on Sprints network.  It is important to note however, that Republic Wireless does at least offer you a refund for any unused data you have at the end of a billing cycle.  Even with a refund, its hard to justify any of the pricing listed here.  There are simply too many cheaper options available elsewhere to the consumer.  The plans would be more impressive if they topped out at $45-$55/month to be more in line with what competitors charge for 5GB of LTE data. On top of that, Republic Wireless does not support BYOSD, 1)Bring Your Own Sprint Device and so if you plan to switch service to them you'll have to invest in one of three new phones, the Motorola E, G or X.

Republic Wireless's other preexisting plans are as follows:

Be informed of the latest deals, plans and promotions from Sprint and every one of its MVNO's when you subscribe to the Sprint weekly newsletter. No spam and you can unsubscribe at any time!  

  1. XS - Unlimited Talk and Text $10/month
  2. S - 500 MB 4G LTE Data $17.50/month
  3. M - 1GB 4G LTE Data $25/month
  4. L - 2GB 4G LTE Data $40/month

All plans include unlimited talk and text.

I have to say I am very disappointed in Republic Wireless's new plans, and do not like the direction the company is headed in.  The company used to offer much cheaper plans that were a much better value, but ever since they began offering refundable data, they have gotten more expensive, particularly if you need to use up all of the data your plan includes.  At the lower price points of $25 and below, the company does at least offer something reasonable to those out there that don't require a lot of data.  So what do you all think of these new plans?  Am I missing something with my analysis or do you agree that the new price points are rather absurd?

About Republic Wireless

Republic Wireless offers service on Sprint's network.  The company uses a Wi-Fi first approach for its cell phone plans.  Calls and texts are placed whenever possible over Wi-Fi, and when Wi-Fi is unavailable or a customer moves out of Wi-Fi range, the cell phone seamlessly transitions over to Sprint's cellular network without any interaction from the end user.  The Wi-Fi to cellular hand off ideally occurs without a loss of service or dropped call for the user.

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1.Bring Your Own Sprint Device

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JAGUAR6CY
JAGUAR6CY
4 years ago

It’s odd that everyone goes along with the definition of a “high data user”. In fact many RW users consume 10 Gb of data and more every month, and their bills stay at $14. The reason, others pointed out to me, is that they chose to use WIFI data, not cell data. Many very high data users are still doing just fine at RW. Using big data is not a problem. It’s where they get that data that makes all the difference. Cell data is expensive no matter where you buy it but unlimited WIFI data is free and RW users take advantage of that fact. In that sense the article complains about high data charges but never makes any distinction as to the source. In that way this article is intentionally very misleading.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  JAGUAR6CY

Nice try at a deliberately misleading point. “WiFi data” is data paid for by somebody else. We’re comparing apples-to-apples: cell data to cell data. Like anybody else who talks about the cost of data plans.

Take this nonsense elsewhere.

DavePC
DavePC
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

Actually, he’s pretty accurate, and it’s the very model that provides cost savings with Republic. I use around 1 gb of cell data per month. I use a whole lot more Wi-Fi data. But I’m buying home internet anyway, so if I can offload my data at home and at work on the phone, and limit it otherwise, why not enjoy the savings?

JAGUAR6CY
JAGUAR6CY
4 years ago

The average Republic Wireless customer’s bill last month was $13.75, including data. Because of that I assumed the average RW customer used very little data. But when I suggested this a number responded that they used well over 5 Gb EVERY month and their bill was still in the $13 range. The reason is that they have chosen to use WIFI data not cell data. Pretty smart use of a very inexpensive cell phone plan. So when I read articles like this one I always suspect Verizon is actually writing the copy.

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  JAGUAR6CY

So what you’re really saying is that no one is signing up for those higher priced data plans that I’ve criticized because they are too expensive?

FYI, at this moment in time I do not allow sponsored posts as you’re trying to imply. If I do at some point in the future, the article will clearly be marked as sponsored.

All of the tools are readily available on this website for readers to draw the exact same conclusions as I have.

I’d like to add that several MVNOs offer unlimited LTE data at prices far cheaper than that $85 (max price) 5GB 4G LTE data plan Republic Wireless is offering. Data refund or not, at that maximum price, that plan and a few others do not make sense for the consumer in any way.

https://bestmvno.com/unlimited-data-plans/

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

To get an idea of the caliber of people you’re dealing with, JAGUAR6CY, or ckh on the republic wireless forums, claims that people who use over 1GB of cell data must have some sort of mental illness or addiction issue.

ETPhoneHomeT
ETPhoneHomeT
4 years ago

To me it’s a matter of truth in advertising versus deceptive pricing practices. Republic is just spelling out the price buckets upfront plain as day for all to see. Most of the other wireless providers and MVNO’s tout their unlimited data pricing plans, then specify in the fine print that the plan throttles your data once you reach that so-called unlimited data level. Case in point is Sprint who just announced a $20 unlimited data plan which actually provides 1GB of high speed data and then throttles you to 2G data speeds thereafter.

I used to be with VZW with a grandfathered unlimited data plan and generally consumed 3 to 5 GB of data per month at a cost of $75 per month including an employee discount. RW provides an app and tools that allow you to minimize your data usage and block data consumption on an app by app basis. Result is I’ve increased WiFi offload and reduced my high speed data consumption to less than 300 MB per month since switching to RW and their 2.0 pricing plan. Now, my monthly RW bills are around $15 per month including all taxes and fees.

RW is not for people that require high amounts of high speed data. But for me and others that require 1.5 to 2.0 GB of data per month or less, it can be a great deal. Freedom of choice is good!

JAGUAR6CY
JAGUAR6CY
4 years ago
Reply to  ETPhoneHomeT

It’s odd that everyone goes along with the definition of a “high data user”. In fact many RW users consume 10 Gb of data

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago

Actually, the price is even MORE than $85/month.

It’s actually in excess of $100/month!! OUCH!!!

Republic Wireless tacks on an additional 20-30% in taxes, fees and surcharges. I’ve read many articles recently across the internets about this very same topic – the outrageous pricing that this company tries to desperately hide in slick marketing as “a refund plan”

Their 4G plan, with 5 GB of data, was $40. They raised that to $85 ($10 base $15/gb of data x5 = $85). That’s 112% price increase. Their 3G plan, with 5 GB of data, was $25. Then, they raised THAT to $85. A whopping 240%!! Can we say PRICE GOUGING!!

RW is trying to get rich quick by charging 50% more than Google Fi for the same mobile data. Google Fi only charges $10/gb. And before the fanboys come to the rescue, yes, Fi charges $20 base price BUT…you get SO MUCH MORE with Fi than RW could ever offer. RW is definitely out of their league. With only 300k customers after 4 years of being in business, I think the consumers have spoken – “Avoid Republic Wireless”. There are far more reliable and far more value-priced plans out there, even with the Big Boys.

DavePC
DavePC
4 years ago

I think the piece that the headline doesn’t communicate well is that Republic is a very, very affordable carrier for people who are not heavy data users. I use very about 1 gb of cell data a month or less, my wife uses about 100mb per month. She always gets a refund on her data, so her bill was around $12 plus taxes. Mine worked out to right at the $25 level, since I used a full 1 gb last month.

Again (and yes, I’m a Republic customer) the savings are very much for the lower end users who can offload more and more onto Wi-Fi. I think the break point is around 2 gb. Below 2 gb of cell data, Republic is hard to beat. Above, there are lower cost options.

So, it’s the slant of the headline that is problematic. Cellular data hogs won’t do well with Republic. Data misers will do very, very well on Republic. I also think you way, way, way underestimated the value of the Republic Refund.

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  DavePC

Oh yeah, jacking up prices 240% is SUCHHHHHH a value. Oh yeah, charging $15/gb of mobile data is SOOOOO affordable in comparison to what others are charging.

And it’s interesting how you have a “problem” with the slant of the headline; however, when Republic does it with their grossly-skewed customer data and marketing spin to fool customers, you seem to be okay with that. Hmmm…

DavePC
DavePC
4 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Bevalaccua

No, the new plans are a very good value for the low end user. They are not for a cellular data piggy. If you’re a data piggy go somewhere else. But if you’re willing (or are) a data miser, Republic is basically unbeatable.

And yes, the headline reflects the perception of the data hogs, but not that of data misers.

Here’s the thing for high end users, the prices went up a lot. For lower cell data users, they went down. It’s not marketing spin, it’s basically setting up plans to encourage users to actually do what they intended all along. Keep costs low by leveraging Wi-Fi. Those who abused their old plans cost themselves that option.

So, are you a cellular data piggy hog Mr. Bevalaccua?

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  DavePC

The national average for data use is around 1.8GB/month. So “heavy data users” as you put it should be well, WELL over that figure. Except that’s not what you mean. Because the Republic Wireless prices are so expensive, you’re redefined “heavy data user” to mean over 1GB.

DavePC
DavePC
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

If the national average is 1.8gb that’s about the break even point. Users below about 2 gb will generally save with Republic. Users above that point will generally not save with Republic.

Republic’s target has always been the lower cellular usage users. What this pricing set up does it is benefits those users, and encourages them to be with Republic. It does not benefit high end users (I’ll define as above 2gb), and those users are almost always better off elsewhere.

I rarely bust 1gb on cell, and that was true when I was on the $25 plan, or now on the 2.0 plans.

So, despite your intention to put words in my mouth, I think that it’s key that the break point is around 2 gb.

Here’s the thing, an occasional users that maybe one month a year hits 3gb, but normally only uses 1 gb may still be better off with Republic, paying for that one additional month.

So, are Republic prices expensive? Again, that depends. For me, find me a plan that’s any good that actually beats Republic? I have yet to find one.

For someone using 3gb or more of data, yes, there are cheaper plans. I’m not that hooked on my phone. I don’t need to stream Pandora or Youtube on the go.

bitflung
bitflung
4 years ago
Reply to  DavePC

an interesting side note here:

– if RW’s new business play is successful they will take low-data-users away from other carriers (why pay more than $25/mo elsewhere if you use less than 1GB?)

– most other carriers use a breakage model; so they rely on the AVERAGE user consuming far less than the advertised data allotment each month (just like RW’s old plans did)

– if those low-data-users leave other carriers (coming to RW and similar carriers, including google fi), the breakage model those carriers use will have a new average usage per month; the average actual usage will go UP since fewer low-data-users remain on those plans

– the result will be that the other carriers generate less profit from those plans since the revenues are reduced faster than the data usage is reduced when these low-data-users leave for “cheaper pastures”

– inevitably those other carriers will push to increase the average revenue per users once again; in effect RW (and carriers like them, including google fi) will have caused folks on OTHER CARRIERS to pay more per month without actually improving the profits of their competitors. they will cause the per GB cost to effectively increase on other carriers (based on the type of analysis used in this article anyway – the real cost won’t change but the perceived cost will for breakage model plans)

The real question, at least for me, is how those other carriers might be working to prevent this. Maybe they’ll need to further price-gouge MVNOs? Or perhaps they’ll need to switch to a usage model as well (like RW and Fi)? They won’t stand still, I’m sure of that.

-bit
(RW ambassador, directly expert, etc etc)

marshall
marshall
4 years ago

The new plans are working well for me. I’m on WiFi over 90 percent of the time. Having cellular data for me is a convenience. Under the old plans I would be paying 15 bucks for 3G data plus taxes and fees, and yet I would only use less than 50 cents worth of data based on the new pricing.

Keep in mind that about 40% of the Republic customers were currently on the 10 dollar cell and text plan before the new plans came out. Frankly, they either didn’t need cellular data, or like me had a hard time justifying paying 15 bucks for 50 cent worth of data.

Also there are three new labs coming up. So there are a lot of changes coming at Republic.

There is a market for what Republic is offering. Just because it’s not for you, doesn’t mean it doesn’t work for me.

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  marshall

I’ll be interested in hearing what they are.

marshall
marshall
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

You can view the Republic labs on their web site.

Their social media contact has alluded to a development project that is suppose to knock our socks off.

I don’t know about you, but another phone with their current software is not going to knock my socks off. It’s going to have to be either a dual carrier phone or some kind limited BYOD to match the enthusiasm social media statement.

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  marshall

Thanks. I’m familiar with Republic labs although I hadn’t looked at what’s in store since the announcement and completion of Salsa. I wonder what this development project will be?

marshall
marshall
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

Republic has been pretty tight lipped. Perhaps this thread is of some interest.
https://community.republicwireless.com/message/387356#407320

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  marshall

I wouldn’t count on it. RW social media tends not to communicate well with the rest of the company and they say things just to quell and appease the FB posters. Then, when what they say is not true or accurate, Daddy Dave slaps their hands and they go silent for days. I wouldn’t rely on ANYTHING that is said on social media by RW employees.

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

Here is the most current info on the Republic labs.

https://pwk.republicwireless.com/republic-labs-salsa/

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

Thanks. I look forward to hearing more about multi carrier support. I have to imagine that this ends up being T-Mobile like Project Fi.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago

Be prepared for the avalanche of negative comments. Republic Wireless crowdsources their customer support, and compensates those individuals either directly or indirectly. Articles like these where you call a spade a spade threaten some of their livelihood. Similar to other “network marketing” or “work from home” schemes, the conflict of interest runs deep.

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

coreyk, southpaw, bitflung, billg, louisdi, bocephous, andreas – if you see ANY of these screen names on the Republic Wireless forums, you can pretty much ignore whatever they say.

These are the company “defenders, apologists and fanboys” that RW staff quickly emails when there is bad press out on the internet, so they can spring into action to take up sword and shield to defend them. It’s quite pathetic.

bitflung
bitflung
4 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Bevalaccua

wow. I am bitflung. i’m an abassador on RW’s community. i’m also a passive participant in the directly support system (i’ve answered a very small number of questions there – i much prefer helping folks on the community site where the answers are publicly viewable for future readers).

the ambassador role is meant to enable me (and the other ambassadors) to represent the USERS to RW: we watch for cases where RW is failing to best support their users and to alert RW about these situations so those users get the support they need. in some cases this means highlighting a user who was dissatisfied with the normal support experience, in other cases it means critiquing the way RW does business or presents their services/devices/etc are not transparent/etc enough. our main purpose is (in my words) to ensure that RW doesn’t forget to treat their users well.

there is a lot of misinformation on the net (in all industries, all topics). most ambassadors also make it a point to help sort through misinformation and float the objective truth to the top. while not part of what RW actually asks of us, i take this specific role very seriously.

i’m actually a bit hurt that you personally called me out (among others) in such a manner. please, if you can find any example where i’ve behaved in a manner deserving of being labeled like this share it here. if you’ve spent any meaningful time on the RW community you’ll know that i’m not afraid to admit when i’m wrong and i do so publicly without deleting any old posts. if i’ve actually done something worthy of the comments you’ve made i will own up to it and add my public apology right in the offending post(s) just as i normally do (as i like to say, i’m very good at being wrong and have had years of practice to perfect the art – i’ve added public apologies to posts in the past and am not afraid to do so again)

i don’t know who you are or why you distrust me so much. the other ambassadors you’ve singled out are people i’ve grown quite fond of and have a lot of respect for as well, and i don’t understand how you could mistake their historical participation as being anything worthy of the comment you’ve made here.

i’m an ambassador: RW asks the ambassadors to participate in the community to and ring a bell within RW’s organization when we see RW doing something that harms their users. if i’ve done anything worthy of the comments you are making here then i’ve failed at the task RW requests of me. for that i’m sorry. this is not enough though: most community members won’t see this post. PLEASE share a link to whatever content has led you to this conclusion so i can properly inform the RW community of my mistake.

-bit

Lando Calrissian
Lando Calrissian
4 years ago

Oh boy. The pricing is just the tip of the iceberg. You should take a gander at their “support” forum.

Look up “delayed dial” or “post dial delay” or “calls straight to voicemail” or “missed calls” — all problems caused by Republic’s technology; the botched and delayed upgrade to Lollipop, the new phone (Moto G 2015) that has less RAM than the stock version AND costs more; the crumbling relationship with their sole phone vendor (Motorola). The list goes on.

Kevin Roels
Kevin Roels
4 years ago

I should add, the $5 plan is still available, it is just not displayed as an option on the front page. You can switch to it at any time.

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  Kevin Roels

Thanks for the tip. I’ll update the article in a bit with that information.

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago

First, you have an inaccuracy in the article. It hasn’t eliminated the $5 plan. It just isn’t available in the checkout process. You can switch to the $5 plan through the Republic app.

Second, as someone that was previously on the $40 4g plan with Republic, I am now saving over $20 a month on the new plan. This article doesn’t highlight enough the fact that low data users will save a lot of money when switching to these plans. Very biased article in my opinion. If you use over 2 GB a month data then it will probably be a good idea to look for another carrier

Bestmvno.com
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

Thanks for the tip about the $5 plan, the article will be updated shortly.

The focus of this article was to highlight and talk about the new plans which is why a brief mention was given to the old plans. It was also mentioned that the lower priced plans still provide value to consumers.

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

Just a thought. You might want to do more than 5 minutes of research of a subject you choose to write on.

Long Gone
Long Gone
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

They provide value if you are one of the lucky ones that can make and receive calls, send and receive texts. In the last few months the service has declined in capability and more and more users are seeing their service suffer. The way RW uses the dialer is a farce.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  Bestmvno.com

FYI Corek K is an independent contractor for Republic Wireless customer support.

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

That is not true. Sorry to burst your bubble!

Mike | Homeless On Wheels
Mike | Homeless On Wheels
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

So you are saying that you are no longer providing Republic support via Directly?

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago

I have made my statement. You and RW (if you aren’t the same person) can continue to troll me here or in the community. I done interacting with the two of you. You bring a toxicity to the community that frankly I think shouldn’t be allowed. There is a way to bring up the negatives of RW without trolling and you two obviously haven’t master that.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

I have no idea what you’re talking about. Nobody is trolling anyone. We are not the same person.

I merely stated that you had an undisclosed conflict of interest in this discussion, which you do. Republic Wireless offloads support to Directly, which in turn, offloads it to independent contractors (that’s you) in exchange for rewards and other types of compensation.

Sorry you can’t delete my comments here 🙂

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

I don’t have any conflict of interest. That is my disclosure. Again, my opinions are my own. You are correct. I can’t delete your comments here. I don’t wish to. I deleted my comments from the RW community to avoid breaking their community guidelines.

The overall takeaway that you should take from this is that you and homeless are both the definition of a troll! This will be my last response to either you or homeless either here on in the community.

You can troll on to your hearts content.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

Answer the question: do you provide support to Republic Wireless by way of Directly?

If the answer is yes, then there is a conflict of interest. Based on how you’ve wriggled and wormed to avoid answering that question, I’m assuming that’s a “yes”.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

It’s also clear from this conversation that I have not resorted to name calling (unlike you) and I have not tried to bait the other person into attack (unlike you). You are trying to “take the high road” or play the “damsel in distress” because I’ve called out the conflict of interest that you work (indirectly) for Republic Wireless.

rwuser OUT! 😀

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  rwuser

You won’t see Corey answer as he has been exposed. He’s probably already back on the RW forums sending out private messages to all of the other ambassadors and fanboys to come here to defend him now. Sad, sooo sad. 🙁

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

Trolling you? Wow, get a grip. You’ve been called out for pretending to be someone that you are not, and when you don’t like that, you resort to insults by calling them trolls. Take a look in the mirror, Mr. Directly-I’m-So-Happy-To-Help.

Corey K
Corey K
4 years ago

Wow you can like your comments here too! Have you broken your own arm patting yourself on the back?

Mr. Bevalaccua
Mr. Bevalaccua
4 years ago
Reply to  Corey K

Actually, it’s VERY true. You are one of the “free workers” that RW employs. And the proof is out there. There is a YouTube video of Sean Rivers talking about Directly customer service and then YOU appear in the video to brag about how you love being part of Directly and giving good customer service. BUSTED!!

Just stay on the RW forums where you are safe to get the support and backing from your other brown-nosing ‘free workers’.

rwuser
rwuser
4 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Bevalaccua