Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL

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DecisionData Team
August 26, 2020

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL

Spectrum Cable and CenturyLink DSL are among the most popular internet providers in the country. Their high-speed internet plans share a number of similarities, but they also have a few key differences. In this article, we’ll compare Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL to help you decide which company is right for you.

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL comparison

ProviderInternet TypeStarting PriceData CapsSpeeds (Mbps)ContractsAvailability
Cable$44.99NoneUp to 940NoCheck Availability
DSL$491 TBUp to 100NoCheck Availability

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL data comparison

Spectrum Cable

Spectrum Cable is a popular internet provider because their internet plans don’t have data caps. And no matter how much data you use, you’ll never be subjected to overage charges. That means Spectrum Cable’s internet plans are ideal for heavy internet users. Whether you want to stream and game, or just use the internet for browsing, you won’t run into issues with your data usage.

CenturyLink DSL

CenturyLink DSL, on the other hand, has a one terabyte data cap for most of its high-speed internet plans. Only customers who have a residential fiber gigabit plan get unlimited data. However, if you exceed the data limit, you won’t get charged. After a first offense, you’ll be given the option to upgrade to a higher-speed plan. If you exceed the limit for three months in one year, CenturyLink can disconnect your service. One terabyte of data will be enough for pretty much anyone, including gamers, streamers and remote workers.

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Internet speeds

Spectrum Cable

Spectrum Cable’s internet speeds range from 100 Mbps to 940 Mbps and can be transmitted over fiber or cable networks. However, keep in mind that Spectrum’s fiber internet is currently only available for enterprise customers. Spectrum’s lowest speed plan at 100 Mbps is fast enough for a single user to game, stream and browse the internet without interruption. 

It’s more than enough for people who use the internet for light browsing or photo sharing. However, homes with multiple users will probably want a higher speed plan that runs at 400 Mbps or 940 Mbps. Spectrum Cable will throttle your internet speed if network congestion becomes an issue, which is most likely to happen during peak evening times.

CenturyLink DSL

CenturyLink DSL’s internet plans are slightly slower than Spectrum’s with a range of 15 Mbps to 100 Mbps. All of CenturyLink’s plans can handle 1080p streaming, photo sharing, music downloading and gaming, even at the lowest speeds. 

Heavy internet users who want to stream or game without interruption should look at a fiber-optic internet plan from CenturyLink, which offers speeds of up to 940 Mbps. Occasional internet users or single-person households can suffice with a 20 Mbps or 40 Mbps plan. Like Spectrum, CenturyLink DSL will throttle customer’s internet if needed.

Speed Winner

Spectrum

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Availability

Spectrum

Spectrum Cable is widely available in the United States, with coverage in 41 states. Among those states, most cities get full coverage. Those states include:

Check your zip code to see if Spectrum Cable is available to you.

CenturyLink DSL

CenturyLink DSL has good coverage, but not quite as extensive as Spectrum Cable. CenturyLink DSL offers internet plans in 36 states, and most cities can access full coverage. These states include:

Check your zip code to see if CenturyLink DSL is available to you.

Availability Winner

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Customer service

Spectrum Cable

59

Spectrum Cable has a score of 59 out of 100 from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). That’s considered to be a good score, which is slightly below the industry average of 62. However, other customer reviews suggest that Spectrum Cable struggles with customer service. According to Consumer Affairs, the company has 1,215 ratings with an average of just two and a half stars.

CenturyLink DSL

59

Looking at ASCI ratings, CenturyLink DSL and Spectrum Cable are ranked similarly. CenturyLink DSL is ranked just above Spectrum, with the same score of 59. CenturyLink DSL is ranked slightly higher because their score has improved over the past few years, while Spectrum Cable’s score has gone down. CenturyLink also has better reviews from Consumer Affairs, with an average rating of nearly three stars across 2,811 reviews

CenturyLink DSL

Customer Service Winner

CenturyLink

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Bundled services

Spectrum Cable and CenturyLink DSL both offer TV and home phone services, in addition to internet plans. Below are the most popular service bundles that Spectrum Cable and CenturyLink DSL offer.

Spectrum Cable

Triple Play Select

Plan Includes

  • Internet speed offered: 200+ Mbps
  • Number of channels offered: 125+ with free HD
  • What’s included in the bundle: TV, internet and phone (unlimited calling)

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Triple Play Silver

Plan Includes

  • Internet speed offered: 200+ Mbps
  • Number of channels offered: 175+ channels with free HD
  • What’s included in the bundle: TV, internet and phone (unlimited calling)

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Triple Play Gold

Plan Includes

  • Internet speed offered: 200+ Mbps
  • Number of channels offered: 200+ channels with free HD
  • What’s included in the bundle: TV, internet and phone (unlimited calling)

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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CenturyLink DSL

Internet & Phone Bundle

Plan Includes

  • Internet speed offered: Up to 940 Mbps (only with fiber)
  • Number of channels offered: None
  • What’s included in the bundle: Internet and phone (unlimited calling)

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Affordability

Price is likely a deciding factor in which internet provider you choose. To determine which provider offers the best rates, we looked at prices for the cheapest plans, equipment costs and added fees.

Spectrum Cable

Spectrum Cable’s cheapest internet plan is $49.99 per month. There is no charge for one modem, although additional taxes and fees may apply. Spectrum Cable’s fastest internet plan is pricey, at $109.99 per month. But in addition to a free modem, customers with the fastest plan also get free antivirus software with Security Suite.

CenturyLink DSL

CenturyLink DSL’s lowest tier internet plan costs $49 per month. In addition, customers can choose to rent a modem for up to $15 per month, or purchase one for $150. If you want to have a technician install your equipment, you’ll have to pay a maximum of $125 depending on where you live.

Affordability Winner

Spectrum

Frequently Asked Questions

Which internet service provider is best for residential use?

For residential customers, CenturyLink DSL is the best provider. Although you’ll pay for a modem and installation, you can get the highest tier internet plan for just $65 per month, which is much more affordable than Spectrum Cable. Keep in mind that while CenturyLink DSL does have data caps, you aren’t likely to surpass the limit. And if you do, you won’t get charged a penalty fee.

Which internet service provider is best for business use?

Businesses, on the other hand, will benefit more from Spectrum Cable. Spectrum Cable has no data limits, which means you can have many people using the network at the same time without disruptions. If you want the fastest internet speeds, you’ll pay over $100, but you won’t have to pay for a modem or any extra fees. You also get free antivirus security software, which can be beneficial for a business.

Spectrum Cable vs. CenturyLink DSL: Which is right for you?

Overall, Spectrum Cable and CenturyLink DSL are both great internet providers. If you’re looking for speed and no data caps, Spectrum Cable is a good option for you. Spectrum is going to be the better choice for heavy internet users, streamers and gamers. They also offer a number of bundles which can help you save money on your home phone and TV services.

CenturyLink DSL is a better option for people who don’t use the internet constantly because they do have data limits. This provider is also a solid option if you care about good customer service. Depending on your plan, you could pay slightly more or slightly less than what Spectrum charges, so it’s important to know what your average data usage is before selecting a plan.

We supplied the data; now, the decision is yours.

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