MobileX (Now Out of) Beta

Hey @zfighter and welcome!

I don’t know how long it generally takes Walmart to add new merchandise to its brick and mortar stores but, for what it’s worth, the announcement of MobileX’s distribution agreement with Walmart is only a week old.

Meanwhile, MobileX SIMs are available online at Walmart and directly from MobileX. There’s no difference whether one buys the SIM at Walmart or from MobileX directly.

Yes, I’ve tested this scenario. On iPhone, things (including WiFi calling, SMS over WiFi and MMS over WiFi) typically just work. With iPhone, there is just one manufacturer (Apple) involved.

There is one caveat with MobileX (and other providers using Verizon’s network that lack their own Apple carrier bundle). Verizon locks out manual APN entry on iPhone, so one needs a workaround to set the correct APN. The workaround is installing a configuration profile (easy) provided by MobileX. One needs to trust MobileX hasn’t built anything nefarious into their configuration profile. They haven’t but Apple will throw up a warning about that.

If one is sufficiently paranoid and knows what they’re doing, they could build their own configuration profile using Apple Configurator on a Mac. It isn’t necessary. I’ve analyzed MobileX’s configuration profile using Apple Configurator and there’s no cause for concern.

Android is a different ballgame because there are multiple manufacturers, multiple variants of Android and Google all involved.

Wow, that is interesting about the APN. I recently switched from Android to an iPhone XR, mainly because it was free from a relative, but also because WiFi calling and texting worked so flawlessly, and still does after transitioning to Boost as far as I can tell. It reminds me of how seamless it was on Republic before Dish (but without the WiFi/Cell handover, I suppose).

I think I’ve only ever gone so far as to manually enter APN values (and perhaps some others) into a rando-brand Android phone (Doogee), which I got from a friend when Republic switched to Dish (long story).

Anyway, is the APN the same for all iPhones typically? Also, once acquired through the app, is it something that can be AirDropped from one iPhone to another or transferred to a PC, then to another iPhone over USB? Or does iOS have it locked up tight? Most people would probably find my reasons for asking odd, but if you so choose to indulge me, I’d greatly appreciate it.

The iPhone experience tends to be a much more homogenous one across carriers because Apple controls both the hardware and the software. There are advantages to the “walled garden”. One can get pretty close to that experience on Android with Google’s Pixels but other manufacturers are a wild card.

APNs are network and sometimes carrier specific. In the case of MobileX, the standard Verizon network APN does not work. In the case of Republic Wireless by DISH/Boost Infinite, the standard AT&T APN does work, so particularly with iPhone there is no need to fiddle with APNs.

Additionally, generally, with Androids it is when necessary possible to adjust APNs manually. Manually adjusting APNs, however, is not magic and won’t always solve lack of feature support such as WiFi calling and text messaging on some Androids.

On iPhone, Apple sets the phone’s APNs via its carrier bundle. MobileX does not have its own carrier bundle because buying iPhones from Apple at wholesale for retail sale is a requirement for an Apple carrier bundle.

So, MobileX relies on Verizon’s carrier bundle, which sets the default Verizon APN that cannot be manually modified. Use of a configuration profile works around the inability to manually edit the default Verizon APN on iPhone.

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Do you know if it’s possible to transfer that APN from an iPhone to a PC over USB, for the purpose of transferring to another iPhone? Or perhaps Air Drop from it from one iPhone to another? In other words, is the APN, once acquired through the MobileX app, a file you can access on the device to copy to another device?

APNs themselves are settings not a file per se. It might be possible to move the configuration file from one device to another but why bother? Why not simply download the configuration file directly via the MobileX app on whatever iOS device one intended to use with MobileX service?

I will download the app and APN on my wife’s iPhone, but as a…personal experiment, I’m trying to be as minimal as possible when it comes to my phone usage. I remove most of the default apps, except for what I consider bare essentials: phone, messages, contacts, mail, calendar, maps, that kind of thing. I’m not signed into an Apple ID and I’m trying to ensure the phone is never associated with one.

About a month back I reached out to MobileX support to see if it was possible to set up the app on a device separate from the actual phone I’m using. They said I should be okay to use a separate device for for that purpose. I suppose I’ll have to just give it all a try.

MobileX has added an IMEI check tool to its website:

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An interesting podcast with MobileX (and original Boost Mobile well before DISH) founder Peter Adderton:

Here are 27 reviews collected by Walmart. Looks to me like an all-or-nothing prospect depending on phone and skill level.

https://www.walmart.com/reviews/product/2614075912

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I like very much like what MobileX is doing. That said, the idea of paying only for the data one uses isn’t exactly brand new. :slight_smile:

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MobileX is now selling phones, albeit not necessarily the latest models, online:

The Androids are new devices. The small selection of iPhones are pre-owned.

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