Author Topic: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?  (Read 7380 times)

CarFIRE

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Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« on: December 28, 2014, 09:52:21 PM »
My SO and I are using Verizon with 1GB of shared data, most of the time using Wifi.  This costs $153/mo including all taxes and fees.  I know I have to buy the phone, but what is the actually monthly billing cost on a $40 data plan with Republic when you add taxes and fees etc?  I want to compare apples to apples before I guy a phone.  Being a phone nerd and using it alot, I would get a Nexus 6 if it wasn't $700 and use T-mobile which for 2 of us would be $90, I think vs $80 for Republic. 

Second question:  I like my Galaxy Note 2.  Anyone know of a Verizon Network, non-verizon option?

Thanks!

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2014, 11:11:54 PM »
Have you read the guide yet? (the unabridged is more useful) That's what it's there for.

As for the Republic "deal"? It's not particularly, especially when you don't need anything approaching anywhere near their nebulous definitions of "unlimited" usage. $400 for the phone just to get the $40/month plan, and the $40/month plan is an okay price at best for what you're paying for in the MVNO market, and hideous overkill for your data needs. Also, you'll have anywhere between $5-12 in taxes on top of that depending on where you live, and you'll also have to deal with no support, a list of service caveats and shortcomings that you don't have to deal with using a real mobile provider, and a draconian terms of service.

Given you mentioned possibly going T-Mobile ideally and the possibility of you having Verizon LTE handsets that may very well be carrier unlocked GSM compatible, it might be worth looking into that option and going with a T-Mo MVNO like P'tel if it's possible (though mobile data access speeds will suffer for it). Otherwise, currently the only Verizon MVNO activating LTE handsets is Page Plus, and only on their $30+ plans. I need to update the guide again, but LTE is coming to other Verizon MVNOs sooner than later, and I'm no longer comfortable recommending Page Plus anymore for whole mess of reasons... but Selectel (and the other Verizon MVNOs that I might be inclined to eventually suggest) aren't quite ready yet.

The Note II specifically should be usable on an AT&T or T-Mobile MVNO, but you won't be able to set data APN settings without switching to a third party firmware like Cyanogenmod first.

Anyway, relevant other bits of link flotsam you might find usable/relevant:
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/verizon-network-resellers-in-the-bay-area/msg481534/#msg481534
http://www.techmeshugana.com/2014/07/trulocalphone-magic/
http://www.techmeshugana.com/2013/12/what-is-mobile-media-costing-you/
http://www.techmeshugana.com/2014/08/the-math-of-unlimited/
« Last Edit: December 28, 2014, 11:16:52 PM by I.P. Daley »

CarFIRE

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2014, 12:20:36 AM »
Daley, I hadnt seen the guide and I did do a search before posting.  That said thanks for the badass post and all the info!

MayDay

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2014, 05:27:42 AM »
We just switched from Verizon to cricket. I'm still using my "old" Verizon phone, and the cost is 35$ a month with no extra fees or taxes. That plan has 1gb of data.

kendallf

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2014, 06:43:37 AM »
I'm paying $31.13/mo with all taxes and fees on the $25 plan, in FL.  I think you can guess that it would be somewhere just under $50.  I have had great coverage and service with my Republic phone.

I do think the proprietary software is a bit of a downer, although I got multiple rebates on my Moto X when I bought it and only paid effectively $150 or so (it's been a year, can't remember exactly).  I saw a post a week or two ago that you can hack this now if you want to take the RW phone out, however. 


FarmerPete

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2014, 06:52:48 AM »
I also only use the $25 plan. Total cost in MI is just under $30.  I can't see myself ever using the $40 plan.  If you have WiFi most of the time, why ever go for the 4G plan?  Doesn't make sense.  I think the cheapest "easy" plan I've seen lately is the Cricket plan.  $35 for one line.  If you can get 5 people together, you can end up paying $20 per line.  Very nice deal.  Cricket is on the ATT network.

Future Lazy

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2014, 07:06:00 AM »
2 x $25 plan for us comes out to about $58/mo. We used to have AT&T at ~$200/mo for half as much data (+ overages).

DH and I use tons of data, mostly wasting our time on sites like imgur but also using youtube and skype on the go. While we don't usually approach 5gb individually (although we usually exceed 6gb combined), I like the comfort of knowing there's buttloads of data and hand as needed in case of whatever. Republic sold me on this massive data limit, lack of overages and their extremely straightforward legal documents on their website.

Good luck finding what's right for you!

MrBuckBeard

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2014, 07:12:24 AM »
I'm in Massachusetts.  I have the 3g plan.  My $25/month plan comes to $29.85 after taxes.  It's SUPER nice budgeting $30 for the entire phonebill.

I have a Nexus 4, and eventually an Note 3 on Sprint.  I went to the Moto G.  Honestly, with the price being so much smaller, I don't miss the bigger phones. 

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2014, 07:17:48 AM »
Daley, I hadnt seen the guide and I did do a search before posting.  That said thanks for the badass post and all the info!

Not a problem.

As for why you probably didn't find it in a search, I've noticed the search box weighs newer posts and active threads as more relevant, and sometimes returns different results than the Search link in the user menu between the Help and Profile links. However, the thread is stickied in the Share Your Badassity subforum.

FarmerPete

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2014, 08:05:49 AM »
I went with the MotoX on RW.  I had a Nexus 4 before hand.  The MotoX is decent enough.  I know the new one is even better.  I got a $100 motorola rebate on the phone by sending in an old Defy I bought off eBay for $20.  I also signed up using a referral link to save on my first bill.  I sold the Nexus 4 on Craigslist.  Total cost to go from the Nexus 4 on Straight Talk ($49 a month bill) to RW with $29 bill was $300-$100-$175+$20 = $45.  So for $45 outlay, I am saving $240 a year.  I'll probably end up keeping this phone for 3 years total before replacing it.

lielec11

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2014, 08:35:09 AM »
We just switched from Verizon to cricket. I'm still using my "old" Verizon phone, and the cost is 35$ a month with no extra fees or taxes. That plan has 1gb of data.

MayDay, how has your experience been so far with cricket? Also, along with the 1GB data, what are your calling and text limits? From the small amount of research I've done, I haven't found a Verizon MVNO that I like. Also, as someone up thread indicated cricket is on the ATT Network, is this a problem with Verizon LTE phones like the Galaxy S4?
« Last Edit: December 29, 2014, 08:38:23 AM by lielec11 »

Bob W

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2014, 08:51:06 AM »
I bought the $100 Motorola from RW and the $10 plan.  Since I have Wifi at home and work that is all I need.   I have found that there is absolutely no need for the internet while out and about.  So after one month with out the internet at the touch of my hands at every living moment I have begun to get my life back a little. 

I lived 40 years with no cell phone, so not having 24/7 internet isn't that big a deal. 

So my cost has gone from about 70 per month to 10 for myself.  I am converting my wife this month and already added a daughter.   So our total bill will go from about 160 to 30 for an annual savings of 1,500.   

Once we retire, I honestly think that no internet, no cable and two 10 phones will be more than enough. 


Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2014, 08:53:42 AM »
We just switched from Verizon to cricket. I'm still using my "old" Verizon phone, and the cost is 35$ a month with no extra fees or taxes. That plan has 1gb of data.

MayDay, how has your experience been so far with cricket? Also, along with the 1GB data, what are your calling and text limits? From the small amount of research I've done, I haven't found a Verizon MVNO that I like. Also, as someone up thread indicated cricket is on the ATT Network, is this a problem with Verizon LTE phones like the Galaxy S4?

Obviously I'm not MayDay, but I can answer several of those questions. Cricket's support department can be pretty pitiful across the board, but the actual cellular service should be equal to AT&T coverage. The only real difference is the data speeds (throttled, obviously) and some reliability with their proxy servers. The talk and text plan on their 1GB package is "unlimited", but more realistically probably falls in line more with the MVNO sales bundles of 5000 minutes and 10,000 texts, though it could be significantly less... especially with it being owned by AT&T and unlimited never truly being unlimited. It's also worth noting that the 1GB data package is only a promo deal and will likely be returned back to 500MB with throttled 2G data access over that sometime next year, it remains to be seen whether they'll grandfather people in or just revert the data package... but again, they're owned by AT&T so expect a maximum jackass factor. The Galaxy S4 should be easy enough to take over to AT&T and should be fine. IIRC, the GSM slot is fully carrier unlocked and the APN settings aren't crippled.

FarmerPete

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2014, 08:59:55 AM »
Worst customer support I've ever gotten from a any company was Straight Talk.  I guess that serves me right for going with Wal-Mart's phone service.  /facepalm

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2014, 09:18:24 AM »
Worst customer support I've ever gotten from a any company was Straight Talk.  I guess that serves me right for going with Wal-Mart's phone service.  /facepalm

That's America Movil for you, and it's partly why I did the guide in the first place (to help others avoid crappy MVNOs) and also why I can't really recommend Page Plus anymore. Cricket's still better than StraightTalk/NET10/Tracfone/SIMple Mobile/Page Plus, though... but that sort of talk falls under the category of turd polishing. Cricket at this point is only in the guide by virtue of not being able to vanish into the ether given the parent company, but that particular stay of execution is running out given how quickly things are sliding south.

lielec11

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2014, 11:39:55 AM »
We just switched from Verizon to cricket. I'm still using my "old" Verizon phone, and the cost is 35$ a month with no extra fees or taxes. That plan has 1gb of data.

MayDay, how has your experience been so far with cricket? Also, along with the 1GB data, what are your calling and text limits? From the small amount of research I've done, I haven't found a Verizon MVNO that I like. Also, as someone up thread indicated cricket is on the ATT Network, is this a problem with Verizon LTE phones like the Galaxy S4?

Obviously I'm not MayDay, but I can answer several of those questions. Cricket's support department can be pretty pitiful across the board, but the actual cellular service should be equal to AT&T coverage. The only real difference is the data speeds (throttled, obviously) and some reliability with their proxy servers. The talk and text plan on their 1GB package is "unlimited", but more realistically probably falls in line more with the MVNO sales bundles of 5000 minutes and 10,000 texts, though it could be significantly less... especially with it being owned by AT&T and unlimited never truly being unlimited. It's also worth noting that the 1GB data package is only a promo deal and will likely be returned back to 500MB with throttled 2G data access over that sometime next year, it remains to be seen whether they'll grandfather people in or just revert the data package... but again, they're owned by AT&T so expect a maximum jackass factor. The Galaxy S4 should be easy enough to take over to AT&T and should be fine. IIRC, the GSM slot is fully carrier unlocked and the APN settings aren't crippled.

Thanks Daley. From your experience/research what are the best Verizon MVNO's? I noticed there didn't seem to be many you had high praise for in your guide..

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2014, 12:02:26 PM »
Thanks Daley. From your experience/research what are the best Verizon MVNO's? I noticed there didn't seem to be many you had high praise for in your guide..

The biggest problem is longevity as keeping the lights on with a Verizon MVNO is harder than on any of the other three networks. The next biggest problem is device restrictions in place by Verizon with their MVNOs. Page Plus was recommended prior to the AM buyout because of the longevity of the business, customer support and reasonably liberal activation policies. No matter how good, most other Verizon MVNOs never even seem to make it past the six month mark, let alone two year.

Right now as of the current state of things, I'm officially pulling my Page Plus recommendation as of January 15th (will probably remove Cricket at the same time), which is when the domestic support center is shuttered. Unfortunately, they're the only MVNO with LTE support currently, which means they're the only MVNO that can activate any Verizon LTE devices now. This technically makes them the only game in town for most customers wanting a Verizon MVNO.

Selectel looks like it's in for the long haul at this point and will eventually replace PP in the guide when they ding two years, but they haven't launched LTE support yet. This means they can currently only activate non-LTE Verizon postpaid handsets, which are slowly vanishing, especially on the smartphone end. I'm holding out hope for Red Pocket's newer CDMA offerings, BYO Wireless and Puppy Wireless longer term as we need more Verizon-based competition (none of these have LTE as yet either), but they're not established enough for me to feel comfortable recommending as of yet because I don't want to see another person go through the same fiasco as a few in these forums did with TalkForGood a couple years back (another one of many failed Verizon MVNOs). Like it or not, Big Red clearly doesn't like their wholesalers. There's a reason why I recommend people avoid Verizon and CDMA service in general unless they absolutely need it for their region, the GSM end is cheaper and has more established competition.

It's a difficult position though, because I know these newer Verizon MVNOs won't survive without customers... so I want to recommend them, especially if they're worth recommending. Unfortunately, I also know how much of a pain it is to have an MVNO shutter in the middle of the night without any notice to their customers and the difficulty that causes to getting out and transferring your number to another provider. Some MVNOs when closing do the decent and right thing and notify their customers of the pending shutdown (and it's usually because they're long established), but most startups just vanish.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2014, 12:09:23 PM by I.P. Daley »

whammer33024

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2014, 12:10:33 PM »
so i messed up by recently switching to kittywireless?

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2014, 12:21:51 PM »
so i messed up by recently switching to kittywireless?

I love the folks at Kitty, and I've recommended people activating with PP to go through them for quite some time. They're the ones starting up Puppy Wireless in fact (one of the underdogs I'm really rooting for to make it). My problem is with Page Plus itself, or more specifically its newer parent company America Movil. It's a problem with the quality of customer service, the prices, and the legal contracts. If it works for you and you can stomach that stuff and ride it out, go for it... but I don't feel comfortable recommending these sorts of crummy "cheap" providers to folks looking to switch because it just doesn't jive with the way I roll. It makes it hard for me to sleep at night if I did.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2014, 12:23:28 PM by I.P. Daley »

coffeefueled

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2014, 12:41:13 PM »
I've had the motoX through RW for about a year. 3G plan = 29.85 a month after all the taxes etc. So far it's a very easy switch from Verizon. I was a little worried about being locked into the RW phone, but I've already recouped the cost of the phone in monthly bill savings and I don't plan on switching anytime soon. Admittedly I'm not a heavy data user outside of wifi at home beyond avoiding traffic, looking up the occasional factoid, or checking clash of clans.

TheGadfly

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2014, 11:01:47 AM »
currently the only Verizon MVNO activating LTE handsets is Page Plus,

I have a Verizon phone and when I entered my IMEI into Ting's compatibility checker, I got a message that my phone will be ting compatible in February 2015: https://ting.com/blog/ting-to-offer-service-on-a-gsm-network/

Does this mean I can use my current phone on Ting as soon as the GSM service rolls out?  I'm thinking of switching to Ting anyway, but not having to buy a new phone would be incredible.

Daley

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2014, 11:14:47 AM »
currently the only Verizon MVNO activating LTE handsets is Page Plus,

I have a Verizon phone and when I entered my IMEI into Ting's compatibility checker, I got a message that my phone will be ting compatible in February 2015: https://ting.com/blog/ting-to-offer-service-on-a-gsm-network/

Does this mean I can use my current phone on Ting as soon as the GSM service rolls out?  I'm thinking of switching to Ting anyway, but not having to buy a new phone would be incredible.

It probably means that you can use your Verizon handset with any GSM provider already, including Airvoice and P'tel. Ting's not a great deal unless you're doing multi-line accounts, even less so on the GSM end for PAYGO service levels and when there's also "unlimited" talk and text plans with data attached starting at $20/month.

Many, but not all Verizon LTE handsets are carrier unlocked for domestic GSM service. You don't necessarily have to stay with a Verizon MVNO.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2014, 11:16:41 AM by I.P. Daley »

ShortInSeattle

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Re: Republic Wireless True Cost? Decent Verizon MVNO?
« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2014, 12:38:10 PM »
We just switched from Verizon to cricket. I'm still using my "old" Verizon phone, and the cost is 35$ a month with no extra fees or taxes. That plan has 1gb of data.

MayDay, how has your experience been so far with cricket? Also, along with the 1GB data, what are your calling and text limits? From the small amount of research I've done, I haven't found a Verizon MVNO that I like. Also, as someone up thread indicated cricket is on the ATT Network, is this a problem with Verizon LTE phones like the Galaxy S4?

Obviously I'm not MayDay, but I can answer several of those questions. Cricket's support department can be pretty pitiful across the board, but the actual cellular service should be equal to AT&T coverage. The only real difference is the data speeds (throttled, obviously) and some reliability with their proxy servers. The talk and text plan on their 1GB package is "unlimited", but more realistically probably falls in line more with the MVNO sales bundles of 5000 minutes and 10,000 texts, though it could be significantly less... especially with it being owned by AT&T and unlimited never truly being unlimited. It's also worth noting that the 1GB data package is only a promo deal and will likely be returned back to 500MB with throttled 2G data access over that sometime next year, it remains to be seen whether they'll grandfather people in or just revert the data package... but again, they're owned by AT&T so expect a maximum jackass factor. The Galaxy S4 should be easy enough to take over to AT&T and should be fine. IIRC, the GSM slot is fully carrier unlocked and the APN settings aren't crippled.

This squares with my experience of Cricket. We switched from AT&T to Cricket and saw our monthly bill drop from $135 down to $70 for two lines with 1G data each.  We also got a couple free phones (after rebate).  Buying the phones and getting service established was a pain in the butt, and customer service was fairly non-existent. But now that they are up and running they work great.

Cricket has a few quirks. We had difficulty signing up for service online, and the fix is "go to a store" but the stores are not plentiful and they charge $35 per phone for activation if you use a store. There is a $5 discount for auto-pay, but it applies to one line only, not both lines.

Overall we're happy with Cricket and even happier to be off of a contract, but the start up was rocky.