ROK Mobile is now available to the general public. The service, which was initially invite-only, now lets anyone with a credit card sign up.
ROK offers a single plan priced at $49.99 which includes unlimited calling, messaging and data together with ROK's signature feature, unlimited music streaming and downloading. ROK runs on either the Sprint and T-Mobile networks depending on the phone used.
ROK's music service lets users listen to personalized music streams and create their own playlists from a library of over 20 million songs. In addition to streaming, ROK users can download music for off line use but can not transfer downloaded music to another device. It's not clear if downloaded music will still play if the user cancels ROK service.
ROK lets users activate a limited number of Sprint and T-Mobile phone models (list) which have been tested and approved for use with the service. The list of Sprint devices includes several, like the iPhone 5c and 5s, LG G2, G3 and G Flex, Motorola Moto X and Samsung Galaxy S5 and Note3, that are blacklisted by Sprint from activation on MVNOs because they were released less than a year ago. I'd be very surprised if ROK can actually activate these Blacklisted models. The site also has conflicting information as to whether iPhones can be activated or not. The eligible device list includes Sprint's iPhone 4, 4s and 5, as well as the 5c and 5s, but elsewhere on the site it says iPhone support is coming soon.
ROK also sells phones through a third party distributor. The following models are currently available:
- Samsung Galaxy S III 16GB in Blue $293.99
- Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB in Black or White $403.99
- Samsung Galaxy s5 16GB in Black, White, Blue or Gold $613.99
There's no indication on the ROK site as to which network, T-Mobile or Sprint, the phones they sell use.
ROK charges $10.01 for standard shipping on phone orders. SIM shipping appears to be free but there's a $25 activation fee. There are also additional monthly fees and taxes which vary by state. In California taxes and fees are $6.24/month.
Even with fees, less than $60/month is an unbeatable price for unlimited talk, text, data and music. Of course it remains to be seen just how unlimited ROK service is. ROK's terms of service page says that ROK has the right to cap or throttle the data of anyone whose usage impacts "impacts the wireless network or ROK Mobile resources". Hotspot usage is specifically forbidden. ROK's terms are similar to other mobile operators and MVNOs, what really counts is how strictly they are enforced.
I've asked ROK to clarify whether they can actually activate recent Sprint phones and which network the phones they sell use and will update this post when I know more.
New MVNO ROK Mobile to Launch July 4 With Unlimited Streaming Music, Talk, Text and Data for $49.99/Month