Republic Wireless Widens Beta; Adds Phone
Since January 2012 I have been a beta user of the Republic Wireless (RW) cell phone service, which costs $19/month for unlimited voice, text and data. The "catch" if you will is that where possible your phone uses Wi-FI networks and falls back to Sprint where Wi-Fi isn't available. RW is owned by Bandwidth.com, a large networking company.
They have announced a wider beta and added a 2nd phone to the plan. The first was an LG Optimus and now they are offering a Motorola DEFY XT. These are NOT high end phones and the speculation is that another model will be introduced in the next few months for folks who are power users and want more features. I have been happy with the feature set of the LG (Android 2.2) and between free Wi-Fi at my haunts (Johns Restaurant, China Fortune, Torlones) and Sprint, I am satisfied. Due to the requirements of switching from Wi-Fi to cell carrier, you are not able to "root" the phone without breaking the networking and violating your agreement with RW. Using it as a hot spot or tying it to a computer to share access is also prohibited. Future plan upgrades may include some of these features.
You can sign up for the next wave as they call it at:
The only thing I really NEED a cell phone for is calling Comcast when the internet goes down. But would this phone fill that bill?
Also, I'm tired of these so-called "unlimited" data plans. A site search over there doesn't show the word "throttling" even once, meaning they aren't denying it, but apparently none of the beta testers are asking about it.
During the great blackout of 2012, the RW cell phone was my only connection to civilization, network wise. I recharged it from the genny and even posted status reports here via Tapatalk. Of course our wired phone had dial tone so I could still order food for delivery that way :-)
Originally Posted by Tony
You may want to search the legacy web site forums, as they cut over to a new portal recently. A search on "throttling" does get some results there.
Originally Posted by Tony
Last edited by chipgallo; 08-02-2012 at 11:09 AM.
Reason: continuous improvement
I suppose the 30 day money back guarantee means I could at least try it. But I hate the thought of paying $20 a month and never using the thing. Maybe in the future they'll come up with some cheaper plans.
I was offered the Motorola DEFY XT to replace my original LG. From the time I clicked to shipment by FedEx was less than 60 minutes. The new phone arrived within 24 hours and I am setting it up today. They are giving these away to "wave A" beta program members because the DEFY XT is a single band phone and cannot roam on the 800MHz towers. Prolly no biggie for me but we shall see ...
David Morden, co-Founder of Republic Wireless, talks to some NC university students in this YT video. He does something at the beginning that I have never seen in an IT presentation.
Oh cute. But I think it may just represent his growing madness with the whole concept. Disclaimer: I have not watched the whole 45 minutes.
In the meantime, my Ooma is still working well. Connected to my old Panasonic wireless phones I have wireless all around the house. Using Bluetooth I could also use my nexus 7 as a handset. But it's probably just easier to use Skype with that.
The only possible advantage I can see to Republic is that I could use Wifi in remote locations. Like at lunch today at Ruby Tuesday. Free wifi, and an endless salad bar with any entree (fill up with salad and save the entree for a later meal). But instead I tend to just browse the web at free hotspots.
How do you like the Nexus? I am trying to wait for the rumored 32GB version at the 16GB price point. The Shack sells them web only.
Of course I am already extremely jealous of the 32gb version! But the fact is I'm only using 50% of my 16gb version so I'm probably just being silly.
I should point out that I have set up a server here at the house that primarily serves Plex. And Calibre. That's movies, TV shows, TV recordings, and books. No need to store large files on my tablet.