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How to find the best internet providers in your area
Many Americans don’t have a whole lot of choice in their internet — around 1 in 4 can only access broadband through one provider — so most of us just go with whichever provider is in our area. An internet service provider’s (ISP) coverage can vary right down to which side of the street you live on. This is because, depending on where your home is, it may not be profitable for the ISP to service your place. As companies expand their fiber offerings, some areas are seeing scattered pockets of availability as well. That’ll continue until the buildout is complete, which can take quite a bit of time.
To provide you with the most accurate results for ISPs in your area, we ask for your address to show you products that are truly available for your home. You can relax knowing that we do not sell or misuse the addresses we collect.
To ensure you are informed of all your options, we’ve analyzed all the nationwide players, comparing speeds, customer service ratings and pricing to help you make comparisons and find the fastest internet in your area.
Where to find the best internet providers
When shopping for a new internet company, it’s likely you’ll discover internet options you previously didn’t know were available. It’s just as likely, however, that some ISPs you thought were (or hoped would be) available are not. Broadband access can vary significantly even in a single community, where one side of a street has access to fiber optic, for instance, and the other side does not.
If fiber optic internet is available in your area, it will almost always give you the fastest, most reliable speeds for the best value. If you can’t get fiber, your next best option is cable internet, but DSL may be a better choice if you’re looking for the cheapest plans. Lastly, satellite internet is a common go-to service in rural areas where fiber and cable are not available. Residents of rural areas may also want to consider fixed wireless providers since they often have lower latency and higher data allowances than satellite providers.
Availability and service areas for top ISPs
Xfinity – Available in 40 states, with primary internet service areas including the Northeast and Midwest, with concentrated pockets of service in central California and Washington.
Verizon – Available in eight states. Primary internet service areas include the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
Spectrum – Available in 41 states. Primary internet service areas include the Northeast, South, Midwest and West Coast.
AT&T – Available in 21 states. Primary internet service areas include the South, Midwest and parts of the West Coast.
Frontier – Available in 25 states. Primary internet service areas include the Midwest, Northeast, parts of the South and Texas.
Cox – Available in 19 states. Primary internet service areas include the Southwest, Central U.S. and the Northeast.
CenturyLink – Available in 35 states. Primary internet service areas include the Northwest, Southwest and Midwest.
HughesNet – Available in all 50 states. Primary internet service areas include rural areas across the U.S.
Source: FCC Fixed Broadband Deployment
Don’t see your local home internet provider?
The companies listed above cover most of the U.S. population, but there are hundreds of smaller, regional providers. These providers extend internet coverage to areas where the largest providers do not reach or provide some often much-needed competition in areas where there is already a major internet provider established.
To help answer “what is the fastest internet in my area?” we’ve listed some of the top regional providers and their service areas below, but there may be other internet options in your area.
Top regional internet service providers and service areas
- Atlantic Broadband – Available in 10 states. Primary service areas include eastern Connecticut, Maryland and Virginia, central Pennsylvania and New Hampshire and the Aiken, South Carolina area.
- Cincinnati Bell – Available in the Greater Cincinnati area and portions of Dayton, OH.
- Google Fiber – Available in Atlanta, GA; Austin, TX; Charlotte, NC; Chicago, IL; Denver, CO; Huntsville, AL; Kansas City, KS/MO; Miami, FL; Nashville, TN; Oakland, CA; Orange County, CA; Provo, UT; Salt Lake Valley, UT; San Antonio, TX; San Diego, CA; San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; The Triangle, NC; West Des Moines, IA
- Mediacom – Available in 22 states. Primary service areas include the Midwest, South and communities along the Atlantic coast in Delaware and North Carolina.
- Metronet – Available in parts of Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Kentucky
- Optimum – Available in four states. Primary service areas include Brooklyn, NY and the greater New York City region.
- RCN – Available in five states. Primary service areas include Chicago, IL; Boston, MA; Manhattan and Queens, NY; Allentown and western Philadelphia, PA and Washington D.C.
- Sonic – Available in California. Primary service areas include the greater Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose and Santa Rosa areas.
- Starry Internet – Available in four states. Primary service areas include Los Angeles, CA; Denver, CO; Boston, MA; New York, NY and Washington, D.C.
- Suddenlink – Available in 14 states. Primary service areas include select rural and suburban parts of Arkansas, California, Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Texas and West Virginia.
- Windstream – Available in 18 states. Primary service areas include rural and suburban parts of the Eastern, Midwest, Southern and Southwestern U.S.
- Ziply Fiber – Available in four states. Primary service areas include regions in the Pacific Northwest formerly served by Frontier.
Find internet providers near you
Whether you’re shopping for cheap internet, a faster plan or an all-around better internet provider, we can help you find the service that’s right for you.
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Our take on the best internet providers
- Verizon Fios – Best overall. Verizon offers a 100% fiber network that makes for fast speeds, high-quality video and excellent reliability. Many Verizon offers some with perks like free streaming subscriptions, gift cards and smart home devices.
- Xfinity – Best cable internet provider. Xfinity provides service to nearly 20 million people across 40 states. They also offer no-contract options so you don’t need to worry about a long-term commitment. Pair those facts with Xfinity’s speeds up to 3,000 Mbps and Xfinity is the best cable internet provider if they are a choice in your area.
- Spectrum – Fast speeds and low fees. Spectrum offers three internet plans from $49.99/mo. to $89.99/mo. with speeds from 200 to 1,000 Mbps. Spectrum only charges $5/mo. for router rental — the modem is free — whereas most providers charge around $10-15/mo.
- Frontier – Best for no hidden fees. Some internet providers hide rental and data fees that cause your bill to grow unexpectedly. That’s not the case with Frontier, where all the plans include equipment rental and offer unlimited data.
- AT&T – Best for fast fiber speeds. AT&T Fiber offers download speeds ranging from 300 to 4,700 Mbps, some of the fastest in the country. If you have a large household of work/study from home users and serious gamers, AT&T Fiber can meet all those needs.
- Cox – Best TV and internet bundles. Although you don’t save any money by bundling Cox’s services, you do get a 30-day money-back guarantee that includes the standard installation charge, your first month’s service fee and your equipment charges. Another perk of Cox is that installation is free on certain bundles.
- CenturyLink – Best for most affordable plans. CenturyLink internet starts at $50/mo. for speeds up to 140 Mbps. Although CenturyLink tends to have only one plan available in its serviceable areas, that plan comes with fast speeds and unlimited data at a reasonable price point.
- HughesNet – Best satellite provider. HughesNet is available pretty much everywhere within the U.S. and its plans come with 25 Mbps download speeds that will allow you to browse the web, watch a video and do most of what you love online. HughesNet plans also come with “Bonus Zone” data, which is an additional 50GB of data included monthly for free available between 2-8 a.m.
Internet provider quick comparison
Making a comparison of internet companies and the services they offer head-to-head is one of the best ways to avoid overpaying for internet service or signing up for a plan that doesn’t fit your needs. Not all providers will be available in your area, but you can use this list to see how the largest ones compare to what’s available near you.
|Provider||Rating||Download speed range||Upload speed range||Monthly price range*|
|Verizon Fios||4.31 out of 5||300 – 940 Mbps||300 – 880 Mbps||$39.99 – $89.99|
|Xfinity||3.54 out of 5||25 – 3,000 Mbps||3 – 3,000 Mbps||$19.99 – $299.95|
|Spectrum||3.57 out of 5||200 – 1,000 Mbps**||10 – 35 Mbps||$49.99 – $89.99|
|Frontier||3.56 out of 5||9 – 2,000 Mbps||1 – 2,000 Mbps||$39.99 – $149.99|
|AT&T||3.41 out of 5||10 – 4,700 Mbps||1 – 4,700 Mbps||$45.00 – $180.00|
|Cox||3.45 out of 5||25 – 940 Mbps||1 – 940 Mbps||$29.99 – $99.99|
|CenturyLink||3.24 out of 5||20 – 940 Mbps||1 – 940 Mbps||$50.00 – $65.00|
|HughesNet||2.10 out of 5||3 – 25 Mbps||1- 3 Mbps||$59.99 – $149.99|
|Google Fiber||4.50 out of 5||1,000 – 2,000 Mbps||1,000 – 2,000 Mbps||$70.00 – $100.00|
|WOW!||3.94 out of 5||100 – 1,000 Mbps||10 – 50 Mbps||$19.99 – $64.99|
|Optimum||3.56 out of 5||300 – 940 Mbps||20 – 940 Mbps||$35.00 – $55.00|
|Mediacom||3.44 out of 5||60 – 1,000 Mbps||5 – 50 Mbps||$19.99 – $79.99|
|RCN||3.36 out of 5||10 – 1,000 Mbps||2 – 20 Mbps||$19.99 – $59.99|
|Suddenlink||3.35 out of 5||300 – 940 Mbps||10 – 940 Mbps||$30.00 – $70.00|
|Kinetic by Windstream||3.33 out of 5||15 – 1,000 Mbps||1 – 1,000 Mbps||$37.00 – $67.00|
|Starry Internet||N/A||200 Mbps||200 Mbps||$50.00|
|Cincinnati Bell||N/A||250 – 1,000 Mbps||100 – 500 Mbps||$44.99 – $64.99|
|MetroNet||N/A||100 – 1,000 Mbps||100 – 1,000 Mbps||$49.99 – $69.99|
|Ziply Fiber||N/A||50 – 1,000 Mbps||50 – 5,000||$20.00 – $300.00|
|Viasat||N/A||12 – 100 Mbps||3 Mbps||$99.99 – $299.99|
*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 02/02/22.
**Wireless speeds may vary.
Tips for choosing the best internet service
How much should I pay for internet? What’s a good internet speed? After 20+ years of helping people find the best internet service for their homes, we’ve become experts at answering internet questions like these and ones you may not know you had.
Speed is one of the most important considerations when choosing an internet service. The average household in the U.S. gets around 200 Mbps of download speed, but many people can get by with less. Discover what speeds you need and take our speed test to see what you’re currently getting.
Internet technology types
Not all internet connections are the same. Find out how different technologies affect the quality of internet service
Fast speeds and high availability make 5G Home Internet comparable to cable and fiber.
5G Home Internet isn’t compatible with all devices, and walls or other barriers can block signals.
With fast and reliable download and upload speeds, fiber is a popular internet choice.
Fiber is unfortunately one of the least available internet types, covering only 40% of the U.S.
Available to 89% of U.S. households, offers gigabit speeds and is one of the most reliable forms of internet service.
Low upload speeds and slowed speeds during peak usage times can be an issue.
DSL availability spans 89% of the U.S. and is known for relatively cheap plans.
Available speeds max out at around 100 Mbps with DSL service.
Fixed wirelessWireless providers
Fixed wireless is also ideal for rural areas and does not have the high latency of satellite internet.
Low speeds and data caps are downsides of fixed wireless internet.
Available throughout all 50 states, satellite internet is ideal for rural areas.
Plans are likely to come with low data allowances, high latency and be more expensive than wired connections.
Internet provider FAQs
We don’t provide internet service ourselves, but we connect you with the providers that are available in your area.
Often, more rural areas have fewer internet provider options due to the high cost of the infrastructure. Satellite providers HughesNet and Viasat are available everywhere, but don’t expect the higher speeds you would get from fiber or even DSL connections. However, Starlink is the newest player in the field, with speeds up to 150 Mbps and a starting price of $99/mo.
Larger ISPs like Verizon and AT&T are expanding their service areas every year, as are leading-edge internet companies like Starlink and Google Fiber. 5G home internet options are expanding as well, with companies like T-Mobile and Verizon leading the way. The passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will provide billions of dollars for infrastructure to carry internet service to rural and underserved communities.
Written by:Joe Supan
Senior Writer, Broadband Content
Joe Supan is the senior writer for Allconnect and MyMove. He has helped build the proprietary metrics used on Allconnect’s review pages, utilizing thousands of data points to help readers navigate these comple… Read more
Edited by:Robin Layton
Editor, Broadband Content
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