Bonnie Cha

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Republic Wireless Finally Gets a Modern Smartphone With Addition of Moto X

Republic Wireless, the MVNO carrier that offers unlimited smartphone plans for just $19 a month, announced today that it is adding the Motorola X to its lineup in November.

MotoX 11

The cost for Moto’s latest flagship Android smartphone will be $299 without contract. That’s a big savings compared to the $600 unsubsidized price offered by other carriers and Motorola itself. The addition of the Moto X is significant for Republic Wireless, which till now has only offered the older, lower-end handsets like the Motorola Defy XT.

Launched last November, Republic Wireless employs a hybrid technology that uses a Wi-Fi connection whenever possible for calls and data, and then switches to Sprint’s network when out of range. When I reviewed the service, I found that call quality wasn’t all that great over Wi-Fi, and it couldn’t seamlessly transfer calls from Wi-Fi to cellular.

The carrier said that the Moto X is optimized for better voice quality on Wi-Fi and cellular calls, and that it can now seamlessly hand off calls between the two technologies.

Republic Wireless said, for now, it is only offering the black and white version of the Moto X, but it hopes to add the customization options in the future.

In addition to the Moto X, the carrier revealed that it will introduce several new cellphone plans in November. These include:

  • A $5 monthly plan that includes unlimited talk, text and data over Wi-Fi only.
  • A $10 monthly plan that gets you unlimited talk and text over Wi-Fi and cellular, and unlimited data on Wi-Fi.
  • A $25 monthly plan for unlimited talk, text and data over Wi-Fi and 3G.
  • A $40 monthly plan that includes unlimited talk, text and data over Wi-Fi and 4G.

The carrier will continue to offer its $19 a month plan for those customers who purchase the Motorola Defy XT; otherwise, you will have to sign up for one of the new plans. A specific release date for the Moto X and the date the new plans will go into effect were not given at this time.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus