Oh, hell. FreedomPop might really be onto something this time. The company best known for doling out 500MB of free mobile data per month to hotspots, iPods and home routers will step up its game later this summer with a free phone service for Android users... with a few caveats, that is. To get by on the cheap, you'll need to make do with a relatively scant 200 voice minutes and 500MB of mobile data in order to avoid overage fees, but to FreedomPop's credit, it'll include unlimited texting as part of the mix. What's more, if you happen to go over your minute allotment, you'll be charged a rather reasonable $9.99, which brings unlimited voice to the table. As you might've suspected, data overages are the biggest caveat to FreedomPop's service, which can cost between $10 and $20 per gigabyte.
The service will operate over Sprint's network, which brings access to EV-DO and WiMAX, and also leverages VoIP for calls. While it won't be available at launch, FreedomPop tells us that LTE may eventually worm its way into the offering. Sadly, the company isn't ready to discuss which Android phones will be offered (or at what price points). As another sticking point, there's a chance that number portability won't make it into the beta launch, but FreedomPop assures us that it's in the works. Even with the constraints and risk of overages, it seems that FreedomPop could still be a workable (and very inexpensive) solution if you lean on WiFi for most of your data usage. In fact, company reps tell us that 50 percent of its customers are able to get by without incurring overages or monthly fees. Think you have the self-restraint to be among them?