At a Glance

Type of Service Cable Fiber
Channel Count Up to 380+ 425+ channels/145+ in HD
Price $64.99–$150.99 $64.99–$89.99
Equipment Fees Up to $28.49 per month Up to $32 per month
Installation Fee Starts at $75 Starts at $90
Contract No No
Customer Satisfaction 3.36/5 3.66/5
Packages View Cox Plans View Verizon Plans

Data effective 1/24/2017. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers are available in all areas.

You know what you want—great, reliable TV with plenty of choice and flexibility at an affordable price. The hard part is figuring out which provider can deliver on those expectations. That’s where the team at CableTV.com can help. We’ve got a wealth of reviews and expert knowledge at our fingertips to draw comparisons, break down where each provider excels, and give you plenty of at-a-glance information so you can choose a package and a provider that’ll fit your priorities.

See what Cox and Verizon plans are available in your area:

 


Should you choose Cox Contour or Verizion Fios as your TV service provider?

The Verdict

Cox Contour TV
Cox faces many of the same challenges as its competitors: poor pricing and lackluster customer service. The monthly pricing for many of the higher-tier packages is sky high, and Cox generally scores low in customer satisfaction, ranking toward the bottom in most categories. However, Cox does offer reliable TV service, provide a great on-demand library, and are more widely available than Verizon Fios TV. Plus, Cox’s DVR comes with a ton of storage. If that sounds like your kind of cable package, Cox might just be your kind of provider. Just watch those add-on Paks!

Verizon Fios TV
 Verizon Fios offers more channels, reliable service, and faster internet speeds, and it even gets higher ratings for customer service and satisfaction. In fact, Verizon tops the charts in several categories, including overall satisfaction. But this is balanced by the fact that it is only available in a handful of locations, charge exorbitant installation fees, and supply a DVR with significantly less storage than Cox. Verizon Fios is an excellent choice if you need the reliability and speed of fiber, place a high value on customer service, or want to take advantage of the increased channel selection and fast internet speeds that come with a bundle.


Cox Contour TV

Overall Customer Rating

3.36 Stars (3.36 / 5)

Verizon Fios TV

Overall Customer Rating

3.66 Stars (3.66 / 5)

Advantages:

  • Great support site
  • Easy self-installation instructions
  • Lots of storage space on DVR

Advantages:

  • Excellent channel selection
  • Great customer service ratings
  • Fast and reliable fiber-optic network
  • Simultaneous twelve-program DVR recording

Disadvantages:

  • Expensive packages
  • Poor customer service ratings
  • Limited channel selection

View Plans

 

Disadvantages:

  • Limited geographical availability
  • Less DVR storage than most
  • High installation fees

View Plans

 


Installation & Setup

Cox Contour TV

3.54 Stars (3.54 / 5)

Cox offers clear, easy-to-understand installation instructions for those who prefer the DIY approach. In fact, the process is so simple that even a non-techy person should have no trouble with it. For a professional installation, there’s a price—$75 to be exact. While installation fees are par for the course with cable companies, $75 is a hefty fee to pay just for TV-service installation, so know what you’re getting into before you sign up for a professional installation. Even a self-installation won’t get off without a fee—there’s a $20 charge to self-install!

Verizon Fios TV

3.76 Stars (3.76 / 5)

Verizon scores well here, sitting near the top of the list of providers for customer satisfaction. It offers a choice of professional installation or self-installation, but be warned: if you want to have a pro install your system for you, it’s going to cost you—big time. Installation starts at $90 and can go as high as $150, which is one of the highest installation fees out there. Fortunately, there are clear guides and a robust support site if you decide to go at it alone. (We wouldn’t blame you!)


Channels

Cox Contour TV

3.29 Stars (3.29 / 5)

Cox offers 380 channels with its highest-tier package, Contour TV Ultimate. At first glance, that may seem like a lot—until you compare it to other providers. Cox has one of the worst customer satisfaction scores of any television provider when it comes to channels, and poor selection has a lot to do with that. As consolation, the company does offer a large library of on-demand content, with over 10,000 titles to choose from. This could help make up for the lack of live selection for many folks.

Verizon Fios TV

3.75 Stars (3.75 / 5)

Verizon ranks much higher on channel selection, offering over 425 channels on its top-end Ultimate HD package—that’s one of the highest channel counts of any provider. It’s also a large part of why Verizon customers are so satisfied in this category. In fact, Verizon comes in first place by a wide margin. However, the HD channel selection is not as robust as you might expect, with only about 145 channels in the Ultimate HD package. Verizon Fios also offers on-demand content, though the library is not as extensive as Cox’s.


Reliability

Cox Contour TV

3.72 Stars (3.72 / 5)

Cox’s service is fairly reliable. The main reason for the lower score is the fact that the company uses traditional coaxial cables, which are not as reliable as fiber-optic cables. But you should be just fine with Cox, experiencing only the occasional hiccup during peak times.

Verizon Fios TV

4.08 Stars (4.08 / 5)

Verizon scores very high on reliability. A major reason for this is that fiber-optic cables are more stable and less prone to interference and slowdowns than the traditional cable technology used by most other providers. You can expect a consistently good experience with Verizon, even during congested time slots.


Monthly Bill

Cox Contour TV

2.67 Stars (2.67 / 5)

Cox’s Contour TV plans start at $64.99 per month and run over $150 per month, which is pretty hefty. You can also add additional channel packs for a fee, which can add up quickly. For example, if you wanted to add the Variety Pak, which includes channels like Disney Junior and BBC America, it’ll add $11.50 to your monthly bill. Throw in a sports package, and suddenly your bill is almost $90 per month—and that’s just for the first twelve months; you can expect a hefty increase after the promotional period ends, regardless of which provider you go with. Suffice it to say, Cox scores low here for a reason.

Verizon Fios TV

3.02 Stars (3.02 / 5)

Verizon Fios TV packages range from $64.99 to about $89.99 per month, which is more manageable than Cox’s prices, although the price will increase significantly after a period. Verizon’s packages all come with more channels, too: Verizon’s lowest tier offers over 225 SD and 80 HD channels. Of course, this good deal is balanced somewhat by the massive installation fees.


Tech Support & Customer Service

Cox Contour TV

3.6 Stars (3.6 / 5)

Cox sits in the middle of the pack for customer service. On the plus side, it has a comprehensive support site, with guides and how-to articles on a variety of topics. On the other hand, it doesn’t take much searching to find irritated customers online. This is typical: cable companies are notorious for poor customer service. Just be aware that although this is the case, you likely won’t have to deal with customer service very often.

 

Verizon Fios TV

3.7 Stars (3.7 / 5)

Verizon does a bit better here; in fact, the American Customer Satisfaction Index ranks the company first among subscription TV services. It also offers a robust support site with all the features you’d expect.

 


Equipment

  Cox Contour Record 6 HD-DVR Verizon Fios Multi-Room DVR
Simultaneous Recording 6 12
Storage 300 hours of HD programming 200 hours of HD programming
Price $28.49 $32.00
Approximate Dimensions 2.25” x 13” x 9” 2.5” x 15” x 10”
# of TVs per DVR NA Up to 10
Additional Features Watch in any room, voice control Pause and rewind live TV

Data effective 1/24/2017. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers are available in all areas.


Internet Service

Cox High Speed Internet

Cox offers your standard cable internet options. Download speeds range from 15 Mbps to 300 Mbps, depending on the package you choose. Upload speeds are much slower, ranging from 2 Mbps to 30 Mbps. You can purchase internet service separately, or as part of a bundle with cable and phone. The speeds are solid, and the service is reliable; if you’re going for Cox TV, there’s no reason not to just go all-in and grab a bundle with prices starting at $89.99.

View Bundled Plans

Verizon Fios Internet

Verizon also offers internet service, and it has some definite upsides. One nice thing about relying on fiber optics for internet access is that you get an upload speed equal to the download speed. Fiber also tends to be more reliable and handles lots of congested traffic better than coaxial cables do. Oh, and did we mention it’s fast? In select areas, Verizon Fios Internet has blazing 750 Mbps download and upload speeds. Like Cox, Verizon Fios offers internet separately or bundled with TV and phone, with bundles starting at $79.99 for the first year.

View Bundled Plans


More About the Providers

Cox Communications

Cox Communications is a privately-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises that provides cable television, telecommunications, and home automation services in the nation. Cox is the third-largest cable provider in the United States, serving more than six million customers, including 2.9 million cable subscribers, 3.5 million internet subscribers, and almost 3.2 million phone subscribers.

Verizon Fios

Verizon Fios, a subsidiary of Verizon Communications, provides television, internet, and phone service to over five million people across nine states. Fios stands for Fiber Optic Service; the company’s network operates over fiber-optic cables. Verizon was among the first major providers to offer fiber-optic services to residential customers in the United States.


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