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San Diego is a business-friendly city with numerous job opportunities. It’s also among the fastest-growing cities in the US because of its friendly environment, consistently mild weather, plenty of outdoor activities, and thriving economy.

There are a number of trustworthy internet service providers (ISPs) in San Diego, offering reliable connectivity to boost growth and productivity. Each ISP provides various unique features and high-speed Internet to its subscribers. While they ensure the entire city has decent coverage, only a few providers offer outstanding performance. Let’s review the best Internet providers in San Diego.

AT&T

AT&T covers over 99% of San Diego and 43% of California. They provide internet plans with speeds ranging between 50Mbps and 1000Mbps. Its bonuses include speed upgrades and no activation fees for online orders.

Many US metropolitans need help to adapt to fiber-optic technology, and AT&T provides lightning-fast, reliable Internet services.  Moreover, it partnered with DIRECTV for television services and home phone services.

Features:

  • Contract options: 12 months
  • Zero upfront equipment fees
  • Packages/plans: Internet $55, $55, $80, $110, and $180.
  • Data and speed: 100Mbps, 500Mbps, or 1Gig, 2Gig, 5Gig speed.
  • Price: $50 to $75 per month, plus a $15/month equipment fee and no activation fees when purchased online

Cox Communications

Cox is popular if you’re interested in bundling TV, phone, and the Internet.  However, the company only provides cable Internet, not fiber-optic or DSL. 

That isn’t necessarily bad; cable is an excellent alternative to DSL because cable allows for greater bandwidth.

Cox offers five plans with speeds ranging from 10Mbs to 940Mbs.  Pick Internet 1000 and enjoy an unlimited data plan; otherwise, plans include 1TB coverage. 

Speeds aren’t as high as some of its competitors, but Cox has more flexible pricing.  You can access Cox Security Suite Plus, cloud storage, and hotspots for free Wi-Fi

Features:

  • Contract options; 12 months
  • Price: $35.00 to $100.00 per month, plus equipment fees
  • Data and speed: 10, 30, 150, 300, 940 with 1TB per month of data
  • Packages/plans: Cox Internet Starter 10, Preferred 150, Essential 30, Gigablast 940, Ultimate 300

EarthLink’s coverage area was significantly higher than our best picks. Its DSL speeds go up to 75Mbs, while its fiber-optic services through the Hyperlink Internet plan can go up to 1000Mbs. 

San Diego is the leading access area for EarthLink users, which means super-dependable and high-speed Internet services for their users. The company doesn’t have data caps and teaser rates.  However, it charges extra monthly fees and sign-up fees, so be careful to figure that math into your decision. 

Features:     

  • Contract options: 12 months
  • Packages/plans: HyperlinkTM Internet
  • Data and speed: 15, 30, 60, 70, 80, 100, 200, 1000 with unlimited data
  • Price: $15 to $50 per month, plus $7/month equipment rental, $70 installation cost, and about $200 in cancellation fees
Earthlink homepage
Earthlink doesn’t have data caps and teaser rates, but they do have monthly fees and sign-up fees.

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Other Internet Service Providers in San Diego

Ultra Home Internet

Like EarthLink, Ultra leases cellular airwaves from T-Mobile to provide Internet services at suitable locations in San Diego. Regardless, Ultra’s plans aren’t as budget-friendly as T-Mobile’s $50 monthly plan.

To begin with, you should pay Ultra about $65 per month for the same speeds. Unlike T-Mobile, you may have to pay equipment fees of $15 per month for your router and modem. Ultra’s plans come with a low monthly data cap of 25GB, which most homes would hit quickly.

You might raise that cap to 55GB if you’re willing to pay $90 per month or as high as 170GB for $200 per month. But even then, you would only be getting a one-eighth as much data as you would with a cable provider that enforces data caps, like Cox. Its cellular Internet, but without the more enticing terms of significant providers, which makes Ultra an option to avoid if possible.

Google Fiber Webpass

Google doesn’t have full-fledged SDL or Fiber infrastructure in San Diego. Yet, select addresses throughout the area are hooked up to Google Fiber’s Webpass services, which uses receivers mounted to building exteriors and rooftops to offer the residents inside high-speed fixed wireless connection.

Availability is limited, but the terms are reasonable — no data caps for $60.00 per month with an annual commitment or $75.00 per month without one.

Most of San Diego’s Webpass-ready buildings are located downtown and in its surrounding environs, including the Gaslamp Quarter, the Marina, East Village, and Cortez Hill.

You might find other Webpass locations clustered further north in areas like University Heights, Morena, Hillcrest, and the Midway District, among other spots.

T-Mobile

T-Mobile is a nationwide broadband service provider. After a recent merger with Sprint in April 2020, they expanded their 4G LTE network to 99% of the country and their 5G network to 80% of the country. Unlike its competitors in San Diego, it offers traditional broadband internet services to its customers starting from $50 per month.

T-Mobile offers home internet services with the promise of no hidden charges or annual contracts. Its most popular home service available in San Diego is the 5G home internet option. It is a fixed wireless internet service with only one plan for one price. The speeds range between 33Mbps and 182Mbps, sometimes faster than DSL and satellite. The plan is also unlimited, with no soft or hard data caps imposed. There are no installation costs because a user only requires a 5G gateway device, which they can plug in by themselves.

T-Mobile Internet service is advantageous because of the zero equipment and installation costs and no other hidden contract and commitment fees. It is disadvantaged by the limitations in coverage and the fluctuation of the speeds. Overall, it is an option worth considering.

T-Mobile Internet home
T-Mobile Internet service has zero equipment and installation costs and no other hidden contract and commitment fees.

Race Communications

Race is another small company popular in San Diego because of its good fiber internet service. It also bundles internet, phone, and TV into one premium fiber service. Race communications currently serve close to 8000 residents within California, mainly targeting people from rural areas.

It offers constant internet speeds of 1 Gigabit within its network. The installation costs between $1000- $2000, including installing fiber conduit and house wiring. Race rents out internet equipment at a charge of $5 per month per Wi-Fi mesh unit. Gigabit internet-only goes for $70, phone for $20, and Expanded TV for $119. It is an option worth checking, especially if you come from a remote region within San Diego.

Fast Facts for San Diego

The chart below contains an overview of the type of Internet services in San Diego. For more information on specific plans, contact one of the listed companies.

Fastest providerAT&T Internet provides 500Mbps Cable for $180 per month
Cheapest provider above 15MbpsCox Communications provides 100Mbps cable for $50 per month.
ISPs providing bundled servicesAT&T Internet, Cox Communications, and Race
Average speed in the city150Mbps

Fiber Internet Providers in San Diego 

Race Communications, Ting, EarthLink, and AT&T, are fiber Internet providers in San Diego. AT&T is the most popular fiber provider with the best prices and the fastest speeds. Race Communications and Ting are regional providers worth considering if you can get fiber from EarthLink or AT&T where you live.

Fiber isn’t widely available in the city- you’re more likely to find DSL or cable providers in America’s Finest City. However, if you can get fiber in your location, we highly recommend it. Fiber offers the most reliable connection and fastest speeds and is often cheaper than lesser connection types.

Cheapest Internet Provider Plan in San Diego

Most providers in the city offer home Internet services starting from $50.00 per month, but Cox is the most affordable plan of all, with an upload speed of 3Mbps and download speed of 25Mbps, for $30.00 per month during the first year and $45.00 afterward. If you need a basic connection and want to pay as little as possible, that’s a nice place to start.

If you’re a Verizon mobile client, we recommend checking to see if Verizon 5G Home Internet is available at your location. It’s worth considering if so- with speeds of about 1000Mbps and a monthly base rate of $50.00. If your Verizon mobile plan qualifies, you might get a 50% waiver, bringing the cost to $25.00. That’s with no data cap and no charge increase after the first year.

Wrapping Up

No matter how you use your high-speed Internet — streaming sports, movies, videos, or online gaming with your loved ones — a stable and fast connection is a must. Slow-down speeds or too much buffering can ruin your experience. Thankfully, these ISPs can offer the best Internet solutions in San Diego.

Best Internet Providers in San Diego FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Does San Diego Have Fiber Internet?

Yes. Along with regional providers like Race Communications and Ting that service communities like Rancho Santa Fe and Encinitas, AT&T offers Fiber Internet to thousands of homes in San Diego.

However, it isn’t widely available. The company’s newest multi-gig plan is only available at select locations in the city. Likewise, the level of services is currently limited. EarthLink also provides fiber services only by leasing existing fiber infrastructure from AT&T.

What is the Cost of Internet services in San Diego?

Charges vary by provider, but most of the top Internet options offer services from $50.00 per month, plus applicable fees and taxes. Among major San Diego providers, Cox provides the most affordable plan at $30.00 per month with downloadable and upload speeds of 25Mbps and 3Mbps, respectively.

What are the factors to consider when getting internet in San Diego?

It would be best to consider the internet providers available within your locale.

Consider the monthly internet subscription charges and other hidden charges such as equipment and commitment fees.

Consider the data caps on your internet, as some are very low, and you can blow them fast depending on your needs.

Which providers allow bundling internet, TV, and Phone services?

Cox communications will be best if you want to bundle TV, phone, and internet services.

What are the charges to look out for when going for an ISP?

Consider equipment charges, commitment fees, installation and activation fees, early termination fees, late payment fees, recovery fees, and data overage fees.

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