Republic Wireless, the $19 Per Month Android Carrier, Launches New Phone

Republic Wireless, the $19 Per Month Android Carrier, Launches New Phone

Aug 1, 2012

Republic Wireless is an MVNO carrier with an interesting premise: it offers Android phones with unlimited data for $19/month. There’s a couple of catches, of course. One is that there’s a very limited selection of devices: right now, they’re offering the Motorola DEFY XT, which has a 3.7" display, 512 MB of RAM, 1 GHz processor, 1 GB of storage, and it runs on Gingerbread. It’s not the most impressive piece of hardware.

But the second catch is related to the limited hardware: see, Republic Wireless wants users to rely on wifi networks as the primary data source, using mobile data only as a backup. The phone is set up to use services like text messaging and phone calls over wifi, using what they’re calling “Hybrid Calling technology” to operate.

While many MVNOs generally operate in relative anonymity due to not having the kinds of marketing budgets that the big boys have, Republic Wireless’ low-cost data plans could be intriguing to users. The $19/month offer with the DEFY XT is currently in a public “beta” through their website.