Fiber Optic Internet Providers – CNET | Trending Viral hub

AT&T Fiber – Best fiber ISP overall

  • Prices: $55 – $250 per month
  • Speeds: 300 – 5,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts, equipment included

Or call to learn more: (888) 249-1978

Frontier Fiber – Best low-cost fiber plan

  • Prices: $50 – $155 per month
  • Speeds: 500 – 5,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts, no equipment fee

Or call to learn more: (888) 962-8445

Verizon Fios – Best perks among fiber ISPs

  • Prices: $50 – $120 per month
  • Speeds: 300 – 2,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts, free equipment with gig service

Or call to learn more: (855) 786-3011

Google Fiber – Best for gig internet

  • Prices: $70 – $100 per month
  • Speeds: 1,000 – 2,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts, equipment included

Or call to learn more: (877) 339-3106

Windstream Kinetic – Best rural fiber provider

  • Prices: $40 – $70 per month
  • Speeds: 100 – 1,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts

Call to Learn More (844) 412-6784

Ziply Fiber – Fastest fiber internet provider

  • Prices: $40 – $300 per month
  • Speeds: 100 – 10,000Mbps
  • Key Info: Unlimited data, no contracts, fast rural internet connection

Or call to learn more: (877) 306-4879

What is the best fiber internet overall?

The technology your internet provider uses makes a difference. If that technology is fiber-optic, you can rest assured you’re getting the best in speed and reliability. AT&T Fiber is a good example of a fiber connection’s potential and is CNET’s pick for best fiber provider overall. AT&T Fiber has a broad fiber-optic network, a decent selection of high-speed plans, competitive pricing, favorable service terms and a leading customer satisfaction record.

AT&T Fiber isn’t the only option for fiber internet. You’ll find my picks of the best fiber internet providers below. Each of the best internet providers uses a fiber-to-the-home network, which all but guarantees the best connection quality, speed and reliability. Additionally, these providers stand out for their exceptional pricing, availability, customer satisfaction and other factors. We update this list periodically.

Best fiber internet of 2024

Speed range

300 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$55 – $250 per month

Our take – AT&T has the greatest availability of any fiber provider, extending service to more than 16 million potential customers across 21 states. The provider also boasts some of the lowest pricing on fiber internet service when you take into account its new multi-gig tiers. 

Or call to learn more: (888) 249-1978

Check with AT&T

Speed range

300 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$55 – $250 per month

Speed range

500 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $155 per month

Our take – Frontier Communications recently expanded its fiber internet coverage to 19 states and then rolled out a new multi-gig service to the entire footprint all at once, becoming the first major ISP to do so.

Or call to learn more: (888) 962-8445

Check with Frontier

Speed range

500 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $155 per month

Speed range

300 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $120 per month

Our take – Verizon Fios is a close second to AT&T in terms of speed, pricing and service terms, but it lacks the same breadth of coverage. Although available to nearly the same number of potential customers as AT&T Fiber, Verizon Fios primarily serves the mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions. 

Or call to learn more: (855) 786-3011

Check with Verizon

Speed range

300 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $120 per month

Speed range

1,000 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$70 – $100 per month

Our take – Google Fiber is still around and resuming expansion after a multiyear hiatus. Where available, Google Fiber offers fiber internet service starting at $70 a month and a 2Gbps plan starting at $100 a month. Both come with equipment included at no extra cost, no data caps and no contracts. 

Or call to learn more: (877) 339-3106

Check with Google

Speed range

1,000 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$70 – $100 per month

Speed range

100 – 1,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $70 per month

Our take – One disadvantage of fiber internet is that it’s typically only available in select neighborhoods of larger cities. If you’re living in the suburbs or a rural area, then your best chance to get fiber internet is likely Kinetic by Windstream. Roughly a third of Windstream’s network — which spans rural and suburban areas across 18 states — is fiber optic.

Call to Learn More (844) 412-6784

Speed range

100 – 1,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $70 per month

Speed range

100 – 10,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $300 per month

Our take – Ziply Fiber recently rolled out a ridiculously fast 50-gig plan across its entire Northwest footprint in Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington, effectively making it the fastest internet provider nationwide.

Or call to learn more: (877) 306-4879

Check with Ziply

Speed range

100 – 10,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $300 per month

Why opt for fiber internet?

Your internet speeds, reliability and overall experience don’t depend solely on the internet provider you choose. The technology it uses to run service to your home makes a big difference as well.

If I could recommend any internet connection type above all the rest, that’d be fiber. My fiber internet speeds, upload and download, are fast and consistent, even during peak usage times or inclement weather. The standard monthly rate of fiber internet services, while not the cheapest service among internet providers in my area, is still a great value considering the speeds I get.

What to consider when shopping for fiber internet

Fiber internet is the best type of service for most homes, but there’s more to choosing a provider and plan than the connection type. Here are some tips to keep in mind when shopping for fiber internet service.

Availability. You won’t find fiber internet to be available in nearly as many homes as cable, DSL, satellite or even 5G internet. In fact, only around 40% of US households are wired for fiber-optic internet. Availability is scarce in suburban and rural areas and can vary from one neighborhood to the next in most cities. It’s possible fiber internet is just not available at your home or the address you’re moving to.

Speeds. Fiber internet has the fastest upload and download speed potential of any type of internet. Many of the top providers offer speed tiers up to 2,000Mbps (2Gbps), 5Gbps and higher. While the blazing-fast speeds are tempting, they’re likely to be more speed than your home needs. Check out our guide to finding the right internet speed for help selecting a fiber plan that best meets your needs.

Price. If you’re looking for cheap internet, fiber may not be your best option. It’s true that fiber internet plans are often the best value, but you may find cheaper options from cable or 5G providers.

A few fiber providers offer plans with starting prices as low as $30 per month, but you’re more likely to pay at least $50 per month for fiber internet. Cable internet providers including Cox, Mediacom, Xfinity and others have lower-priced plans in many areas. If you are a T-Mobile Magenta Max or Verizon wireless customer, you could get 5G home internet for the discounted price of $25 to $35 per month.

Bundles. Few fiber providers offer a TV service, meaning you may not be able to bundle internet and TV together with the same provider if you choose a fiber internet service. In the days of streaming and cord-cutting, that may not be a deal-breaker for you, but it’s something to keep in mind when shopping for both services.

How we evaluate fiber internet providers

Testing an internet provider the same way CNET tests other products and services is, at best, impractical. Instead, we rely on extensive research of each provider to develop our reviews and recommendations.

When comparing fiber internet providers, availability, speeds and overall value are at the center of our evaluations. We also examine added fees, data caps, contract requirements, customer satisfaction reports and other factors that could affect your quality of service or customer experience.

We refer to the Federal Communications Commission at FCC.gov for ISP availability data and the type of network a provider uses. We then research a provider’s speeds, pricing and service terms through a variety of channels such as the provider’s website and our own historical data. When possible, we contact the provider directly to confirm pricing and speed details.

Finally, to develop a more well-rounded perspective of the provider, we consider customer satisfaction reports from the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power, as well as customer reviews and complaints from sources such as the Better Business Bureau, downdetector.com and even Reddit.

Before writing our reviews and compiling best lists, we research anything and everything the typical shopper would want to know prior to signing up for home internet service. Read our piece on how we review internet providers to learn more about our review process.

Fiber internet honorable mentions

  • EarthLink: EarthLink makes use of the fiber networks installed by other providers or municipal fiber-optic networks, which means available speeds and service quality can vary widely from one region to the next. In select areas, EarthLink offers fiber service with speeds of up to 1 gigabit for around $100 a month.
  • Optimum: Optimum is primarily a cable internet provider, but it does have a growing fiber network, particularly in the greater NYC area. Approximately 2.7 million households are available for fiber service in the area.
  • Xfinity: Comcast Xfinity’s fiber service is also somewhat limited in availability and offers an impressive max speed of up to 6,000Mbps. The catch? The plan comes with an equally jaw-dropping price of $300 a month.

Best fiber internet providers recap

If fiber internet service is available in your area, it’s probably worth getting, especially if any of the providers listed above is an option. AT&T is easiest to recommend thanks to its high availability, low costs and favorable service terms, but Verizon Fios is a close second with low pricing, high customer satisfaction and lots of perks for signing up. Google Fiber, Frontier Fiber, Windstream, CenturyLink and Ziply Fiber round out the list of ideal options while providers like EarthLink, Optimum and others are worth a look, too, if available in your area.

Close up of fiber optic cables

Andrew Brookes/Getty Images

Fiber internet FAQs

Fiber-optic internet sends internet signals via thin glass wires either straight to the home, aka FTTH, or to a node just outside the home, aka FTTN. The technology allows higher bandwidth and faster data transmission than any other connection type and has the unique capability of delivering symmetrical or near-symmetrical download and upload speeds. Fiber internet uses a different type of modem than DSL or the DOCSIS equipment used for cable. In fact, fiber technically doesn’t use a modem at all, but an optical network terminal that performs the same function.

What is the fastest fiber internet?

Ziply Fiber has the fastest speed tier of any major fiber internet provider with maximum speeds of 50,000Mbps, or 50Gbps. Many other fiber providers top out at 5Gbps, 2Gbps or 1Gbps.

Is fiber internet worth the money?

Starting prices for fiber internet plans typically range from $30 to $50 a month, with gigabit service ranging from $60 to $80 a month. While there are cheaper plans available with cable or 5G internet service in select areas, fiber service is likely to come with better speed and connection quality for the price.

Is fiber the best internet connection type?

Yes. Fiber-optic internet offers speeds and reliability that other internet connection types simply cannot, and you can get it for around the same monthly price as cable internet or DSL service. The one drawback is availability: Fiber-optic service is only available to about 36% of US residents, according to the Federal Communications Commission.

Will 5G replace fiber-optic internet?

Not likely. While the potential of 5G home internet is promising, it doesn’t currently offer the speed or reliability that comes with a fiber-optic connection. That said, the wireless delivery method and rapidly expanding availability make 5G home internet a viable alternative to fiber internet in areas where fiber connections are not yet available.

When will fiber be available near me?

If fiber hasn’t reached your address yet, I’m sorry to say you’ll just have to be patient, as providers are actively expanding their fiber networks across the US. You’re more likely to see fiber come to your neighborhood if you live in a city or densely populated area, but providers like Windstream and CenturyLink show that fiber access in suburban and rural areas is also obtainable.



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