FreedomPop is an unusual wireless provider which offers plans starting as low as, well… free. You’ll have to pay something if you want anything more than the most basic service, but it’s an interesting option for folks on a tight budget who can use WiFi to make up for the service’s less-than-stellar network coverage.

Up until recently, FreedomPop offered WiFi hotspots and cheap, refurbished versions of brand name smartphones. But now FreedomPop is launching its own smartphone for the first time.

The FreedomPop V7 is a dual SIM Android phone that’s available in the UK and Spain. FreedomPop plans to bring it to the US soon.

UK customers can pick up the FreedomPop V7 for £59 (about $72) during a launch special, but the phone is said to have a list price of £200 ($244).

It seems to be selling for 200 Euros in Spain already.

The phone has just 1GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 processor. In other words, it has the kind of specs you’d expect from a cheap phone.

But cheap phones in 2017 are a lot better than they were a few years ago, and some of the other features don’t look so bad:

  • 5 inch, 1280 x 720 pixel IPS display
  • microSD card slot for up to 32GB of removable storage
  • 13MP rear camera with auto-focus

The phone has a VGA front-facing camera and a removable 2,100 mAh battery.

FreedomPop’s basic free service varies from country to country:

  • UK: 200 minutes talk, 200 text messages, 200MB data
  • Spain: 100 minutes talk, 300 text messages, 200MB data

But in both regions you can pay extra for more talk time, more SMS messages, and more data.

in the UK includes 200 minutes of talk, 200 text messages, and 200MB of data, although you can pay extra for up to 2GB of data and unlimited talk and text.

via FreedomPop 

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4 replies on “Budget wireless provider FreedomPop launches its first smartphone”

  1. Freedompop is such a scam. One has to be very savvy to be able to go free. They enable plenty of services on your account and it is very hard to cancel them. If you cancel some, it secretly enables others, what you have to notice and cancel. And then you have to keep a balance on your account, and that balance expires over time… I understand that they have to make money somehow, but this is a way too sneaky…

    1. Agreed. Stay as far away from them as you can. It’s unfortunate that Intel (via its VC arm) funded them sometime in the past.

    2. Offtopic, kinda:

      My start with them was extremely rocky and scammy. I ordered and paid for a phone through their website. After some activity the phone magically became backordered – for 9 months. On month 10, I started seeing charges on the account. Yes, they were charging me $19 monthly for service I wasn’t using. Not only that, but they charged me $19 twice in the space of 1 month. That got me ticked so I called them. Thankfully, the rep really and truly fixed the situation, quite painlessly too. She removed all the charges from my account. I told her to cancel the phone as well, which she did.

      I decided I wasn’t going to give up, so I got a FP phone elsewhere (Newegg) [which I might add, I didn’t know I could do until I noticed FP phones being sold elsewhere by this time) and started the service, I haven’t had any issues since. The phone is a Galaxy S3 so it’s pokey and a bit slow by today’s standards but it works in most areas. As everyone should know, it uses your data alotment while out and about to make calls. Once you’re out of data or minutes, it tries to charge your account. I’ve never had it try to charge mine because I’ve never had my family hit the quota.

      I was able to put an Amex Gift Certificate card in that has 10c on it, that way if they ever tried to charge for more than that, it’d be denied. When that card “dies”, I will probably create a temp CC and put a few bucks in. So far though, I haven’t had payment problems. I mainly give the phone to my family who visit from overseas so they’re independent, not having to borrow our cell phones or buy a prepaid line for the short time they are here. It’s worked well so far. Before FP I had to depend on Virgin Mobile which made it easy to start and stop service, but would have to pay per use or for a small expensive pool of minutes.

      I’m thinking of selling this phone, if I can and moving to their GSM plan now but again, it depends on how easy (or hard) they make it. I also am with TMobile and got the free line Promo so I may just get rid of FP altogether.

      On Topic:

      There’s really no way this phone is worth it. It’s not a value, whatsoever at the list price. The launch price sounds way more in line with reality. With 1GB of RAM and the cheesy older processor, people can get much better phones for much less (than the list price) from Honor, Blu and a host of manufacturers or get tried and true phones that are recertified from the top brands. $72 sounds just about right for the price of the device.

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