Best Internet Providers in Phoenix, Arizona – CNET

Whether you’re a snowbird and spend a few months in Phoenix or live in the city year-round, you’ll want the best internet service available for your home. We recommend CenturyLink Fiber, or Quantum Fiber in some areas, as the best option for most Phoenix households, but Cox, Verizon 5G or other providers may suit your needs as well.

CNET considers speeds, pricing, customer service and overall value to recommend the best internet service in Phoenix in a variety of categories. Verizon 5G Home Internet is the cheapest option, offering a compelling promotional deal of $35 per month for up to 300 megabits per second download speed. Three providers — Cox, Quantum Fiber and Verizon 5G Home Internet — offer the fastest available internet speeds in Phoenix with gigabit speeds available to many homes. 

With potentially a few home internet choices available, how do you know which is best for your home? You’ll want to consider what internet speeds you need and how many devices will be connected to your internet when you compare providers.

Best internet options in Phoenix

You’ll find our picks for the best Phoenix ISPs below, along with service details and what makes them stand out. Further down the page, you’ll find a list of other, but perhaps less available or desirable, internet providers, followed by a look at the cheapest and fastest internet plans in Phoenix. All prices listed on this page reflect available discounts for setting up paperless billing. If you decide not to go with automatic monthly payments, your price will be higher.

Note: The prices, speeds and features detailed in the article text may differ from those listed in the product detail cards, which represent providers’ national offerings. Your particular internet service options — including prices and speeds — depend on your address and may differ from those detailed here.

You probably know it better as CenturyLink, but with the company’s rebranding under Lumen Technologies came a name change for the fiber-optic side of the business to Quantum Fiber. It doesn’t seem to have quite reached the Phoenix area yet, but be prepared for an eventual name change.

Check with CenturyLink

Cox is your go-to cable internet provider in Phoenix. You’ll have more plan options with Cox compared to CenturyLink, but, other than availability, that’s about the only advantage Cox has.

Check with Cox

Availability: Verizon 5G home internet is available throughout most of the Phoenix area, according to the provider’s 5G Ultra Wideband coverage map.

Check with Verizon

Comparing all Phoenix internet service providers

The three internet providers listed above aren’t the only ISPs in the Phoenix area. They’re just the ones that, if I were shopping for internet in Montezuma Heights, for example, I would start with first. That said, there aren’t many other practical options available to Phoenix residents. We’ve listed details of ISPs potentially available at your address below for quick comparison.

Top Phoenix internet providers

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Source: CNET analysis of provider data

The providers below are also worth a look but may not present the same value or speed potential.

CenturyLink: Technically, I already mentioned CenturyLink/Quantum Fiber, but I’m referring to its DSL service this time. CenturyLink’s DSL service is available to nearly every household in the Phoenix area not eligible for Quantum Fiber. Speeds are largely impressive for DSL service, ranging from 60, 80 or 100Mbps in many neighborhoods. As such, CenturyLink is a solid choice for a basic, low-hassle connection, but if you want faster speeds, you’ll have to turn to Cox or Verizon 5G.

T-Mobile Home Internet: While Verizon’s 5G home internet network caters primarily to larger cities, such as Phoenix, T-Mobile focuses more on suburban and rural areas. At $50 per month for speeds ranging from 72 to 245Mbps, T-Mobile is an ideal choice for those living outside the city where satellite or DSL is the only connection available. However, if you’re within Phoenix, you’ll find faster speeds for roughly the same price from other providers.

Triad Wireless: Local fixed wireless provider Triad Wireless beams internet signals all over the Phoenix area for business, education and residential internet service. Max residential internet speeds can reach 300Mbps, which is impressive for a fixed wireless network. Since fixed wireless requires a direct line of sight to a nearby transmitter, you’ll need to have a serviceability check before being able to sign up. Call 602-426-0542 or visit the Triad Wireless residential internet page to inquire about serviceability and pricing at your address.

Satellite internet: HughesNet and Viasat are always options for home internet, so long as you have a clear view of the southern sky. But satellite is often a last resort for internet, and with Cox, CenturyLink, 5G internet and other choices in Phoenix, the high pricing, high latency and low data allowances of satellite internet are easy to pass on.

Cheap internet options in Phoenix

For a cheap, basic internet connection in Phoenix, consider Cox’s Starter 25 or CenturyLink Fiber’s 100 or 200Mbps plan. Both plans start at around $30 per month (though you may have to accept a one-year contract with Cox). If you’re a Verizon mobile customer, you’ll also want to see if you can get Verizon’s 5G Home plan for the discounted rate of $35 per month.

Cheapest internet plans in Phoenix

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Source: CNET analysis of provider data

Internet for low-income households in Phoenix

The Affordable Connectivity Program grants qualifying households $30 per month towards home internet service. Those on tribal lands, such as the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Community northeast of Phoenix, can receive up to $75 per month. Here’s how to apply for the ACP.

Additionally, Cox offers an affordable internet plan, Connect2Compete, to qualifying households with at least one student enrolled in grades K-12. The plan offers download speeds up to 100Mbps for $10 per month with no contracts or equipment fees. No credit check or social security number is required to apply. For households without children, Cox also offers ConnectAssist, which features 100Mbps download speeds for $30 a month.

How fast is broadband in Phoenix?

How fast is internet in Phoenix? Speed test averages indicate that home internet in Phoenix is slower than the rest of Arizona and below the national average. Don’t let that discourage you; faster max speeds, up to 940Mbps are available throughout much of the Phoenix area.

Multigig internet plans are popping up all over the US but haven’t quite reached Phoenix yet. Single gig plans, with download speeds up to 940Mbps, are the fastest you’ll find in the Phoenix area from Quantum Fiber, Cox and possibly Verizon 5G. While perhaps not as exciting as multigig service, that’s still plenty of speed for a virtually unlimited number of connected devices.

What’s a good internet speed? 

Most internet connection plans can now handle basic productivity and communication tasks. If you’re looking for an internet plan that can accommodate videoconferencing, streaming video or gaming, you’ll have a better experience with a more robust connection. Here’s an overview of the recommended minimum download speeds for various applications, according to the FCC. Note that these are only guidelines — and that internet speed, service and performance vary by connection type, provider and address.

  • 0 to 5Mbps allows you to tackle the basics — browsing the internet, sending and receiving email, streaming low-quality video.
  • 5 to 40Mbps gives you higher-quality video streaming and videoconferencing.
  • 40 to 100Mbps should give one user sufficient bandwidth to satisfy the demands of modern telecommuting, video streaming and online gaming. 
  • 100 to 500Mbps allows one to two users to engage in high-bandwidth activities like videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming. simultaneously. 
  • 500 to 1,000Mbps allows three or more users to engage in high-bandwidth activities like videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming simultaneously. 

Fastest internet plans in Phoenix

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Source: CNET analysis of provider data

With fast speeds and numerous devices for streaming and gaming, it’s easy to use quite a bit of data each month. You won’t have to worry about your data usage with most Phoenix internet providers, but if you’ve got Cox, you may want to keep an eye on it. 

Cox’s 1.25TB monthly data cap is generous, but going over could be costly, to the tune of up to $100 in added fees. I wouldn’t fret too much over the data cap, though. With reasonable internet activity, most households won’t come close to using that much data. For context, the average household used roughly 435MB of data per month during the height of the pandemic.

Phoenix home internet recap

CenturyLink/Quantum Fiber, Cox and Verizon 5G are likely your best internet options in terms of speed and overall value. Quantum Fiber would be my first recommendation due to a fiber connection’s reliability and symmetrical download/upload speed capabilities, not to mention CenturyLink’s favorable service terms. 

Cox is a solid choice for cable internet, especially if you plan to bundle internet and TV, but pricing is a bit high compared to other providers, and you’ll have to deal with contracts and a data cap. 

As for Verizon 5G home internet, the value comes down to what speeds are available at your address, but the service is worth checking out if you’re looking for an alternative to CenturyLink or Cox. 

Other providers may be available throughout the Phoenix area, including T-Mobile, Triad Wireless, HughesNet and Viasat. Still, given the other available options throughout the city, I’d consider these your secondary choices for home internet service.

How CNET chose the best internet providers in Phoenix

Internet service providers are numerous and regional. Unlike the latest smartphone, laptop, router or kitchen tool, it’s impractical to personally test every ISP in a given city. So what’s our approach? We start by researching the pricing, availability and speed information drawing on our own historical ISP data, the provider sites and mapping information from the Federal Communications Commission at

But it doesn’t end there. We go to the FCC’s website to check our data and ensure we’re considering every ISP that provides service in an area. We also input local addresses on provider websites to find specific options for residents. To evaluate how happy customers are with an ISP’s service, we look at sources including the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power. ISP plans and prices are subject to frequent changes; all information provided is accurate as of the time of publication. 

Once we have this localized information, we ask three main questions: 

  • Does the provider offer access to reasonably fast internet speeds? 
  • Do customers get decent value for what they’re paying? 
  • Are customers happy with their service? 

While the answer to those questions is often layered and complex, the providers who come closest to “yes” on all three are the ones we recommend. 

When it comes to selecting the cheapest internet service — the criteria are relatively simple. We look for the service package with the lowest monthly fee, though we also take into consideration promotional rates and price per megabit. 

As for choosing the fastest internet service, we look at provider throughput. Most often, that means a fiber-optic service. That said, fiber availability may be limited to a smaller percentage of addresses. 

To explore our process in more depth, visit our explainer on how we test ISPs.

Phoenix internet FAQs

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