While residents in the city of Austin want to “Keep Austin Weird” (their official slogan), they still need decent internet to do so! Luckily, the Lone Star State’s capital city offers a large number of broadband and fiber-optic providers. Read about the eight best internet providers in Austin, Texas to help you decide which option could work best for you.
1. Google Fiber
If you have access to Google Fiber, you are guaranteed 100 percent fiber-optic internet connectivity with equal download and upload speeds. Google Fiber is one of the best internet providers in Austin, if not our top choice overall. It only offers two plans — 1,000Mbps and 2,000Mbps. But both options offer quick internet speeds, no data limitations, no contracts, and no additional equipment rental fees. And, due to fast download speeds, this internet service is a great option for those who love to stream 4K videos or game.
However, Google Fiber might not be your first choice if you’re on a budget. Their basic plan starts at $70 a month. But if you need to pay for speed and quality, this is the best bet.
In terms of where to find Google Fiber in Austin, the South and East Austin neighborhoods are the easiest to get service. The north of the city is also starting to receive service.
The second-best fiber internet service provider in Austin, in our opinion, would be AT&T. It is more widely available than Google Fiber, and its fiber plans provide a wider range of choices, ranging from 300Mbps to various multi-gigabit plans, including one with a maximum speed of 5,000Mbps.
However, not all Austin residents can access AT&T Fiber. Many have to use AT&T’s subpar DSL service, which has download speeds that top out at about 100Mbps. Unlike some satellite plans available in the rural areas of Austin, you can get more data, spend less, and get faster speeds with AT&T.
AT&T provides unlimited data on their fiber plans and no annual contracts. There may be a small data cap for fixed wireless, so keep that in mind.
|Package||Download Speed||Data Cap||Price|
|AT&T Internet 300||300Mbps||1TB/month||$55/month for 12 months|
|AT&T Internet 500||500Mbps||1TB/month||$65/month for 12 months|
|AT&T Fixed Wireless||25Mbps||350GB/month||$59.99/month|
|AT&T 1 Gig Internet||1,000Mbps||N/A||$80/month for 12 months|
|AT&T 2 Gig Internet||2,000Mbps||N/A||$110/month for 12 months|
|AT&T 5 Gig Internet||5,000Mbps||N/A||$180/month for 12 months|
Spectrum covers an incredibly large area of Austin, even outside of city limits. The company’s residential internet service includes the modem in their monthly fee as well, but if you want a Wi-Fi router, it’ll cost you an extra $5 a month.
No matter where you’re located, you can choose from three plans with download speeds of 300, 500, or 940 Mbps. There are also no data caps or allowances. However, upload speeds are limited at 35Mbps, so not great if that’s what you need your internet the most for.
With simple pricing, zero contracts, and free access to nationwide Wi-Fi hotspots, this affordable service may be a great choice for many Austin residents.
|Spectrum Internet||300Mbps||$49.99/month for 12 months|
|Spectrum Internet Ultra||500Mbps||$69.99/month for 12 months|
|Spectrum Internet Gig||1,000Mbps||$89.99/month for 12 months|
HughesNet specializes in providing internet access to 1.5 million clients, especially in places where there are no other options. According to the provider, you can use satellite internet as long as you can see the southern sky unobstructed.
The company offers a number of intelligent choices, including a video data saver tool that enables users to watch more movies while using less data and a “Bonus Zone” from 2 a.m. to 8 a.m. with access to up to 50GB of extra data per month. Because fewer people are online during those hours, it’s ideal to download or upload big files, movies, and system upgrades during that time.
Although satellite internet service is often slower than other services, it’s the best choice for many customers — like those in rural locations. On the other hand, a satellite internet provider like HughesNet may not be able to meet your needs if you depend on fast internet speeds and limitless data (like when working from home).
All options for HughesNet’s internet service include download speeds of 25Mbps and upload rates of 3Mbps. Customers can purchase plans with monthly data allowances ranging from 15GB to 100GB. But consumers on a tight budget may not be able to afford larger plans. Although there are no strict data limits, once you go over your plan’s monthly cap, speeds start to slow down. If you require more data, you can change your plan or buy more data for a fee.
|Package||Download Speed||Data Cap||Price|
|Fusion 50 GB||25Mbps||50GB||$99.99/month|
|Fusion 100 GB||25Mbps||100GB||$174.99/month|
EarthLink offers service across the DSL and fiber-optic networks from other providers, including AT&T, CenturyLink, Frontier, and Verizon. Since it integrates the accessibility of many provider networks, EarthLink is one of the most broadly accessible internet service providers in the state of Texas and one of the best internet providers in Austin.
If you shop around, you’ll discover that EarthLink’s internet charges are more than those of the majority of ISPs, but at least they offer unlimited data and a promise not to restrict anyone’s connection.
Since EarthLink offers a variety of networks and connection methods for home internet access, the plans and speeds that are available can change significantly by address. While we will list the most popular services and pricing, keep in mind that your address will determine your actual cost and service.
Unfortunately, all plans have a one-year contract and a $200 early termination fee, and there is no introductory pricing. There is also a $13 monthly equipment rental price and a one-time installation fee of $40-$80.
|50GB||25Mbps to 100Mbps||$64.95/month|
|75GB||25Mbps to 100Mbps||$79.95/month|
|100GB||25Mbps to 100Mbps||$99.95/month|
|150GB||25Mbps to 100Mbps||$149.95/month|
6. T-Mobile Home Internet
T-Mobile provides service for more than just cell phones. They also offer their 5G home internet service, with coverage in 49 states. However, they’re still converting and expanding their 5G network, so as of right now, it may be patchy service. Since T-Mobile only offers one plan, simplicity is the name of the game for their internet offerings. What you see is what you get.
The advertised internet speeds from T-Mobile range from 35Mbps to 115Mbps. These aren’t lightning-fast speeds, but if you only require basic coverage for web browsing and streaming, this is an optimal option.
Additionally, T-Mobile doesn’t impose any data limitations. So technically, you’d be able to stream indefinitely. Also, you’ll get 5G internet coverage (where eligible), or 4G LTE if you can’t get 5G. They have a price lock guarantee, too, so you’ll never see an increase in monthly payments.
7. Optimum by Altice
Optimum by Altice is a service offering fast speeds and lower costs. However, they have consistently declining customer service and their prices vary widely based on your location. We will list the most popular plans, but depending on your area, you may be paying more or less.
For instance, certain locations will receive 200Mbps or 400Mbps, while others can get a cheap 100Mbps package. Luckily many Optimum service areas will have access to fiber connection with symmetrical upload and download speeds and multi-gigabit plan options, benefiting around 1.6 million homes. And, Optimum just unveiled their 2,000Mbps and 5,000Mbps plans, meaning super-fast speeds, perfect for working from home, gaming, and even live streaming.
Optimum internet is also free of data caps and commitments. So with no contract requirements, and no throttling, you can always switch to a service that works better for you (although you won’t get some of these speeds anywhere else).
|Optimum 300||300Mbps||$45.00/month for 12 months|
|Optimum 500||500Mbps||$65.00/month for 12 months|
|Optimum 1 Gig||940Mbps||$85.00/month for 12 months|
|Fiber Internet 1 Gig||1,000Mbps||$80.00/month for 12 months|
|Fiber Internet 2 Gig||2,000Mbps||$100.00/month for 12 months|
|Fiber Internet 5 Gig||5,000Mbps||$180.00/month for 12 months|
8. Verizon 5G Home Internet
The places where Verizon’s 5G fixed wireless home internet service is available are growing, making it one of the best internet providers in Austin. And, eligible Verizon Wireless users can receive a 50% discount to reduce the price of the internet service, which is a great incentive if you’re already partnered with them.
Verizon offers a faster average download speed (300Mbps) than T-Mobile Home Internet. But due to Verizon’s heavy reliance on its Ultra Wideband 5G technology, its coverage still really only covers big cities.
Verizon 5G Home Internet offers a basic and plus plan, with fair and straightforward pricing (fees and taxes already included). Despite being a no-contract provider, they also have a three-year service price guarantee. So if you sign up with them, you won’t have to worry about unexpected price increases for your internet. If you have a large household with several devices that require a dependable and high-speed internet connection, their 5G Home Plus plan has speeds of up to 1,000Mbps. It’s perfect for multi-device use, streaming, gaming, and working. However, their basic plan offers download speeds that are great for a two-person household or if you’re working from home.
|5G Home||300Mpbs||$25/month with a mobile plan, $50/month stand-alone|
|5G Home Plus||1,000Mpbs||$35/month with a mobile plan, $70/month stand-alone|
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The image featured at the top of this post is ©Roschetzky Photography/Shutterstock.com.