The best high-speed internet providers of 2019
Discover what high-speed internet options fit your needs
What is considered a fast internet speed?
The Federal Communications Commission sets 25 Mbps as the minimum for broadband download speeds, but if you want “fast” internet, you’ll likely want a plan with speeds higher than that. While 25 Mbps is suitable for many online activities such as streaming TV, gaming online and downloading music, you won’t consistently get those speeds with a 25 Mbps plan.
There are many factors affecting your internet speeds, such as peak usage times, number of connected devices and using Wi-Fi. A high-speed internet plan is one that can withstand these strains on your connection and still give you plenty of speed for all your online activities.
For most households, high-speed internet with download speeds of 100 Mbps will give everyone the speeds needed to engage a variety of online activities at the same time. Higher speeds, like the 1,000 Mbps max speeds offered with gig internet plans, will give you even more of a speed buffer so you can almost always count on a fast connection.
What’s a fast upload speed?
The FCC minimum for broadband upload speeds is 3 Mbps. Upload speeds are generally lower because most online activities — streaming, gaming, browsing the web — require downloading data.
Upload speeds come into play when making phone or video calls over the internet and uploading files, such as videos to YouTube or photos to social media. Fast upload speeds enable you to perform these tasks without much wait or buffering. Upload speeds of 10 Mbps and higher could be considered fast.
Fastest internet speeds offered by the top ISPs
|Provider||Plan||Max advertised download speed||Starting price*|
|Internet 1000||1,000 Mbps||$90/mo.|
|Fiber Gigabit||1,000 Mbps||$65/mo.|
|FiOS 500/500||500 Mbps||$150/mo.|
|Internet 1 Gig||1,000 Mbps||$69.99/mo.|
|Internet 1 Gig||940 Mbps||$74.99/mo.|
|Internet GIG||940 Mbps||$104.99/mo.|
|Internet 1 Gig Unlimited Data||940 Mbps||$125/mo.|
|Fios Gigabit Connection||940 Mbps||$79.99/mo.|
|Kinetic Gig||1,000 Mbps||$75/mo.|
|Gigabit Pro||2,000 Mbps||$299.95/mo.|
*Pricing per month plus taxes for length of contract. Additional fees and terms may apply. Pricing varies by location and availability. All prices subject to change at any time. May or may not be available based on service address. Speeds may vary. As of 06/20/19.
How do I find high-speed internet options near me?
Start with a search of available internet providers in your area. Enter your ZIP code in our search tool at the top of the page or click the “Shop providers” button at the bottom of this section to find high-speed internet providers near you.
On our results page, you’ll find a list of high-speed internet providers near you. Look for the “MAX SPEED” under each provider to get an idea of what speeds may be available in your area.
To shop high-speed plans from specific internet providers near you, call the number listed or click “Order online.” We’ll help you find and compare fast internet plans for your home at no extra cost to you.
What cities have the fastest internet speeds?
According to speedtest.net, the average download speed in the U.S. in 2018 Q2-Q3 was 96.25 Mbps. Cities with the fastest speeds were those with access to major cable and fiber-optic internet providers. Here are the top 20 cities with the fastest average download speeds, according to speedtest.net.
|City||Avg download speed||City||Avg download speed|
|Kansas City, MO||159.19||Jersey City, NJ||129.11|
|Austin, TX||143.66||Charlotte, NC||128.85|
|Lubbock, TX||141.48||North Las Vegas, NV||128.69|
|Raleigh, NC||137.70||Aurora, CO||127.99|
|San Antonio, TX||133.86||Chesapeake, VA||127.27|
|Lincoln, NE||132.89||Irvine, CA||124.84|
|Henderson, NV||131.63||Gilbert, AZ||120.44|
|San Francisco, CA||131.56||New York, NY||119.59|
|Boston, MA||131.05||Jacksonville, FL||119.5|
|Durham, NC||129.65||Nashville, TN||118.52|
Check your internet speeds with this speed test. If you’re ready for a speed upgrade, call to shop plans from available high-speed internet providers near you.
Is high-speed internet getting faster?
Internet providers aren’t necessarily offering faster internet, but they are making their fastest plans available in more areas.
The largest cable internet providers — Cox, Spectrum and Xfinity — already offer gig speeds or higher in many of their main service areas. Currently, these speeds are higher than the average household needs, so it is unlikely that cable providers will offer much faster speeds in the near future.
Fiber-optic internet providers — including AT&T, CenturyLink and Verizon — are expanding their networks to bring gig internet to more areas. Additionally, Google Fiber serves select areas of more than 20 cities nationwide, but does not appear to be actively expanding their network. Like cable internet, fiber-optic internet is capable of delivering speeds much faster than the average household requires, so major speed increases are not likely anytime soon.
Satellite internet, on the other hand, promises some major speed and latency improvements in coming years. While HughesNet and Viasat already offer broadband speeds in select areas, companies including SpaceX and OneWeb hope to make satellite internet even faster. Using low-orbiting satellites, these companies aim to offer satellite internet with speeds and latency rivaling cable and fiber-optic internet services.
Frequently asked questions about high-speed internet
Download speeds of 100 Mbps and higher are fast enough for streaming in 4K, gaming online, downloading files and more on multiple devices at the same time. While 100 Mbps is often fast enough for the average household, faster speeds ranging from 200 to 2,000 Mbps are available in select areas.
Currently, Xfinity offers the fastest residential internet service with download speeds up to 2,000 Mbps in select areas. Major internet providers with internet speeds ranging from up to 940 to 1,000 Mbps include AT&T, CenturyLink, Cox, Mediacom, Spectrum, Verizon Fios and Windstream.
According to Statista, Singapore has the fastest mean download speeds at 60.39 Mbps. Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Romania rounded off the top five nations. In comparison, the United States ranked 20th with a mean download speed of 25.86 Mbps.
Last updated 06/20/19.