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AT&T Internet Review 2021
AT&T has well-priced internet plans, but its fiber internet brings the most value and fastest speeds.
|AT&T Internet 300||$35/mo.*||300 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 500||$45/mo.*||500 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 1000||$60/mo.†||940 Mbps||View Plan|
AT&T is giving some of its fiber internet customers a free speed boost.5 If you're on the 100 or 300 Mbps AT&T Fiber plan, you should see your speeds bump up to 300 or 500 Mbps, respectively. Talk about a nice surprise.
It’s been a confusing ride for AT&T internet lately. Last year it announced that its DSL service was gone. But now it seems like AT&T DSL internet is back. *raised eyebrow*
We checked out AT&T’s DSL and fiber hybrid internet service as well as its full-fiber internet to see how its prices and speeds compare to other internet service providers (ISPs). What we found was that AT&T internet isn’t a bad deal, but the best value lies in its fiber internet plans.
Let’s dig into the details and see if AT&T internet is right for you.
|AT&T Internet up to 75 Mbps||$45/mo.‡||75 Mbps||1 TB||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 100||$45/mo.*||100 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 300||$35/mo.*||300 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 500||$45/mo.*||500 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 1000||$60/mo.†||940 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plan|
You’re in the right place. U-verse Internet is now AT&T Internet, which offers a DSL or DSL-fiber hybrid internet connection that costs $45 a month.
- Well-priced fiber plans with unlimited data
- Option to bundle DSL with DIRECTV
- Full fiber connections offered in some areas
- Limited fiber availability
- DSL speeds can be sluggish
- 1 TB data cap on DSL plans
AT&T internet prices and plans
AT&T offers a mix of fully fiber and fiber plus DSL hybrid plans. (And, technically, plain old DSL plans while it continues to upgrade its network.)
What plans you can choose from depends on where you live—AT&T Fiber is available mainly in large cities, but its DSL service is available in suburbs and more rural areas. (P.S. For simplicity’s sake, we’re referring to AT&T’s DSL-fiber hybrid service as “DSL.”)
AT&T DSL internet plans come with a max speed of 100 Mbps, but depending on your location, you could see speeds as low as 10 Mbps. (More on internet speeds in just a bit.)
That said, if you can get those faster speeds, the price isn’t too bad.
|AT&T Internet up to 75 Mbps||$45/mo.‡||75 Mbps||DSL||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 100||$45/mo.*||100 Mbps||Fiber||View Plans|
Want TV with your internet? Maybe some phone too? The good news is that bundling your AT&T service can save you some cash.
The better end of the deal is AT&T’s fiber plans by far though. If you’re in an area where AT&T Fiber is available, we say go for it. It comes with some of the lowest prices for the speeds you get—300 Mbps all the way to 940 Mbps.
Plus you get unlimited data and upload speeds that match your download speeds. That’s perfect for school or work at home.
|AT&T Internet 300||$35/mo.*||300 Mbps||Fiber||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 500||$45/mo.*||500 Mbps||Fiber||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 1000||$60/mo.†||940 Mbps||Fiber||View Plan|
AT&T internet prices after 12 months
All of AT&T’s internet plans start out with a promotional price that lasts for 12 months. After that, you’ll see your bill go up by $10–$20 extra a month.
Here’s a quick look at how much each plan costs after 12 months.
Price after 12 mos.
|AT&T Internet up to 75 Mbps||$45/mo.‡|
|75 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 100||$45/mo.*|
|100 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 300||$35/mo.*|
|300 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 500||$45/mo.*|
|500 Mbps||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 1000||$60/mo.†|
|940 Mbps||View Plan|
Where is AT&T internet available?
You can get AT&T internet in 21 different states, but its fiber internet plans tend to service only large cities and suburbs in those states.
You can check to see if your city has AT&T Fiber using its fiber coverage map.
How does AT&T internet compare to Spectrum, Xfinity, and others?
In general, AT&T’s prices and speeds are pretty competitive when you compare it to Cox, Spectrum, Comcast Xfinity, and WOW! Internet. Here’s a breakdown of some of AT&T’s internet plans compared to the price you’d pay for similar speeds.
|AT&T Internet||AT&T Internet up to 75 Mbps||$45/mo.‡||75 Mbps||View Plans|
|Cox Internet||Cox Internet Starter 25||$29.99^||25 Mbps||View Plans|
|Cox Internet||Cox Internet Essential 50||$39.99^||50 Mbps||View Plans|
Both Spectrum and WOW! Internet don’t offer internet plans with speeds lower than 100 Mbps. But if you have the option of either Spectrum or WOW!, the price they charge for more download speed might be a better deal than AT&T’s Up to 75 Mbps plan.
|AT&T Internet||AT&T Internet 100||$45/mo.*||100 Mbps||View Plans|
|Cox Internet||Cox Internet Preferred 150||$59.99^||150 Mbps||View Plan|
|WOW! Internet||Internet 100||$39.99°||100 Mbps||View Plans|
Aside from a middle-of-the-pack price for 100 Mbps speeds, the AT&T Internet 100 plan comes with unlimited data. Cox and Xfinity come with a 1.25 TB and 1.2 TB, respectively, while both WOW! and Spectrum offer unlimited data on their plans. (Though rumor is WOW! is capping its data in mid-2021.1)
|AT&T Fiber||AT&T Internet 1000||$60/mo.†||940 Mbps||View Plan|
|Cox Internet||Cox Gigablast||$99.99^||940 Mbps||View Plan|
|Spectrum Internet||Spectrum Internet® Gig||$109.99/mo for 12 mos.**||Up to 1000 Mbps**||View Plan|
|Xfinity Internet - Central||Gigabit||$80††||1200 Mbps||View Plan|
|WOW! Internet||Internet 1000||$74.99°||1000 Mbps||View Plans|
If you’re eyeing gig speeds, AT&T Fiber’s price for its 940 Mbps plan is hard to beat. But for an extra bit of NOS to jump ahead in the race, Xfinity’s 1,200 Mbps plan costs just $10 more a month than the AT&T Fiber 940 Mbps plan. Otherwise, AT&T Fiber is the best deal for gig speeds compared to Cox, Spectrum, and WOW! Internet.
Still need to do a little comparison shopping? Check out these other reviews:
Is AT&T internet cheap?
Overall, AT&T’s internet prices are right in line with what you’ll see from other ISPs—or cheaper. We think the biggest value is in its fiber internet plans. But AT&T’s DSL internet plans are risky since you don’t always know what speed you’ll get.
- Compared to Cox: AT&T Internet and Cox prices start out even, but Cox’s Gigablast 940 Mbps plan is much more expensive than the AT&T Fiber Internet 1,000 plan.
- Compared to Spectrum: There’s no comparison of AT&T’s low-speed DSL plans here since Spectrum plans start out at up to 100 Mbps*, but at that speed you’ll pay more per month for Spectrum than if you got the AT&T Internet 100 plan. And AT&T’s gig-speed plan is much cheaper than Spectrum’s. The saving grace? Spectrum comes with no equipment fee.
- Compared to Xfinity: AT&T’s DSL plans might be a better deal than Xfinity’s 25 Mbps plan—depending on what speed you can get with AT&T. Otherwise, these two ISPs are neck-and-neck when it comes to price for the speed you get.
- Compared to WOW!: WOW! and AT&T charge a similar price for their 100 Mbps plans. But you’ll pay almost $15 more per month for gig speeds with WOW! compared to the price of AT&T’s gig plan.
AT&T internet speed and data
AT&T’s fiber plans come with fairly straightforward speeds of 300, 500, and 940 Mbps.
But its DSL plans pair you with the fastest speeds you can get in your area—up to 75 or 100 Mbps, depending on which plan you have. That could land you with internet speeds of 10, 18, 25, 50, 75, or 100 Mbps. Confusing, right?
|AT&T Internet up to 75 Mbps||75 Mbps||8 Mbps||1 TB||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 100||100 Mbps||100 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 300||300 Mbps||300 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 500||500 Mbps||500 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plans|
|AT&T Internet 1000||940 Mbps||880 Mbps||Unlimited||View Plan|
The other downside to AT&T DSL internet is that it doesn’t come with symmetrical, or matching, upload speeds. With DSL, you’ll probably see upload speeds of 8–10 Mbps, which might put a damper on your Zoom calls or uploading email attachments while you work from home.
AT&T Fiber, on the other hand, sports symmetrical speeds. So whatever download speed you get, you’ll get the same upload speed to match. (Except for the 940 Mbps plan, which comes with 880 Mbps upload speeds.)
That makes AT&T Fiber the superior choice for anyone running a home office, home business, studying from home, or aiming to become the next YouTube sensation.
Is AT&T internet fast?
We dug through speed test data to find the fastest ISPs in the US, and AT&T ranked 15th out of 38 internet providers.
That’s not a great rank, but it’s not horrible either. And more than likely, AT&T’s DSL internet is bringing down its score since DSL is slower than fiber (and sometimes cable too). Sad fact.
DSL internet rank
Fiber internet rank
15th out of 38 ISPs
3rd out of 10 DSL ISPs
9th out of 20 fiber ISPs
By comparison, Xfinity ranked 7th and Spectrum ranked 14th, while Cox ranked just below AT&T at number 16. (We didn’t have enough data to analyze WOW! Internet’s speeds.)
Download speed range
7th out of 38 ISPs
46.6 out of 100
14th out of 38 ISPs
35.6 out of 100
Up to 100–Up to 1,000 Mbps
15th out of 38 ISPs
33.8 out of 100
16th out of 38 ISPs
33.4 out of 100
But looking at the weighted scores, you’ll see that Spectrum, AT&T, and Cox all scored similarly, while Xfinity jumped ahead by over 10 points. While Xfinity is a likely winner for giving you the speeds you pay for, our guess is that your actual AT&T customer speeds will be all right. Especially if you’re able to get its fiber internet service.
All of AT&T’s fiber internet plans and its Internet 100 plan come with unlimited data, which is the best kind of data. No need to worry about downloading that new movie or updating your video game. You’re in the clear.
But if you’re still on AT&T’s DSL internet, you’ll want to keep an eye on your data usage. Its Up to 75 Mbps plan comes with a 1 TB data cap.
We think most internet users won’t go through a TB of data each month, but if you do, AT&T will charge you an extra $10 for every 50 GB of additional data you use. Or you can splurge on unlimited data for an extra $30 a month.
- AT&T DSL data cap (up to 75 Mbps): 1 TB of data, $10 per 50 GB or $30/month for unlimited data
- AT&T Fiber data cap (100–940 Mbps): Unlimited
AT&T contracts, equipment, and fees
AT&T recently said “Bye, Felicia!” to its contract requirements,2 and we applaud that. The freedom of not having an internet contract is one more worry taken off your plate if you have to move, change your service plan, or just enjoy not getting lassoed into agreements.
When you sign up for AT&T internet, you’ll get a Wi-Fi gateway modem-and-router combo, so chances are you won’t need your own router to set up your Wi-Fi network.
That equipment will come with a $10 per month rental fee too, but as far as rental fees go, it’s one of the cheaper ones we’ve seen.
- AT&T equipment fee: $10 per month
It’s also really nice that you can sign up for internet service and have the equipment delivered straight to your door. A buddy of mine, Andrew, did just this while he was staying in Virginia but needed internet in his new house in Florida.
“They shipped the box on Monday. It came Wednesday, and my girlfriend hooked it up and followed the instructions. The box activated itself, and she was up and running,” he says.
Imagine that: you move in, and your internet is set up before you even get your mattress unloaded. Priorities, right?
Sorry, y’all. There’s no getting away from fees when it comes to internet service, with AT&T or with any other internet provider. Here’s a quick overview of what AT&T might charge you.
- Installation fee: Pay a $35 activation fee if you prefer DIY installation, or call up the pros for $99.
- Early termination fee: AT&T Internet doesn’t have contracts, so you shouldn’t have to pay an early termination fee (ETF). However, its site does state that some plans may require a contract in order to get promotional pricing. If you fall into that bucket, you’re looking at an ETF of $15 for each month left on your contract—up to a total of $180.3
AT&T customer service
Customer service always seems to be a pain point for ISPs, and AT&T is no exception. However, it does score 68 out of 100 on the 2019 American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI)—this makes it one of the top-scoring internet providers.4 That puts it ahead of the average score of 65 out of 100.
68 out of 100
If you need to get chummy with an AT&T rep, social media or chat may be your best option. Here’s how to get a hold of AT&T, and be sure to try some of our tips for dealing with customer service too.
Your internet is slow or just nonexistent, and you want to flip a table. We’ve all been there. We’ve got some tips you can try to fix the issue on your own and we’re crossing our fingers your internet woes are over soon.
Recap: Is AT&T internet any good?
AT&T’s internet offers up some competitive pricing and zippy fiber speeds, but its DSL internet plans leave something to be desired.. Here’s a quick recap of why you might or might not like it.
- Prices and plans: AT&T’s prices either match other ISPs serving similar areas or are cheaper. But its DSL plans quickly lose value if you can’t get max speeds of 75 or 100 Mbps.
- Download speed: With speeds of 300 to 940 Mbps, AT&T Fiber speeds are perfect for a family who works, studies, and has fun online. But AT&T DSL speeds are too slow and too iffy for our liking.
- Data caps: All AT&T Fiber plans come with unlimited data, but if you’ve got AT&T DSL, you’re stuck with a small-ish 1 TB data cap. (Unless you pay for extra data, that is.)
- Contracts, equipment, and fees: We’re happy to say that AT&T Internet comes with no contracts. Plus its equipment rental and self-installation fees are reasonable.
- Customer service: No ISP is known for great customer service, sorry to say. But AT&T rates as one of the better internet providers out there.
AT&T internet prices and plans recap
- AT&T Internet Up to 75 Mbps: $45 per month*, up to 75 Mbps download speeds, 1 TB data cap
- AT&T Internet 100: $45 per month**, 100 Mbps download speeds, unlimited data
- AT&T Fiber Internet 300: $35 per month**, 300 Mbps download speeds, unlimited data
- AT&T Fiber Internet 500: $45 per month**, 500 Mbps download speeds, unlimited data
- AT&T Fiber Internet 1,000: $60 per month**, 940 Mbps download speeds, unlimited data
Do you have more questions about AT&T internet? We can help.
Is AT&T discontinuing DSL?
You might have stumbled upon this announcement that “AT&T no longer offers DSL service.” It’s true that AT&T doesn’t refer to its Up to 75 Mbps plan as DSL anymore, and the ISP is working to update its network to use a DSL and fiber hybrid connection that should improve your speeds.
Usually a DSL-fiber hybrid connection involves installing a fiber network in your neighborhood, then connecting your home to that fiber network with a DSL line.
The good news? Fiber tends to be more reliable and offers faster download and upload speeds than DSL. The bad news? That final DSL connection to your home will still slow your internet speeds down.
Where is AT&T Fiber available?
Right now, AT&T Fiber is available at service addresses in 21 states, mostly in the southern and midwestern US:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
You can check to see if your city has AT&T Fiber on AT&T’s coverage map.
What is AT&T Fixed Wireless?
AT&T’s fixed wireless internet service brings internet to rural areas of the US by beaming your internet connection from an antenna on your roof to a fixed location.
While fixed wireless is certainly an exciting new technology for rural areas missing out on more than one internet option—or areas with no internet options—it isn’t without its downsides. You can learn more about it in our fixed wireless guide.
How do I get AT&T internet for $10 a month?
AT&T has a special internet plan for low-income families called AT&T Access that costs $10 a month and gets you up to 25 Mbps speeds. To qualify for it, you or someone in your household needs to be enrolled in SNAP. (If you live in California, you can qualify for AT&T Access if you’re enrolled in SSI too.)
You can learn more about low-income internet assistance in our guide.
How much is AT&T internet by itself?
If you just need internet, AT&T charges anywhere from $35 to $60 a month for the first 12 months. That cost goes up to $55 to $80 a month in the second year.
If your AT&T internet bill went up in 2020, it might be because your promotional pricing expired. If not, we recommend giving AT&T a call to double-check your bill and explain any confusing fees.
Is AT&T the worst internet provider?
That’s a loaded question! Honestly, there are a lot of pros and cons to every ISP in the US. AT&T internet isn’t the worst—but it isn’t the best either.
Still, when you have few choices for internet providers like most of us do, sometimes you just have to deal with the bad and find a silver lining. (Like at least we’re not hogging the phone line with our AOL CD internet anymore, right?)
Does AT&T offer unlimited home internet?
Yes, AT&T gives you unlimited data with any of its fiber internet plans. Also, if you bundle your AT&T DSL internet with TV service, you’ll get unlimited data.
Is AT&T Internet 1,000 worth it?
The AT&T Fiber Internet 1,000* plan is worth it if you’ve got a large household of internet users who enjoy streaming and gaming. The plan’s gig speeds are also great if you run a home business or have a lot of smart devices working in the background.
And if you upload large files, like YouTube videos or RAW image files, the Internet 1,000* plan’s symmetrical upload speeds of 880 Mbps are a life saver.