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For those considering Ring Plus or Republic be cautious!! And other cheap plan options.

On a recent thread that had 22 replies-titled "Scratch's Recent Announcement? No more Free Service?" many mentioned RingPlus and Republic Wireless but Caveat Emptor-in the Ring Plus plans although they DO have a basic free plan the other "so called" free plans have an auto top off feature if you exceed your "free" minutes, I emailed them to ask for more details such as " do you receive a warning if you are about to reach the limit" (and to post the answer in their faqs so others could know also) and Republic has a cheap plan of unlimited talking or texting for $10 and says you can buy the data plan separately but couldn't find that info on the plan page as to how much that it would be! They also have a rebate program so it makes it better than Ting, whose charges can get high if you DO start using it a lot, but there is no mention on their website if there's a maximum they will refund. Nobody mentioned Freedom Pop, I tried their at home device and somehow they said my home location couldn't get the Sprint cell towers so didn't try their phone, one friend of mine didn't have problems with their phone, another could never get it activated, I also think they start charging you when you go over the free amount, so again, wonder if they have a warning you would get before you exceed your free limit. What's terribly annoying is that it's difficult to just read their website, you have to give a lot of personal info just to get on their site.

For light users, Ting, just charges you for just what you use, but they have this irritating fact that they charge just to use their service even if you don't make a call or text or use their data (they DO have excellent customer service that you don't have to navigate a phone tree for 10 minutes yelling live advisor which most free/low cost services do NOT have!). Walmart/Virgin phone had something like that and they INCLUDED mins with THEIR minimum charge but the super intelligent (not!-hey it's o.k as I shop there too) customers who bought the phone, couldn't understand how it worked, so they stopped selling their phone.

If you have a low enough income you can have a lifeline phone, I have one through Assurance Wireless, they CALL it a smartphone, it's not, it's like their paylo phone where you can see your emails but not get any apps! I used the lifeline phone when not on wifi to make my calls but the poor quality makes it difficult to understand each other but that's why some people say of the SW phones. And with all this class action talk is anyone initiating anything (hmm...wonder if SW will monitor if someone DOES put something up about that!

Evagoblog

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Everyone's needs are going to be different. The reason one should consider switching to Republic, RingPlus or any other service provider is because they would offer more value to your specific situation. It seems the old Scratch model offered much more value for more people than their new model will. Of course not all the details of the new model are entirely clear to me yet, so we'll see.

In regards to Republic Wireless check out https://republicwireless.com/plans/ and scroll left. Their website is confusing, but basically you pay a base $10 for unlimited voice/text over either wifi or cell. If you want data on the go you can purchase 500 MB of data for $7.50 (plus some additional taxes/fees, just like with the Scratch passes). Any data you don't use is prorated and refunded back at the end of the billing cycle. This means you only end up paying for what you use, which is really nice. And if you never purchase a data pass you're only paying a little over $10/month for unlimited voice and text (I hope I'm wrong, but it looks like with Scratch a little over $10/month will only get you unlimited voice, but no texting outside of WiFi). The cost per GB is also cheaper with RW at $15 (with Scratch it ranges from $25-$40), so if you're planning to purchase a pass every month RW likely holds more value for you. However, you have to pay a minimum of $10/month, whereas with Scratch you can pay nothing until you need it. Therefore if you live off of Wi-Fi for the most part (and for example use hangouts/voice for calls) and just have the occasional need for a pass when out and about Scratch may still offer more value to you than RW. And of course you don't have to purchase another phone if you already have a Scratch phone. Just like Scratch, Republic requires that you use one of their phones.

Ting seems attractive if you're looking to use a combination of voice, text and/or data, but in a lot of cases Scratch probably still ends up being cheaper. I like Ting's business model, but it really isn't competitive at the lower end ($6 per line for zero use really is a non-starter for me- if that included some voice or text it might be different).

RingPlus is definitely one I would be cautious with, but it does seem like it could be a viable alternative to Scratch for some people, depending on needs. You need to know what your getting into though. For example they have this radio ring feature where you listen to ads and/or music instead of a dial tone when you call someone.

Perry-David van Dillen 0 votes
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Well stated Perry. As stated before, I am a Republic user and I really like it. I will also say that the Community there is so much more active there than here. I am amazed at how little reaction there has been to this change at Scratch. When Republic changed their plan, the Community near blew up. It was quite entertaining.

Stuckin79 0 votes
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