Best Internet Providers 2022: Plans, Prices, Deals, and More

Got a need for speed? Want to save cash on your internet plan? Find out what internet provider is best for you.

Editor's choice

Price: $49.99–$89.99/mo.
Download speed: 200–940 Mbps
Data cap: Unlimited

Fastest

Price: $55.00–$180.00/mo.
Download speeds: 100–5,000 Mbps
Data cap: 1 TB–Unlimited

Best for performance

Price: $19.99–$299.95/mo.
Download speeds: 50–3,000 Mbps
Data cap: 1.2 TB–Unlimited

Best no-contract

Price: $49.99–$89.99/mo.
Download speed: 300 Mbps–1 Gbps
Data cap: Unlimited

Cheapest

Price: $49.00–$65.00/mo.
Download speed: 100–940 Mbps
Data cap: Unlimited

Whether you’re looking for the absolute best internet service or the fastest home internet, we’ve got you covered. Out of our five recommendations for the best home internet providers, Verizon Fios is our top pick, but each internet service provider (ISP) below offers something special to fit your needs.

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Best internet service providers head to head

Internet provider Price Max download speed Data cap Details
Verizon $49.99–$89.99/mo. 200–940 Mbps None View Plan
AT&T $55.00–$180.00/mo. 100–5,000 Mbps 1 TB–Unlimited View Plan
Xfinity $19.99–$299.95/mo. 50–3,000 Mbps 1.2 TB–Unlimited View Plan
Spectrum $49.99–$89.99/mo. 300 Mbps–1 Gbps Unlimited View Plan
CenturyLink $49.00–$65.00/mo. 100–940 Mbps Unlimited View Plan

Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

There are a lot of great internet options out there, from both large-scale and local internet companies. These are our picks of the best major ISPs.

If you want to love your ISP’s customer service and reliability, Verizon Fios is the way to go. If money is no object and internet speed is the one thing that matters to you, AT&T’s 5,000 Mbps internet plan is the fastest one available for a home internet connection. For affordable and widely available cable internet, Xfinity will make every dollar count.

When you want to avoid a contract, CenturyLink is one of your best cable internet options. If you want to bundle multiple services for your home, Spectrum offers great internet plans along with our favorite cable TV channels.

But those aren’t the only reasons these ISPs are the ones we recommend. Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of each.

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Editor's Choice Small

Editor’s choice: Verizon Fios

Price:
$49.99–$89.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
200–940 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Pros

  • High customer satisfaction
  • Matched upload and download speeds in most cases

Cons

  • Pricey DSL plans

For three years in a row, Verizon Fios was customers’ far and away favorite in our customer satisfaction survey. Its high score took into account its stellar customer service, its well-priced plans, and the reliability of its 100% fiber network.

As with many of our top ISPs, Verizon Fios offers you unlimited data and no contracts. Verizon Fios also frequently offers internet deals that include free hardware, subscription services, and waived installation fees.

If you’re interested in TV service, consider Verizon Fios TV and internet bundles. Verizon Fios’ TV plans come with an excellent mix of channels, and you can add home VoIP phone service for an additional $20 per month.

Verizon Fios internet pricing and plans

Packages Price* Max download speeds Max upload speeds Details
Fios Internet 200/200 $49.99/mo. 200 Mbps 200 Mbps View Plan
Fios Internet 400/400 $69.99/mo. 400 Mbps 400 Mbps View Plan
Fios Gigabit Connection $89.99/mo. 940 Mbps 880 Mbps View Plan

*w/ Auto Pay + taxes & equipment charges. Data effective as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Also, video calls will look fabulous for you and the people watching you, thanks to these high upload speeds. Go ahead and treat yourself to an animated Zoom background—these speeds can handle it.

A word of caution: We’re talking about Verizon Fios, which is fiber internet, not Verizon High-Speed Internet, which is DSL internet. The latter reaches speeds only as high as 15 Mbps, but it will run you $74.99 per month. That’s not a fair shake.

One more word of caution: Verizon Fios is located in only nine eastern states.

  • Delaware
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Virginia
  • Washington, DC

If you’re shopping for internet in one of these states, we’d recommend Verizon Fios, but if you’re elsewhere, you’ll be out of luck.

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Fastest internet: AT&T

Price:
$55.00–$180.00/mo.
Max download speeds:
100–5,000 Mbps
Data cap:
1 TB–Unlimited

Pros

  • Best bang for your buck
  • No annual contract

Cons

  • Fast internet speeds in only limited areas

AT&T’s 5 Gig Internet plan is one of the fastest gig plans out there. Whether you’re working from home or gaming online, internet speeds like that let you run rampant on the ole information highway. We always recommend getting fiber internet if it’s in your neighborhood because you’ll get the best internet performance and it’ll be much better than cable or DSL internet.

But watch out for one major roadblock: AT&T’s aging network. Rural areas aren’t outfitted with advanced fiber cables, and with AT&T’s one-price-fits-all mentality, you’ll pay a whopping $55.00 per month even if your town has only AT&T’s creaky old DSL internet.

That hurts like watching someone drive an ancient sedan off the lot for the same price as a new sports car.

AT&T internet pricing and plans

Packages Price Max download speeds Max upload speeds Connection type Details
AT&T Internet 100 $55.00/mo. 10–100 Mbps 1–20 Mbps DSL/Fiber View Plan
AT&T Fiber Internet 300 $55.00/mo. 300 Mbps 300 Mbps Fiber View Plan
AT&T Fiber Internet 500 $65.00/mo. 500 Mbps 500 Mbps Fiber View Plan
1 Gig Internet $80.00/mo. 1,000 Mbps 1,000 Mbps Fiber View Plan
2 Gig Internet $110.00/mo. 2,000 Mbps 2,000 Mbps Fiber View Plan
5 Gig Internet $180.00/mo. 5,000 Mbps 5,000 Mbps Fiber View Plan

Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

But there’s light at the end of the tunnel. AT&T offers plans without annual contracts, so you can tuck and roll out of a plan whenever you want without paying extra fees.

AT&T also offers decent internet, TV, and phone service bundles. DIRECTV STREAM, which is AT&T’s main option for bundled TV service, has a sizable number of cable and broadcast TV channels for between $69.99 and $139.99 per month.

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Best for performance: Xfinity

Price:
$20.00–$299.95/mo.
Max download speeds:
50–3,000 Mbps
Data cap:
1.2 TB–Unlimited

Pros

  • Wide availability
  • Fast fiber speeds

Cons

  • Expensive gig plans
  • Contracts
  • A scheduled price increase

It’s pure speculation on our part that Xfinity from Comcast offers its 3,000 Mbps Gigabit Pro plan just to land on top-five lists like this one—but here we are. Most people don’t need anywhere near that sort of speed, but if 1,000 Mbps plans aren’t fast enough for you (we’d love to hear why), Gigabit Pro ($299.95/mo.) is a very expensive way to triple your bandwidth.

But even if you don’t need pricey gigabit internet, there’s still a lot to like from Xfinity’s internet plans. Xfinity is widely available nationwide and if Xfinity’s in your neighborhood, you’ll have guaranteed cable internet service and download speeds. On providers like AT&T and CenturyLink, fiber internet availability can vary widely depending on where you live.

Xfinity internet (Central) pricing and plans

Package Price Max download speeds Max upload speeds Details
Connect $20.00/mo.* 50 Mbps 5 Mbps View Plan
Connect More $40.00/mo.* 100 Mbps 5 Mbps View Plan
Fast $50.00/mo.* 300 Mbps 5 Mbps View Plan
Superfast $50.00/mo.** 600 Mbps 10 Mbps View Plan
Ultrafast $60.00/mo.** 900 Mbps 15 Mbps View Plan
Gigabit Extra $70.00/mo.** 1,200 Mbps 35 Mbps View Plan
Gigabit X3 $299.95/mo.** 3,000 Mbps 3,000 Mbps View Plan

*For the first 12 months with a 1-year agreement.
**For the first 24 months with a 2-year agreement.
Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Xfinity’s speeds vary by region, but you’ll generally be able to get a 100 Mbps to 200 Mbps internet plan for less than $50 monthly.

We’re not the biggest fans of Xfinity’s contracts and scheduled price increases, especially since competitors like Verizon and AT&T have moved to flat-rate monthly pricing. But Xfinity still earned its spot here thanks to its excellent scores in our annual customer satisfaction survey.

Xfinity also has strong TV and phone services if you’re interested in an Xfinity bundle. Xfinity’s cable TV add-ons include its stellar X1 cable box, Flex streaming stick, and a free Peacock Premium subscription.

Visit our Xfinity internet review to learn more about Xfinity’s exact internet plans in your area.

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Best no-contract internet: Spectrum

Price:
$49.99–$89.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
300 Mbps–1 Gbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Pros

  • Contract-free internet
  • Great TV plans

Cons

  • Expensive prices compared to competitors
  • A small price increase after 12 months

All of Spectrum’s internet plans are contract-free, so you can leave at any time without having to deal with early termination fees. Plus, if you’re searching for a  deal, Spectrum’s TV and internet bundle is one of the cheapest around at only $44.99 a month. Its channel lineup isn’t enormous, but the à la carte channel add-ons are well-priced if you want more TV.

Spectrum internet pricing and plans

Package Price Max download speeds Max upload speeds Details
Spectrum Internet $49.99/mo. for 12 mos. 300 Mbps 10 Mbps View Plan
Spectrum Internet Ultra $69.99/mo. for 12 mos. 500 Mbps 20 Mbps View Plan
Spectrum Internet Gig $89.99/mo. for 12 mos. 1 Gbps 35 Mbps View Plan

Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

When it comes to performance, Spectrum’s internet plans are no slouch, either. Although the provider’s internet plans are generally pricier than competing cable internet providers, Spectrum still earned strong scores in our annual customer satisfaction survey.

Plus, Spectrum occasionally offers deals like two-year price guarantees. If your neighborhood qualifies for this promotion, you can lock in your promotional price for an extra year and won’t have to deal with a second-year price increase. For more information, head over to our Spectrum deals guide.

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Cheapest: CenturyLink

Price:
$50.00–$65.00/mo.
Max download speeds:
100–940 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Pros

  • Affordable fiber internet plans
  • No data cap

Cons

  • An old DSL network

CenturyLink shares a lot in common with AT&T: both providers have excellent fiber plans that are bookended with a serviceable but aging DSL network.

CenturyLink internet pricing and plans

Package Price Download speeds up to Upload speeds up to Connection type Details
CenturyLink Fiber Internet (100 Mbps) $50.00/mo. 100 Mbps 100 Mbps Fiber View Plan
CenturyLink Fiber Internet (940 Mbps) $65.00/mo. 940 Mbps 940 Mbps Fiber View Plan
Simply Unlimited Internet $50.00/mo.* 100 Mbps 30 Mbps DSL View Plan

Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
*Paperless billing or prepaid required. Additional taxes, fees, and surcharges apply. Get the fastest Internet speed available at your location (max speed is up to 100 Mbps.)

We’d recommend CenturyLink’s fiber internet plans if your neighborhood has CenturyLink fiber coverage. Along with excellent download and upload speeds, you’ll also get unlimited data and won’t have to worry about a contract or second-year price increase.

But if your address isn’t covered by CenturyLink fiber, you’ll have to settle for its DSL Simply Unlimited Internet plan. As with most DSL networks, your maximum speed depends on CenturyLink’s DSL service in your area. Depending on your location, your home might get 100 Mbps service or be saddled with a meager 10 Mbps connection.

CenturyLink doesn’t offer TV service, but you can still bundle CenturyLink phone service with your internet plan (although you won’t get a bundle discount).

Interested in CenturyLink service?

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Other top internet providers

Whether you’re in the sticks or the suburbs, there are ISPs for virtually any budget and situation these days. While these ISPs missed out on our best ISP rankings, they’re still worth checking out if you’re within their coverage map.

For a complete list of providers, visit our internet service provider guide, or if you’re looking for something more specific, consider our list of the best internet service providers.

Google Fiber

Price:
$70.00–$100.00/mo.
Max download speeds:
1,000–2,000 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Google Fiber might not have the best reach—at the moment, it’s available in only 20 US cities—but when it’s available, it’s impressive. Fiber internet will always be faster and more reliable than the competition (read our fiber internet review to find out why), and with only two plans, Google makes it easy to access high speeds right away.

Google doesn’t roll out deals or price cuts very often, but its customers enjoy no data caps and the 2 Gig plan comes with a Wi-Fi 6 router and Google’s mesh Wi-Fi extender.

Like other internet providers, Google Fiber has an option to bundle internet and phone together, although if you’re looking for fiber TV, you won’t find it here: Google refers customers to YouTube TV instead.

View Google Fiber Plans

Ziply Fiber

Price:
$20.00–$60.00/mo.
Max download speeds:
1–1,000 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Despite having a network that runs only between Washington, Oregon, Montana, and Idaho, Ziply Fiber has some of the most affordable fiber internet plans we’ve seen on the market.

Customers can get fiber internet plans with download and upload speeds between 50 Mbps and 1,000 Mbps with plans starting at $20 per month. Ziply also has a DSL network, but as with most DSL/fiber ISPs, we’d recommend Ziply’s DSL plans only if you can’t get fiber or cable internet service.

View Ziply Plans

Optimum

Price:
$40.00–$180.00/mo.
Max download speeds:
300–5,000 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Optimum’s internet plans check off a lot of the boxes we like to see from ISPs: with it, you’ll get unlimited data, decent fiber internet availability, no contracts, and fast download speeds.

Although Optimum had lackluster marks on our customer satisfaction survey, its strong network still helped the ISP earn a spot on our best ISPs for gaming list.

View Optimum Plans

Cox

Price:
$29.99–$99.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
25–1,000 Mbps
Data cap:
1 TB

Cox’s internet prices aren’t the greatest compared to competitors like Xfinity, but its StraightUp Internet offers decent performance and value for a prepaid internet service. Cox earned its place on our list of the best cheap ISPs, and earned great marks on our annual customer satisfaction survey.

View Cox Plans

Vyve Broadband

Price:
$39.99–$79.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
105 Mbps–960 Mbps
Data cap:
1–2 TB

Rural and small-town broadband can be a hit-or-miss experience, but Vyve Broadband fills in more gaps than we’d typically expect from a regional provider. Vyve’s availability can be unpredictable, but if you’re in a rural area with Vyve coverage, you’ll thankfully have an alternative between slow DSL service and expensive satellite internet.

View Vyve Plans

Viasat

Price:
$64.99–$249.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
12 –100 Mbps
Data cap:
80–300 GB

If you live in a rural area, you might not have many options for internet service. For that, you’ll probably want satellite internet. However, this service often comes with a catch: slower upload speeds, slower download speeds, and low data caps. Even though it markets itself as “unlimited,” Viasat’s plans slow down once you’ve reached your limit, so if you’re able to, pick a plan with a lot of data like Unlimited Platinum 100.

As satellite internet goes, Viasat isn’t bad. Read more about its strengths and weaknesses and how it compares against its main competitor in our Viasat vs. HughesNet face-off.

View Viasat Plans

HughesNet

Price:
$64.99–$159.99/mo.
Max download speeds:
25 Mbps
Data cap:
15–75 GB

If you’re in a rural area and looking for speed, you probably shouldn’t go with HughesNet. It has much lower speeds than competitors—but you can’t beat its low prices if you just want something cheap that lets you check emails and read the news.

For anything more than light web surfing, look elsewhere, unless you want to hit your plan’s data cap and endure throttled speeds. The exception? HughesNet offers a “Bonus Zone” period that gives you an extra 50 GB of data between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. RIP to your sleep schedule after that.

For more about internet service in rural areas, head over to our rural internet guide.

View HughesNet Plans

What’s the fastest internet service provider?

If speed is your number one concern, check out our fastest internet providers guide to learn more about ISPs with the best download speeds.

What to look for in top internet service providers

Some internet services have exciting deals and freebies that look super impressive. But when you want the best home internet, make sure the price per month, download speed, and data caps meet your standards before you sign a contract.

Price per month

Since there’s no standard for internet pricing, even 25 Mbps plans can run anywhere from $19.99 to $60.00 per month. It’s a big range, we know. Price depends a lot on your provider and location.

If you’re looking for budget-friendly internet service, we recommend trying to find a deal around $50 per month. Most providers have basic internet plans that are at or below this price point.

Incredible internet service for cheap

These best home internet providers offer download speeds between 100 Mbps and 500 Mbps for $50 per month or less.

Despite the wide range between 100 Mbps and 500 Mbps, all of those speeds are superb options for most homes. Read “Free and Low-Income Internet Plans for Families, Seniors, and Students” to learn how to save money on your internet service.

Download speed

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) defines broadband—high-speed internet—as 25 Mbps download speeds and 3 Mbps upload speeds. Unless you’re in a rural area, it’s easy to find internet speeds like that nowadays.

But our internet usage is growing all the time. People stream more, game more, and telecommute more. Add to that cool smart home devices, and our bandwidth usage is higher than ever.

With that in mind, we recommend trying for faster internet speeds. Going from 25 Mbps to 50 Mbps will make a world of difference, but jumping up to 100 Mbps is the best fit for most homes.

Unless you’re a super internet user, you probably don’t need 1,000 Mbps, but if you feel like your internet connection is too slow, go ahead and kick it up a notch. Check out our internet speed guide if you need help deciding what internet plan best fits your household.

Data caps

Data caps—also called data allowances—are limits on how much an ISP will let you use the internet before it charges you extra fees.

Every time you upload or download something, whether it’s clicking a link, sending a Facebook message, or streaming a show from Netflix, you’re using data.

We didn’t talk about data caps much in this article because our top five recommendations all meet our standards. That means they’re all around 1,024 GB (1 TB), which is more than plenty for the average household. (Should you be concerned about going over 1TB of data? We’ve got the answer.)

But knowing your provider’s data caps and how much it will charge you can save you a lot of heartbreak. We broke down all the limits and fees in this data cap article, so you don’t have to dig through internet contracts to find your info.

Final take

There are some excellent internet providers out there with stellar deals and fast internet speeds. But providers vary by area, so you’ll need to figure out your options before setting your heart on one.

Here’s what you’ll need to know about our best ISP picks:


Verizon Fios—best overall

  • Verizon Fios combines excellent fiber internet plans with superb customer service. It’s not the most widely available ISP, but if you’re in one of the nine states with Verizon Fios coverage, we’d recommend getting a plan.


AT&T—fastest

  • AT&T offers affordable gigabit internet plans up to 5,000 Mbps, some of the fastest on the market today.


Xfinity—best for performance

  • Xfinity’s reliable cable internet service is widely available nationwide.


Spectrum—best no-contract internet

  • If you’re interested in a TV and internet bundle, Spectrum’s TV plans are a great deal thanks to its excellent channel lineups filled with premium channels.


CenturyLink—cheapest

  • CenturyLink’s fiber internet and DSL plans are refreshingly straightforward: flat-rate pricing, excellent download speeds, and no contracts.

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Best internet providers FAQ

What company has the best internet service?

Verizon Fios offers the best home internet in the US. It has fast download and upload speeds, low latency, and unlimited data.

What is the fastest internet speed?

The fastest internet download speed you can get for your home is 5,000 Mbps. You’ll find this high-speed internet offered only by AT&T.

What is the fastest internet service?

AT&T is the fastest internet provider in the USA thanks to its 5,000 Mbps home internet plan. This ridiculously expensive plan will run you $180.00 per month, and it’s not available in all areas.

But if you live in a big city, and you’ve got the cash, you could practically break the sound barrier with these download speeds. Still, 100 Mbps internet plans are fast enough for most of us, and they’re a lot more affordable.

What is the best rural internet?

Xfinity and CenturyLink offer support for many rural areas, but if you’re deep in the wilderness, satellite internet from Viasat or HughesNet or fixed wireless internet service from providers like Rise Broadband might be your only options for internet access. Check out our article “Best Rural Internet Providers” to make the best choice for you.

What is the fastest satellite internet provider?

Viasat has the fastest satellite internet service, with download speeds up to 100 Mbps. Satellite internet usually costs more and has more latency than fixed wireless or wired internet services like DSL, fiber, or cable internet. But unlike cable, DSL, or fiber ISPs, Viasat is widely available and covers more cities and rural areas.

Who is the best internet provider in my area?

The best internet provider for you depends on availability in your area, but our best national providers picks offer a strong mix of value and internet performance.

  1. Verizon Fios
  2. AT&T
  3. Xfinity
  4. Spectrum
  5. CenturyLink

Use our zip check tool above to see if any of our top internet provider picks are available in your area.

What’s the worst internet provider?

Our most recent internet customer satisfaction survey, which asked customers from 10 major internet providers to rate their internet experience, placed EarthLink in last place.

As for this writer, the worst internet provider I’ve reviewed is Windstream. If you’re in an area where it offers affordable broadband internet, it’s not so bad, but it’s shockingly overpriced in many areas.

Windstream also uses outdated DSL tech, but thanks to its unlimited data and low-priced modem, it still pulls through for some folks. Just be careful when choosing Windstream—or any internet provider for that matter.

Should I choose an internet-only provider?

Almost every internet provider out there has internet-only packages, so there’s no need to avoid a provider just because it offers optional TV service.

Methodology

To find this year’s best internet providers, we analyzed each ISP’s plans based on factors including price, internet performance, and download speeds. We also relied on our annual internet customer satisfaction survey to find out how current customers felt about their ISPs.

For more information on our methodology, check out our How We Rank page.

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