After getting off to a rough start, Republic Wireless now offers one of the most compelling price points for a smartphone in America.
Here's how it works: You buy a $299 Moto X that runs Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) and has a 4.7-inch screen, 10MP rear-facing camera, and 16GBs of memory. Once you buy the phone, you get unlimited calling, texting, and data each month for $25. (Unlimited talk and text -- with no data -- is available for $10 a month.)
My review of Republic Wireless
Everything you do on the Moto X is routed over wifi when possible. If you're out and about, your activity goes out over the Sprint cellular network. Interestingly enough, I find the Republic Wireless experience to be flawless when I'm on wifi. The call quality is great and the data is lightning fast.
The problem comes when I'm *not* on wifi and I'm on the Sprint network -- which probably says more about their network than about the phone. When I'm on the cell network, sometimes I place a call and it just keeps ringing and ringing, or the person I'm calling can't hear me. But that's an intermittent thing. (Check to see what the coverage is like in your area.)
All said, I'd give Republic Wireless a grade of B plus to A minus.
Speaking of saving money, the tech writers have been very fond of another phone called the Moto G. The Moto G is a non-contract phone with 4.5-inch screen that's available for $179 through Amazon and other retailers.
Getting the Moto G lets you be a free agent and go to any GSM carrier (like AT&T, T-Mobile, and many of the discounters you've heard me talk about.) You just pop in a SIM card and voila…that's the service you're on.