2019 Cox vs. CenturyLink comparison

See how Cox and CenturyLink internet and TV services stack up against each other.

Is Cox or CenturyLink better for you?

We’ve researched Cox and CenturyLink for you so you can easily compare and choose the best provider and services for your home. Depending on where you live, what internet speeds you want and what TV entertainment you prefer, you may find that either Cox or CenturyLink better fits your unique needs.

  • Best for consistent internet pricing: CenturyLink’s Price for Life guarantee lets you keep the same monthly internet service rate as long as you have CenturyLink service, and you don’t have to sign a contract.
  • Best for internet plan variety: Cox offers more standalone internet plans and speeds than CenturyLink with 10 Mbps, 30 Mbps, 100 Mbps, 300 Mbps and 1,000 Mbps plans available.
  • Best customer satisfaction: Cox internet scored slightly higher than CenturyLink over the past three years, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index.

Cox vs. CenturyLink quick comparison

Cox and CenturyLink both offer internet speeds up to 1,000 Mbps where available. Both providers offer no-contract internet plans and the freedom to use your own compatible equipment. While CenturyLink has more availability across the U.S., CenturyLink fiber speeds are only offered in select cities.

  • Available in 18 states
  • Double play bundles starting at $89.99/mo.*
  • Speeds from 10 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps
  • Channel counts from 140+ to 250+
  • No-contract and one-year service terms for internet, two-year contract plans for TV & internet
  • $9.99/mo.* rental fee for Wi-Fi modem

CenturyLink Logo

  • Available in 35 states
  • Double play bundles featuring DIRECTV starting at $80/mo.*
  • Speeds from 3 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps
  • Channel counts from 155+ to 250+
  • No contract for internet or home phone, two-year contract plans with DIRECTV
  • $10/mo.* lease fee for modem or $150 one-time payment

*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. As of 07/08/19.

To learn more about how CenturyLink and Cox stack up, check out a full comparison of their TV plans, internet packages and bundles.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink availability

Cox offers internet, TV and home phone services in select areas of 18 states. CenturyLink offers internet, TV and home phone services in certain regions of 35 states. According to the FCC, CenturyLink is also available in many more households than Cox, covering 16% of the U.S. compared to Cox’s 6.75%.

Regions where the two providers overlap include Las Vegas, Nevada, Phoenix, Arizona, parts of eastern Kansas, the Florida panhandle and other regions.

Areas where service availability differs significantly include southern California, Connecticut, Georgia, Missouri, Minnesota and many other states. For instance, Cox offers services along the southeast coast of Virginia and near Washington, D.C., while Cox offers services throughout central and western Virginia.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink packages

Cox provides cable internet, TV and digital phone packages while CenturyLink offers high-speed DSL internet, home phone and fiber internet plans. If you want a CenturyLink TV package, CenturyLink partners with DIRECTV to offer satellite TV bundles.

Cox gives customers more internet speed package options, but CenturyLink offers more TV package choices through DIRECTV. While Cox standalone TV services cost more than DIRECTV plans, Cox packages offer customers higher savings and lower overall prices when you bundle.

Cox Bronze Duo bundle

  • Starting at $89.99/mo.*
  • Speeds up to 150 Mbps
  • Internet data cap 1 TB/mo.
  • Contour TV 140+ channels
  • Two-year contract required

Bundled savings: $34.99/mo.*

CenturyLink High-Speed Internet + DIRECTV SELECT bundle

  • Starting at $104.99/mo*
  • Speeds up to 80 Mbps
  • Internet data cap 1 TB/mo.
  • DIRECTV SELECT 155+ channels
  • No internet contract required, two-year contract required for TV

Bundled savings: 0/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. As of 07/08/19.

What shoppers should consider in different regions

CenturyLink’s pricing is pretty consistent across the U.S., but the highest speed ranges may not be available depending on your address. Cox doesn’t have as much availability as CenturyLink, but where both providers are available, Cox will likely offer a better package deal.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink internet

Compare speed options based on lowest starting price

ProviderStarting price*Starting speedsFastest speedsData capsIncluded equipmentContractWi-Fi hotspotsBuy now
$19.99/mo.*10 Mbps1,000 Mbps1 TB/mo.None, equipment available to rentNo contract & 1-year term agreements availableAccess to 500,000+ with qualifying plansShop now
CenturyLink Logo
$45/mo.*3 Mbps to 40 Mbps1,000 Mbps1 TB with DSL, no limit with Gigabit None, equipment available to rentNone requiredNot availableShop now

*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. As of 07/08/19.

One thing to note is that Cox gives you the option to get standalone internet plans without a contract. No-contract, standalone internet plans cost slightly more, but even with the higher prices, most Cox internet plans cost less than CenturyLink internet plans with similar speeds. However, CenturyLink’s fastest internet plan comes at a lower price than Cox’s, even though the two plans offer the same speeds, up to 1,000 Mbps.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink cheap internet plans

The cheapest internet plan in your area will likely be a Cox internet plan unless you are looking for gig speeds. If you want speeds up to 1,000 Mbps, CenturyLink offers a better deal plus a Price for Life guarantee.

Overall, Cox offers a higher variety of internet speeds and tends to have lower pricing for comparable speeds.

Cox cheapest internet plan

  • $19.99/mo.* for up to 10 Mbps
  • $1.99/Mbps
  • $9.99/mo.* Panoramic Wi-Fi router rental (optional)
  • $75 professional installation, $20 for self-installation
  • One-year term agreement

CenturyLink cheapest internet plan

  • $45/mo.* for up to 80 Mbps
  • $0.56/Mbps
  • Internet modem lease $10/mo.* (optional)
  • $60 setup and installation fee
  • No monthly term agreement

*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. As of 7/08/19.

If you want to potentially save a little money on your monthly internet costs, both Cox and CenturyLink give you the option to use your own modem and router devices with select plans. Find out which CenturyLink and Cox compatible modems you can use.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink fastest internet plans

Cox and CenturyLink both offer gig speed internet plans. CenturyLink 1 Gbps internet plans cost less than Cox 1 Gbps internet plans.

Cox Gigablast

  • Cox Internet Gigablast – 1,000 Mbps
  • Starting at $119.99/mo.*
  • Fiber internet connection
  • 1 TB/mo. data limit
  • No speed throttling

CenturyLink Gigabit

  • CenturyLink Fiber Internet – 1,000 Mbps
  • Starting at $65/mo.*
  • 1 TB/mo. data limit
  • Fiber internet connection
  • No speed throttling

*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. As of 7/08/19.

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Cox vs. CenturyLink TV

CenturyLink partners with DIRECTV offer internet and TV bundles. DIRECTV is great for sports watchers and gives customers many more channel package choices compared to Cox’s main TV plan, Cox Contour TV.

Cox vs. CenturyLink/DIRECTV TV packages and costs

  • Cox Contour TV starts at $64.99/mo.*
  • 140-250+ channels
  • $75 setup and installation, $20 for self-installation
  • $75 setup and installation, $20 for self-installation
  • HD receiver included, $8.50/mo.* per additional receiver
  • Record two shows at once with basic DVR, up to six shows at once with whole-home DVR

DIRECTV Logo

  • Packages starting at $59.99/mo.*
  • 155-250+ channels
  • Free professional installation available
  • DVR device included, $7/mo.* for each additional receiver
  • Record up to five shows at once

*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. As of 07/08/19.

DIRECTV plans and equipment cost less than Cox Contour TV. Not only do DIRECTV packages start at a lower cost than Cox Contour TV options, equipment and installation cost less too.

Cox doesn’t offer as many packages as DIRECTV, but as a cable TV provider, you’re less likely to experience service interruptions. Cox also doesn’t tie you up in a contract. However, DIRECTV offers more package options, lower prices and better sports channel lineups.

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Unique provider services

CenturyLink offers price for life with no contract required

CenturyLink internet and home phone offers customers a set, month-to-month service rate. The price you pay your first month will be the same price you pay years down the road, as long as you keep CenturyLink service. If you don’t want CenturyLink anymore, you don’t have to worry about breaking a contract, either.

Cox offers Cox Homelife

Cox Homelife gives you the ability to monitor your home’s security devices and other smart home technology from the convenience of your mobile device. Plus, with qualifying bundles, you can enjoy free equipment such as a home monitoring camera. Save energy and manage your home security system on-the-go with Cox’s unique security and home automation service.

Cox vs. CenturyLink customer satisfaction

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) scores internet providers based on feedback from actual customers on the topics of service quality, cost, call center experience and more. Here’s how Cox and CenturyLink ACSI scores compare over the past three years.

ACSI internet service providers ranking

Provider2019 score
2018 score2017 scoreAvg. past three years
59585958.7
CenturyLink Logo
60596260.3

Cox vs. CenturyLink frequently asked questions

Both Cox and CenturyLink offer gigabit internet service with speeds up to 1,000 Mbps in select areas. Other than their fastest available plans, Cox is likely to offer more plans with speeds above 100 Mbps than CenturyLink.

Yes. Cox’s Gigablast internet, which offers download speeds up to 1 Gbps or 1,000 Mbps uses a fiber-optic network. Availability is limited. Call to check Cox Gigablast availability in your area.

Cox gives internet customers 1 TB data allowance per month with most internet plans. Going over your data allowance may result in slower internet speeds and added fees.

The speeds and connection quality you get with CenturyLink depends on which network you have access to. CenturyLink’s DSL network can deliver speeds up to 140 Mbps, but could be much lower, as low as 3 Mbps. CenturyLink’s fiber-optic network can deliver a stronger connection and speeds up to 1 Gbps. Call to see which CenturyLink services are available in your area.

Related provider comparisons

Last updated 07/08/19.

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