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Editor's Pick
Best Overall Value


  • Price Range: $55 - $180 per month
Image of AT&T Logo

Why AT&T? AT&T is one of the best ISPs for many reasons, one of them being its reputation for excellent customer service. In an industry that isn’t known for good customer service experiences, this is a big deal. AT&T is also gearing up with its download speeds via its fiber-optic network, allowing customers to experience high-speed internet.

More about AT&T

There’s a lot more to AT&T than customer service, although that’s an important asset. It offers fixed wireless, IPBB, and fiber internet options depending on location. All services have consistent coverage at reasonable rates, creating the perfect trifecta.

AT&T offers all its internet services contract-free with no early termination fees. With reliable connections and gigabit speeds, you won’t need to get on the line with customer service. AT&T is widely available across the county, making it an accessible and affordable option.


Astound Broadband Powered by RCN

  • Price Range: $20.99 - $50.99 per month
Image of RCN Logo

Why Astound Broadband Powered by RCN? Astound Broadband Powered by RCN is much less reliant on monopolies than some of its competitors are, and it shows. Better prices, superior customer service, and great internet-only options set Astound Broadband Powered by RCN apart from its less popular peers. A no-nonsense internet provider with a solid reputation, Astound Broadband Powered by RCN is a great choice for those who have access to it.

More about Astound Broadband Powered by RCN

To residents of certain cities, being zoned for Astound Broadband Powered by RCN is a big deal. Take New York City, for instance, where Spectrum Internet® has a monopoly in some neighborhoods and competes with Astound Broadband Powered by RCN in others. Spectrum Internet is far from the worst ISP out there, but Astound Broadband Powered by RCN zoning is still a treasured thing in NYC. Residents who have the choice tend to opt for Astound Broadband Powered by RCN (your faithful blogger is one of them).

Astound Broadband Powered by RCN is also available in other metropolitan areas, including Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.


  • Price Range: $49.99 - $89.99 per month
Image of Verizon

Why Verizon Fios? There’s not much subjectivity about this category. By most measures, Verizon offers the speediest internet around. Its fiber-optic network, Fios, claims speeds of up to 940/880 Mbps, and real-world testing has put Verizon ahead of its competition in terms of pure speed.

More about Verizon Fios

Fios is Verizon’s fiber-optic network, and the type of cables used here is key to why the speeds are so fast. Optical fiber cables work by transmitting pulses of light. The frequency range, or bandwidth, that they can carry is broader than that of copper cables, meaning more information can be sent at once — in other words, faster communication, and faster internet speeds.

Verizon Fios also offers reasonable prices and has a good reputation for customer service, which is why we also awarded them our top spot in our Overall category. They won this category by being the fastest, but it’s worth noting that your region may not have access to Fios, and that the fasted provider for you may be a different ISP.


  • Price Range: $55 - $180 per month
Image of AT&T Logo

Why AT&T? Simply put, AT&T has the best reputation for customer service among the major ISPs. In an industry that — let’s face it — is not exactly known for its pleasant customer service experiences, AT&T enjoys a shockingly good reputation for quality service.

More about AT&T

AT&T includes the services formerly known as AT&T U-Verse (and still sometimes called that by consumers and the media alike, despite the best efforts of AT&T’s marketing department). There’s much more to it than the great customer service, of course, and in some areas it offers the fastest internet available.

Those who rely on AT&T for their mobile coverage may be able to get discounts and bundles — as will cord-havers, of course, who can bundle AT&T with AT&T’s legacy pay TV services.


  • Price Range: $49.99 - $149.99 per month
Image of frontier-logo

Why Frontier? Some of the best ISPs on the market are focused on big cities and metropolitan areas. But that doesn’t mean that rural residents are out of options. Frontier is a reliable ISP that brings internet connections to underserved areas. While the infrastructure in such areas is sometimes limiting, Frontier has done a pretty good job of offering fast internet speeds.

More about Frontier

If you live in an area served by Frontier’s internet plans, it may be your only option. Frontier targets areas that have traditionally been under-served by internet service providers, so the competition is, by definition, extremely limited. Despite this, Frontier has a decent reputation for customer service. It also fared well in our Frontier review.

Frontier isn’t the only ISP that is focused on rural areas. CenturyLink has also been instrumental in bringing high-speed internet to previously under-served areas, and rural residents can also consider mobile plans or satellite internet.


  • Price Range: $49.99 - $99.99 per month
Image of HughesNet-Logo

Why HughesNet? Among the few reputable satellite internet providers you can choose from, HughesNet tends to fare the best with critics. It offers solid speeds at prices that its peers can’t seem to match. Satellite internet has its limitations, but HughesNet is among the providers that can offer broadband-like speeds using satellite technology.

More about HughesNet

HughesNet is a satellite internet provider, which means that your connection will be carried by satellites rather than by cables. Broadband cables are usually the way to go for internet connections, but not every area has access to high-speed broadband cables, and satellite internet can be the best choice in underserved areas.

Among the satellite providers, our research indicates that HughesNet has the best reputation. Cord cutters will also want to consider Viasat — while HughesNet tends to get better marks from critics, Viasat is a great choice for those willing to pay more for higher speeds. In the world of cord-cutting, high internet speeds can be a big plus!


  • Price Range: $49.99 - $89.99 per month
Image of Verizon

Why Verizon Wireless? Verizon’s mobile carrier service is widely considered the best on the market. Though its contracts tend to be a bit pricier than those of its peers, Verizon Wireless offers top-notch speeds, great customer service, and incredible coverage.

All about Verizon Wireless

In most cases, even an unlimited mobile data plan is no substitute for a home internet plan. But cord-cutters will probably want to have both. Mobile data plans are practically essential these days, and there are so many cool things to stream on your phones and tablets while you’re on the go!

Cord cutters don’t always get to enjoy great bundle discounts, but it’s worth pointing out that Verizon offers various ways to save money by signing up for both Verizon Wireless and Verizon Fios. If you’re still a cord-haver, then you should consider Verizon’s triple play deal, too — it includes internet, TV, and phone coverage for a very attractive price.