23
Sep
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Republic Wireless got some well-deserved headlines last week when they announced that they would start selling the nearly brand-new Moto X on its hybrid mobile-WiFi network for $300 unsubsidized. But if that's still too expensive for you, it looks like the company intends to offer an even cheaper option, the Motorola DVX. A leaked slide for the wireless roadmap of Bandwidth.com (Republic's parent company) shows the phone coming out sometime in October.

nexusae0_Future-DVX

The photo above was posted to the Bandwidth.com company Flickr stream this weekend, clearly showing the release of the Moto X on Republic, a price drop on the DEFY XT (the company's primary phone so far) coming up Thursday, and the Motorola DVX releasing on a "TBD" date in October. The photo was subsequently edited to remove most of the information in the slide, but a tipster sent us the original unmodified version.

The Motorola DVX (model number XT1032) has passed through the FCC filing process for release in the United States, though that's not always a definite indicator of upcoming availability. A Reddit user found stock pages on an overseas website indicating sub-$200 prices for unlocked models, and another found a photo of the phone's plastic shell. You can't tell much about the hardware and there are no specifications available beyond 3G-only radio bands, but the photo definitely indicates that the DVX follows the curvy design language found on the Moto X. This phone would almost certainly be manufactured in China, unlike the Texas-born X.

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With relatively cheap phones and downright shocking prices on service plans, Republic Wireless is making good on their promise to shake up the domestic carrier market. If they can keep up this kind of momentum, they might just be able to start the paradigm shift they've been talking about since the beta program started.   

Thanks, Anon!

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • jimsis

    Wonder if Google are thinking of expanding into the carrier market? Seems like Republic would be a good candidate for purchasing.

    • Kiltedbear

      Just get an unlocked phone like the Nexus 4 and go to T-mobile or another service that offers a "bring your own device" service. I got the Nexus 4 16 GB for $250 and I pay T-mobile $30/mo for 100 4G minutes and unlimited text and data.

      • kabloink

        Depends on your data needs. I seldom use more than 100meg a month due to being on wifi most of the time and not using the phone when running around. For me, the announced Republic Wireless $10 "no data" plan looks interesting.

        That said, no way would I pay $199 for their current phone.

        • unsivilaudio

          The Defy XT? I thought they dropped it to $99.

          • Fred

            It will drop to $99 on thursday

        • Fred

          So wait till the Moto X comes and jump on Republic. That's what I'm doing

      • Jef Franklin

        That must be an old plan because now they want $50 for 500M of data with unlimited talk and text. They are no where near RW's $40 for unlimited talk and text with 5Gig of data and 100M of data while roaming.

        • Tony Fyffe

          My T-Mo $30 plan is 100 minutes, 5Gb of HSPA+ 4G data and I found it through a walkthru from CNET. It's one of T-Mo's "bring your own device/buy a SIM" prepay plans. It's perfect for me since I've had unlocked Nexus's since the N1. I don't talk a lot, and when I need to, I just use Gmail for business calls or Voxer for friends (the VOIP apps I've tried are terrible... I can hear the other person because speeds are good DOWN, but they can never hear me due to the slower speeds UP).

          I've been reading that the Sprint network that RW piggybacks off of is super slow... I don't live in a Wimax 4G area, so I'll try the $25 RW 3G plan at first... if it's too painful a transition to make, I'll just downgrade to $5 wifi-only and use my T-Mo data as persistent hotspot (a $15 fee).

          • Jef Franklin

            It can be slow depending on where you live. They are behind on tower upgrades compared to other carriers. The upside is that they are now upgrading both capacity and speed nation wide. Still waiting for those upgrades in my area. But the 3G in my area is not horrible so we may not be high on their priority list.

    • Michael Ward

      Yeah, that would he awesome. Only problem is that they rely on the sprint network, which sucks and is cdma. Hopefully if purchased it would be switched a proper gsm carrier.

      • http://www.google.com/profiles/moneta.mace Mace Moneta

        Republic plans include unlimited no additional charge roaming. You're not limited to the Sprint network.

        • Ray Gray

          So are your implying that their cdma phones roam on gsm networks? If not the comment is irrelevant

          • ncdave

            No, but they sometimes roam on Verizon. (It's kind of hit-or-miss.)

        • Tony Fyffe

          I do believe that the RW site states that they use only the Sprint Network, as they are basically a "Wi-Fi first" Mobile Virtual Network Operator. While a Sprint customer may benefit from roaming on VZW's CDMA network, I doubt that Sprint has any authority to allow someone to whom they are selling their spectrum to roam onto anyone else's network. They even link you to a coverage map for Sprint.

          • http://www.google.com/profiles/moneta.mace Mace Moneta

            From: https://community.republicwireless.com/docs/DOC-1124

            How much does domestic roaming cost?
            Domestic roaming is free.

            Republic Wireless has roaming agreements with many other CDMA carriers (both national and regional).

          • Tony Fyffe

            Your link doesn't support your claim. It says you can use WiFi anywhere or insert an international phone card. International phone cards aren't "roaming," international phone cards must be purchased along with a service plan.

            If you're trying to underscore the fact that roaming is free, try this link: http://www.republicwireless.com/how-republic-works
            that clearly states RW uses the Sprint network.

            Contrary to my prior assumption, the coverage map provided by RW here: http://www.republicwireless.com/coverage-map
            indicates that RW may roam onto Sprint's roaming partners' networks, but through Sprint.

            I'm not sure how or why you're concluding that RW has so many agreements with so many carriers. They report they have an agreement with Sprint.

            Additionally, the "4G" that comes with their plan is only Sprint's Wimax version, so don't hold out hopes for LTE as a result of these other "agreements." You'll get 4G data slower than T-Mo's HSPA+.

            I'm considering the $5 plan with a Verizon 4G LTE hotspot. That could be sweet... perhaps cumbersome, but sweet.

          • http://www.google.com/profiles/moneta.mace Mace Moneta

            *Domestic* roaming is free. The term domestic refers to the United States. There is no international roaming, but WiFi calls work internationally.

    • sc4fpse

      If Republic Wireless wasn't a CDMA MNVO, *maybe*. But since they use Sprint's CDMA network, that's a big "hell no."

      • Jef Franklin

        When people start to experience the LTE upgrades they will not speak so harshly.

  • Bill

    If one does not have either t-mobile or sprint choices get more limited.

  • 121234user

    If you look really close at the image, they ship the Moto X devices to reporters on Oct. 28, and open the new online store on Wed November 6.

    • ZippityDoDah

      You must be a Republic employee, or someone very close to a Republic employee, because the angle at which that photo was taken doesn't allow for a legible view of dates. Even when you click on the image to enlarge it you don't see those dates. But thanks for going against the grain and revealing these dates that the RW public relations department is trying to hold close to their chest.

  • WTJ

    Did everyone miss the $300 Moto X no plan just straight out the gate price. This is the price the Moto X should have been. Is this phone crippled in some way because if it isn't I am willing to signup give them the money and then drop the service and use the phone on T-mobile. Still looking through the site to see if you have to give the equipment back.

    • Fred

      Why would you go back to T-Mobile when the Republic prices are so good. $25 or $40 amonth depending on the plan you choose.

      • WTJ

        I don't plan to leave T-Mobile as I already have a similar family rate just want the almost half price discount on the phone :)

        • Fred

          You're getting unlimited data for those prices? Wow that's impressive well done. I'm switching to republic and taking their $10 plan with the Moto X

          • WTJ

            Long term grandfathered in rate :) If I wasn't I would be seriously looking into this company as a provider. I love those who innovate like this.

        • Tony Fyffe

          I know you haven't had a chance to read my earlier reply yet, but I want to emphasize that one cannot use this RW phone with T-mobile.
          There are 2 major types of radio frequencies used for cell service in the US at this time:

          CDMA (Verizon, Sprint, Cricket, and the MVNO's that piggyback off them), and
          GSM (AT&T, T-Mo, and the MVNO's that piggyback off them).

          An unlocked GSM phone can use a SIM from AT&T, T-Mo, etc, and an unlocked CDMA phone can use the CDMA carriers. Sometimes, you can get a carrier to "carrier unlock" your device, but it won't work on the other type of network. For instance, with my unlocked GSM Galaxy Nexus, I've used Cincinnati Bell, T-Mo, Net10, iWireless, and now T-Mo again with a different plan. All GSM networks.

          Some "world phones" do include both types of radios. This one does not. If someone wants a Moto X, they need to choose either a CDMA version or a GSM version.

    • ncdave

      The current Republic Wireless phone is the Motorola Defy XT557D, and it has a special customized ROM that apparently prevents you from using it on any other network. I'm pretty sure that the Moto X will also have this, when it comes out.
      In fact, Republic Wireless won't even let you activate a used & fully paid-for Republic Wireless phone on THEIR OWN network! Effectively, all Republic Wireless phones are "blacklisted" as soon as they no longer have active service.
      Republic Wireless won't even reactivate YOUR OWN used phone, if you let your OWN contract lapse.
      In fact, even if you NEVER let your contract lapse, if you have an old Republic Wireless phone that you're no longer using, and you lose or break your current Republic Wireless phone, they won't even let you go back to using the old one.
      The ONLY way to get Republic Wireless service is to buy a new phone from Republic Wireless when you sign up for the service.
      Obviously, they don't advertise this "feature."
      If you find this hard to believe, trust me, I'm not making it up. I wish I were.

      In the discussion forums, Republic Wireless has said that this situation is temporary, and due to technical issues, but they've made no promises about which century will see it change.

      • Max Fource

        I'm going to have to back ncdave up on this one. I've been a customer since the day they came online, back in Nov. 2011. Alot of issues were raised by members back then, such as: BYOD, when? Reactivation, when? Seamless handoff, when? MMS, when? and a bunch of other issues that I can't readily remember now. But the point being, this is a company that makes alot of promises and then just never delivers on them. Their favored and most used tagline is always something with later in it: "Later this year, later on, later this quarter, etc" Or something that conveys the idea of later: "We're working on that. It's on the horizon. It's in the works. That's just around the corner. That's coming." Anyway, my best suggestion to anyone thinking about giving RW a try, DON'T. Just stick with an MVNO that uses the big boys as their backbone, preferably AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon. RW isn't the only gig in town that has super discounted rates. Many other plans now can get you below $50/month, and without the stress and headache of having to deal with experimental VoIP software that RW just can't seem to get right, even after 2 years of being in business as a tech company.

      • hontoz

        Actually, they are working on being able to re-activate phones, and will have it out before the Moto X phones are available (dont have link, was from laura.s on the forums)

        • ncdave

          I sure hope it happens! But we've been waiting nearly a year, so far.
          However, I recently read that someone who ruined his Defy XT 557D phone by dropping it in the toilet got a used replacement from Republic Wireless for just $50 + shipping and taxes.

          That's a good price! However, it also proves that Republic Wireless does have the ability to reactivate used phones, if they feel like it. They just won't do it for you or me.

          • Max Fource

            Again, I'm going to have to side with ncdave on all of this. @hontoz, if you are a newish customer, you best hold on for the ride of your life - and not in a good way either. RW is nothing but a pack of BS'ers, seriously! As I've mentioned above and as ncdave is further alluding to - RW will tell you what you want to hear and string you along, sometimes for YEARS! The reactivation issue was broached about 6 months into their venture, back in May 2012, as people started asking about reactivating phones then. Back then, just like now, you got a lot of lip service from RW about how reactivation was a feature that they were working on and wanted to bring to the customers. Well, here it is, almost 2 years later and there is STILL no reactivation. I understand people are drawn to RW for the low price but it's all for naught when the service is crippled with the lack of even-the-most-basic features that other carriers provide. RW is a company that is truly trying to figure out how much they can get away with before customers start to baulk and leave, en masse...again, like they did back in Spring 2013. And them raising prices by a massive 30% for the SAME service? Nope, they're not going to be seeing droves of people flock to them anytime soon.

            And ncdave has pretty much nailed the reactivation issue but most people don't think beyond the obvious. If RW can replace someone's defective phone with another phone, and transfer that person's cell number and service to that replacement phone, then they CLEARLY have the ability NOW to reactivate phones. Again, I'm waving the BS flag, as you should. This is a poser of a company. Did you see the employee review of RW over at GlassDoor. Basically, the employee outted them for 'trying to be something that they're not'. Now THAT sounds like a credible statement given their current track record and the comments they receive across the net from various websites.

    • Tony Fyffe

      You can't use a phone with CDMA radios on a GSM network, even if the network operator unlocked you from themselves.

      If you want to use a Moto X with T-Mo, you'll have to either buy the T-Mo version for $599 or the unlocked developer version for $649.

  • ncdave

    But will it have a replaceable battery and a micro-SD slot? The glued-in, non-replaceable battery is the fatal flaw of the Moto X; nobody who plans to keep their phone for more than 1.5 years should consider such a device.

  • Fernando

    Here's a link for 19 off your 1st month!
    http://referrals.republicwireless.com/a/clk/XtJvH

  • cuchut

    i wouldn't pay for that price if made in China

  • Max Fource

    Republic Wireless says they WON'T compete.

    Users and potential customers have posted to their forums and Facebook page asking about the recently-made-public information that large carriers are now reducing the price of the Moto X to $99. Republic Wireless has responded that they will NOT be lowering their $299 price tag. What Republic has done, instead, is try to put out a scare tactic about how the lowered price locks you into a contract. (when you have to resort to scare tactics to get people to sign up for your service, that should be a clear sign NOT to use that service) Republic raising their price to $40 to have 4G service with the Moto X puts them on par with other MVNO's. The attraction of $19/month is gone! Plus, Republic is locking customers in anyway. You only get to choose from black or white, no cool colors and no access to MotoMaker so you can customize the phone the way YOU want it. Also, it has been revealed that the bootloader is locked down and they have severely modified the internal coding of the phone to work with ONLY their in-house VoIP servers. If you ever leave Republic, you're stuck with a $300 plastic brick on your desk. Not good!