How are new plans better?

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#1

I am pretty frustrated. I need to get a new phone because mine is having issues but I am on the refund planned that they came out with last year. Now they have changed the plans and they are only $5 cheaper then competitors for the same data and the competitors let you roll your date over. Where did the affordable Republic go? Am I missing something.


New Phone, and plan price increase, for existing customer
Old Phone Options for original $25/5GB plan
Switch from choice plan to refund plan
Republic Refund after a broken phone?
#2

Here are the things you may be missing:

  1. Republic was built for, and the pricing model still reflects, the desire to serve low data usage customers. The $15 talk/text plan and $20 1GB plan are still quite hard to beat in the industry. As an example, Cricket charges $25 for talk/text and their plan does not allow MMS.

  2. The data on the 3.0 plans is actually 50% less expensive than the data on the Republic Refund plans (though no refunds).

  3. Republic has stated, and the industry pricing model would agree, that a $25/$40 unlimited model (1.0) was not viable from a business perspective.

  4. The new model has allowed them to fund things like allowing unlocked phones without modifications, BYOP, multiple carriers, etc.


#3

Don’t forget unlimited roaming calling, texting, and MMS. Most low-cost providers do not include any roaming or integrated WiFi without cost. We include it, without limit, at no additional charge.


#4

I have another question on a review of the new phones some one mentioned that now to listen to voicemail you need to be on the network not on wifi. Is that true? I live on an island where the only source I really have is WIFI there is no cell tower where I live.


#5

Not true at all. In fact you can listen to voicemail using the visual voicemail interface which doesn’t require a “call” at all.


#6

Thank you to both of you.


#7

Two months ago I bought a new Moto G Play for my wife to replace her Moto X first generation.

The Moto G Play has the "Clear Choice Talk and Text " plan for $15 per month.

The Moto X had the “WiFi and Cell Talk and Text” plan for $10 per month.

I don’t see any difference between these plans except a higher price for the new plan. What am I missing? What’s better for the extra $5 per month?


#8

I am wondering about the same thing. If I buy a new phone and am still on the Republic Refund plan do I have to give that up? It looks like I am not able keep my Refund plan.


#9

It is true that on face value…one plan costs $5 more than the other…but if you dig deeper
you will find

a) RW worked hard to deliver on a recurring demand from the customer base for new phones and quicker updates. This was all enabled by the new technology that allowed RW to get out of the ROM so that all the new phones are factory unlocked and may be used with other carriers if RW turns out not being a good fit for you. Also, if you travel internationally, you can pop in a local SIM and use your phone over there as well.
Being factory unlocked, these phones also get quicker system and security updates straight from the manufacturer. As new phones keep coming into the market…RW has been able to continually keep adding them to the supported line up at a much quicker pace.

b) Technology development, new GSM coverage partner all these things are being done as RW continues to innovate. These items do not come at zero cost. I have two phones on the Clear Choice plan and two phones on the Refund plans…the overall calling experience on the new phones is vastly superior on the Clear Choice plan phones.

c) At the end of the day…the $10/mo or the Refund plans were an incredible deal…but clearly not sustainable long term. The $15/mo is still a pretty good deal. It is really up to you to evaluate if it still makes sense for you, for your particular situation.

I would take a company that offers reasonable rates and stays profitable and sustainable any day over one that provides a once-in-a-lifetime deal and then vanishes before dawn!


#10

That is correct…all new phones work on the Clear Choice Plans.

Only way to preserve your Refund plan is to continue using your existing phone or
get a used Republic Wireless custom version of the Moto X1,X2, G1, G3, E1 or E2
from third party resellers


#11

Can anyone suggest some third party resellers if I want to replace my broken phone and keep the old plan?


#12

Take a look at Ebay or Swappa.

Also, take a look at this document for some useful tips


#13

Thank you for the information. Hands down Republic Wireless is a much better deal than any of the big carriers I’ve used and we are all super happy with it. It’s definitely worth the extra $5. Just wanted to double check before I buy a new phone.


#14

@amitl covers it well. Here is the official explanation from Republic: “Republic Wireless Clear Choice plans are an entirely new offer and have tons of new features like wider range of phones, more timely phone launches, faster Android updates, and a Bring Your Own Phone (BYOP) experience. With these features, we’ve also made changes to price points.”


#15

We’ve had some interesting responses here from impassioned supporters. Unfortunately, those responses have skirted the original question “Where did the affordable Republic go?”

I first heard of RW through a Consumer Reports article. At that time RW was an “interesting but not very good” company attempting to make VOIP telephones affordable and reliable.

A newspaper article about year later indicated RW had solved most of its most critical VOIP issues. I’ve been a customer ever since and currently have three active phones.

Unfortunately, two are Moto X phones with failing batteries that can’t be replaced. After the acquisition of a used Moto G and a new Moto G Play as potential replacements, I’ve discovered that RW has left the long-time, basic VOIP customer behind. RW no longer offers the very affordable basic VOIP plans for new phones such as the Moto G Play.

Most of my neighbors are seniors who just want to make and receive calls. “Smartphones” with a lot of “apps” and “features” are a mystery to most of them. They are (were) amazed at the low monthly cost of my RW VOIP phones. I’ve “sold” two neighbors on RW but “sales” are harder now because many of my neighbors have been added to their sons or daughters “family plans” at $10/month/phone. So in a sense, RW is pricing itself out of the basic VOIP market which it has conquered.

Since RW long ago solved the basic VOIP issues, and WiFi hasn’t changed, I see no reason why RW can’t provide the old pricing plans to existing, and loyal, customers who must buy replacement phones. Anyone needing the new features the new phones have can quickly and easily upgrade to the new pricing plans with more features.


#16

The old pricing plans relied both on some assumptions that Republic made when they launched the service, and on wholesale pricing for services that existed at that time.

  1. You could launch a service and “ask” people to use more wifi, and they would. This didn’t turn out to be true.

  2. That you could slow down data after a certain amount of usage, and that would drastically reduce the amount of data people use. It didn’t.

  3. That with $10 you could both provide unlimited calling/texting and support to someone and still make some money. Based on the increase, this still appeared to be untrue.

Once again, I challenge you to find a service that offers unlimited calling/texting for $15/mo that includes unlimited MMS. “Where did the affordable Republic go?” It’s still here and healthly, for low data users, which is what Republic was meant for in the first place.

EDITED TO ADD: Even a service like “Consumer Cellular” which is targeted at seniors (and endorsed by the AARP) charges $15 per month for 250 minutes of talk and no capability to send pictures. Meanwhile, for this same $15 you get UNLIMITED calling/texting and grandkid pics on Republic.


#17

I guess your seniors are very old. The seniors in my age group, 60 to 66, all have smart phones and use apps like Google maps.

The 15 dollars a month for unlimited text and calling, including MMS, is still a very attractive price. The 5 dollars extra for the 1GB of cellular data makes it a bit better still.

I do believe the increase to 15 dollars is subsidizing the 1GB of data plan and also increases revenue to help pay for increases in expenses.

You are correct in that the competition is getting tougher, and nothing guarantees a company will survive.

I will say that one is putting all your eggs in one basket with these family plans. Plus, once you get in them, it seems you are pretty much held hostage by the other family members. So make sure everyone is on the same page if mom and dad aren’t picking up the tab.


#18

Marshall you are correct. My nearby neighbors (about 120 individuals) probably average 80 to 85. I, myself, am now a little bit beyond the age group you mentioned. So, yes, we are VERY old. Thank you for the compliment, I think. ((;-)).
But we’re not fossils. When I need to do something exotic with Excel, for example, my “go to” guy is 87 this year.
Realizing there’s a generation gap in this discussion (in technology, 3.5 years is probably a generation) I should have written a little more descriptive detail.
When my wife and I bought our Moto X first generation phones in December of 2013, RW had a $5/month plan which was WiFi only for unlimited talk, text and data. “Asking” customers to use more WiFi was not a concern since the plan was WiFi only - there was no other option (no cell service at all).
The RW $10/month plan at that same time added the Sprint cell network as backup for voice telephone calls only. That Sprint backup was great for making and receiving telephone calls while on the road (passenger use only of course). Again, there was no data volume concern (push customers to WiFi) with the $10 plan because WiFi was the default for everything. Sprint was available only for voice calls and only if WiFi was not available.
Louisdi you challenged me (apparently twice) to find a service that offers unlimited calling/texting, etc., for $15/month. What you may not know is that RW still has those $5 and $10/month unlimited talk, text and data plans for the Moto X and some other first generation phones. Our two Moto X phones, each on the $5/month plan, have traveled with us around the world. Wherever, we have found a good WiFi connection we have been able to do everything (telephone calls, texts, emails, games, reading the hometown newspaper, picture exchanges, etc.) that we are able to do at home in the States. The most recent trip was two weeks ago. We have never had to buy special chips or use special codes or pay extra fees when traveling. I don’t know what value you intended to assign to your challenge but I’ll accept a simple “Thank you for telling me something I didn’t know.” message.
So we’ve now established that RW, as a relatively mature communications company, knows how to make maximum use of WiFi for unlimited talk, text and data. RW has done this, successfully, for a smartphone “generation” and still does it today for “old” customers like me who can keep their first generation phones alive.
The problem is that RW does not offer the $5 and $10/month plans for the phones that are available now and hence the question "Where did the affordable Republic go?"
So RW, if you monitor these discussions (of course you do), please offer the $5 and $10/month plans with the new phones. Only your “old” customers will select such primitive plans and then only when they need a replacement phone. Everyone else will select the more expensive plans.
We understand, of course, that operating costs go up (slowly over the past 3.5 years) in the communications business and that some price increase may be necessary. So maybe a $7.50/month plan for WiFi service only (a 50% increase over 3.5 years) is OK. Then maybe $15 as the next step is OK too.
This has been fun. Thanks for reading.


#19

The wifi only plan is not currently possible with 3.0 as the option of GSM networks means the republic number need to be linked to an active SIM, base cost has gone up to gain access to a GSM network is why the $10 plan became $15

And you are correct the old plans still work with the old phones [Republic is being nice and not forcing all those users to move to New phones and plans as they could have stop all reactivations on those phones]


#20

My Moto X first gen was damaged, and I would have had to send it to the manufacturer for repair to continue to use my service. I tried local repair shops, but they couldn’t help. I was told that I would not be able to continue my current plan if I purchased a different phone. I was on the refund plan with one GB of data. While on the plan, the data was slow. I decided to purchase a Moto X Pure Edition, so that I can switch to any carrier. I decided to go with Metro PCS. They are currently offering a special of $30 per month (total, which includes taxes) for unlimited talk and text and 2 GB of data. After the 2 GB are used, I get unlimited slower data. My experience has been ideal, so far. The first two GB are fast, and I am still able to play youtube videos even on the slow data (with buffering, of course), and can still use data to navigate and use apps like shopping apps.

I wouldn’t go back to RW, given that I can’t have my old plans and given the speed and limitations of the data plans.