Internet Service Providers – Top Ten

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Although generally speaking we don’t always have a lot of choices when it comes to Internet service providers since not all are available everywhere, it can be helpful to know what the various ones have to offer for number of reasons. First of all there may be a choice between two or three. Second of all it can be helpful when someone is considering moving to a new area of the country to know what providers are available. Obviously it might not be a deal breaker if your favourite ISP is not offered where you want to move to, but knowing ahead of time is you the option to choose somewhere else if you’d like to. The following are 10 of the more well-known Internet service providers along with some information about them. They are listed in order of their Alexa traffic count rating.


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1. AT&T:

Global Alexa Rating: 447

AT&T offers U-verse® high speed Internet which is an IP-based Internet service using new fiber optic technology. They are now able to offer more speed options, more reliability and work on activity than ever before. A link on their site lets you put in your address to check for availability. They offer four different plans based on the downstream speed you desire. Currently the Pro plan offers up to 3 Mbps for $29.95 per month, the Elite plan for up to 6 Mbps four $34.95 per month, the Max Plus plan for up to 18 Mbps for $44.95 per month and the Power plan for up to 45 Mbps for $64.95. All plans require a one-year contract. They also offer bundled plans that include television and telephone services. Equipment includes a wireless gateway that is located inside your house and uses electrical power to deliver all your U-verse® services Inc. creates a safe and secure wireless home network. There is also a battery backup which allows you services to function during a power outage for up to four hours.




2. Comcast:

Global Alexa Rating: 940

Comcast also offers a number of levels for Internet so that users can select the one that suits their needs, thereby avoiding paying for more than they desire. There are known for providing various specials such as introductory pricing and rebates, so be sure to read the details and restrictions that apply. They offer speeds starting at 3 Mbps and going up to 105 Mbps. A number of their plans include access to 500,000 Wi-Fi hotspots across the country. They also include Constant Guard which is a comprehensive online protection valued at $360 – it includes identity card, password protection and the Norton security suite. They also offer bundles such as their XFINITY Double Play and XFINITY Triple Play. They also offer business services.




3. Verizon:   

Global Alexa Rating: 869

Verizon offers two types of services – a standard option that runs on a copper wire network for dependable DSL Internet and FiOS which runs on a sophisticated network of 100% fiber optics designed to enhance speed and clarity for the fastest Internet. The standard option offers a high speed Internet option as well as an enhanced option. The high speed option is .5 to 1 Mbps download and 384 Kbps upload and includes 9 email accounts. There are three levels of enhanced plans – 1.1 to 3 Mbps, 3.1 to 7 Mbps and 7.1 to 15 Mbps. These plans also include 9 email accounts but also include Wi-Fi hotspot access. Although their speeds are lower than other companies, the cost for these options are low, starting at just $19.99 per month and do not require an annual contract. FiOS plans come in six speeds: 15/5 Mbps, 50/25 Mbps, 75/35 Mbps, 150/65 Mbps, 300/65 Mbps and 500/100 Mbps. The high levels are blazingly fast but may not be available in all areas just yet. All FiOS plans require a 2-year agreement. They also offer bundles with HD TV and telephone service.




4. Earthlink:

Global Alexa Rating: 962

EarthLink offers various residential and business services. Residential services include dial-up Internet, broadband cable Internet, high-speed DSL, freestanding DSL, web hosting and wireless Internet. Information about HughesNet satellite Internet is also included on the EarthLink website. It is beneficial to have so many options for Internet from just one source so you can accommodate both needs and budget as they change. The website has a feature where you can input your address and they will tell you which types and speeds of service are available for your address as well as pricing. They were founded in 1194 and have a reputation for outstanding service and product innovation.




5. Cox:

Global Alexa Rating: 1,878

The Cox website is easy to follow in regards to seeing the options available. They have four different Internet packages: Essential, Preferred, Premier and Ultimate. All plans include 10 email accounts. The Essential plan offers download speeds up to 5 Mbps, upload speeds up to 1 Mbps and 1 GB of secure online backup. The Preferred plan offers 25/5 speeds and 5 GB backup. The Premier plan offers 50/10 speeds and 50 GB backup. The Ultimate plan offers 100/20 speeds and unlimited secure online backup. Currently the first 3 months of service are at half price and regular rates for the four levels are $48.99, $62.99, $73.99 and $99.99, respectively. Their service also includes the ability to connect to Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide and the Cox Security Suite Plus powered by McAfee. Customers have the option to rent the modem or purchase it. They also offer bundle packages.




6. CenturyLink:

Global Alexa Rating: 1,925

CenturyLink has a wide range of Internet speeds available starting at just 768k and going up to 40 Mbps. One of the nice things about this company is they have an Internet Low-Income Assistance Program that provides an inexpensive netbook, low cost Internet service and free basic Internet training for those that qualify. They have over 3 million residential customers and growing rapidly. They include a comprehensive suite of online backup and Internet security services. They also offer a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. They offer various bundles that can include Internet, TV, phone and home security. Their Prism TV service is interactive TV that you control anywhere, any time, on any device. Their whole-home DVR and wireless set-top boxes make it a breeze to put your TV anywhere you want around your home – take it outside even!




7. Time Warner Cable:

Global Alexa Rating: 2,255

Time Warner Cable offers six Internet speed options, up to 50 Mbps in most locations and up to 100 Mbps in select areas. The lowest priced plan is just $14.90 per month for up to 2 Mbps speed making it a budget-friendly option for the occasional Internet user doing a light amount of web surfing. The other plans are Basic (3 Mbps), Standard (15 Mbps), Turbo (20 Mbps), Extreme (30 Mbps) and Ultimate (50 Mbps). The two lowest plans come with 5 email accounts and 100 MB of email storage space. The standard plan has 10 email accounts/2GB storage. The Turbo plan has 25 email accounts and 5 GB storage. The Extreme plan has 25 email accounts and 10 GB of storage. The Ultimate plan has 30 email accounts and 10GB of storage space. All but the lowest two plans also include free access to their 200,000+ Wi-Fi hotspots. Extreme and Ultimate plans also include home Wi-Fi free. They also offer bundled services.




8. Charter:

Global Alexa Rating: 6,420

Charter offers download speeds up to 30 Mbps and enough bandwidth to support plenty of devices in your home. They also offer up to $200 towards any termination fees you incur with your current ISP. Included is their Charter Security Suite which can be installed on up to 3 computers and includes parental controls to block access to unwanted websites by age level, category or time of day. Their upload speed is a swift 4 Mbps which is higher than a number of other ISPs. Internet begins at just $39.99 per month for the first 12 months and is discounted another $10/month if part of a bundled service. They also include free use of their modem – no rental fees! Charter was founded in 1993.




9. NetZero:

Global Alexa Rating: 7,132

NetZero offers a number of different types of Internet service including basic dial-up, accelerated dial-up, DSL broadband and mobile broadband. Their dial-up plans offer the first month free and you do not need to put in credit card information. Basic costs just $9.95/month and Accelerated is $14.95/month and offers the additional features of Norton AntiVirus, pop-up blocker, video acceleration and a MegaMail premium email. It is also 5x faster than basic. You are allowed 1-2GB of email storage but you can upgrade to get more space. To get a price for their DSL, enter your home phone number. Their DSL speeds are up to 100x faster than standard dial-up.




10. Frontier Communications:

Global Alexa Rating: 9,562

Frontier offers Internet starting at $19.99 per month with qualifying phone service. This is the price for their 6 Mbps service which includes a free Wi-Fi router and does not have any contracts or activation fees. If you do not want to have a phone line requirement, the cost begins at $29.99 per month. They also offer bundles. You can lock-in the price for 2 years on any of their plans. The website shows the two options with plans starting at those prices, so there may be additional plans that you could qualify for in your area. There is an 800 phone number on the website to call for information.


Often the trick is figuring out what ISPs are available in your area. One way to find out is to use a website such as to search what is available in your zip code and see what plans they each have available. Most areas will have some high-speed internet options and perhaps a few dial-up options. Another option is satellite Internet such as offered by HughesNet. All prices and packages given are as of the date of this review and are as shown for the reviewer’s location. They may be different where you live or may have changed.


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