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Top Internet Service Providers for Streaming in 2020

best internet for streaming

Whether you like jamming the latest music on Spotify, love streaming on Netflix or you do live broadcasting on Quibi or Twitch, Internet speed matters. That’s why in 2020, you need to search for the best Internet provider for streaming.

What Internet Speed Do I Need?

Before moving on to Internet Providers, it’s important to know what internet speed you require for streaming various types of content. Here are the speed recommendations for different streaming platforms:

Streaming Services Recommended Speed
Netflix 3 to 25 Mbps
Hulu 3 to 16 Mbps
Disney+ 5 to 25 Mbps
HBO Now 5 Mbps
4K videos 25 Mbps
Twitch 4 Mbps download speed and 6 Mbps upload speed

What’s the Best Internet for Streaming?

Ideally, the best Internet for streaming is fiber optic. However, if your area only providers such as cable, DSL, or satellite Internet services, that any of these connections would work too. You must have at least 25 Mbps for best streaming. This speed recommendation is for one device only.

Now let’s dig into each type of internet service names of popular providers you can trust:

Fiber Optic Internet

Fiber optic Internet is known for throwing blazing speed up to 1000 Mbps. unfortunately, fiber optic covers only 35% of the United States. It may or not be available in your region. Here are some options of fiber internet providers for streaming:

Verizon FiOS

Verizon FIOS offers 3-speed tiers. Each plan offers enough speed for streaming, playing video games, web surfing, and working from home. Check out their plans:

Plan Starting Price Download Speed Upload Speed
200/200 $39.99 per month 200 Mbps 200 Mbps
400/400 $55.99 per month 400 Mbps 400 Mbps
FIOS GIgabit $79.99 per month Up to 940 Mbps Up to 880 Mbps

 

AT&T

AT&T offers two internet plans only. If your home isn’t in one of the big cities, you will be stuck with their DSL plan which offers up to 100 Mbps speed.  These are your options:

Plan Starting Price Download Speed
Internet 100 $49.99 per month 100 Mbps
1 GIG Internet $49.99 per month Up to 1000 Mbps

 

Century Link

Century Link is known for its DSL and fiber Internet plans. The fiber plan starts at $65 offering up to 940 Mbps of download speed.

EarthLink

EarthLink was traditionally known for DSL services but the provider has recently launched fiber optic internet too which is now available in 21 states. The HyperLink Internet service is based on the fiber connection. Here are the speed tiers you can choose from:

Plan Starting Price Download Speed
HyperLink 50 $49.95 per month 50 Mbps
HyperLink 80 $69.95 per month 80 Mbps
HyperLink 100 $79.95 per month 100 Mbps
HyperLink 200 $89.95 per month 200 Mbps
HyperLink 1 Gbps $99.95 per month 1000 Mbps

 

Cable Internet

Cable Internet service is capable of achieving fiber-optic like speed, thanks to the tech upgrades. It’s almost available everywhere in the country. The only downside is when there’s too much traffic, the speed suffers.

These are the leading names in cable Internet service providers:

Cox

Cox offers promising speed at an affordable monthly price. Internet Preferred plan is best for larger families and streaming. If you are a student, you may qualify for Cox free Internet. In case you don’t, here are your speed options:

Plans Price Download Speed
Internet Starter 10 $29.99 per month 50 Mbps
Internet Essential 30 $39.00 per month 190 Mbps
Internet Preferred 150 $59.99 per month 190 Mbps
Internet Ultimate $79.99 per month 240 Mbps
Gigablast $99.99 per month 290 Mbps

 

Optimum

Optimum Cable Internet plans are well celebrated among households in NYC. It covers 12 million subscribers most of whom live in New York. Its coverage extends to other states too. These are the Internet plans provided by Optimum:

Plans Starting Price Download Speed
Optimum 20 $29.99 per month 20 Mbps
Optimum 200 $49.99 per month 200 Mbps
Optimum 300 $39.99 per month 300 Mbps
Optimum 400 $64.99 per month 400 Mbps
Optimum 1 Gig $69.99 per month Up to 940 Mbps

 

Spectrum

Spectrum keeps things fast and simple. It offers three tiers to choose from. Internet Ultra is their best-valued plan. Amidst the COVID-19 outbreak, Spectrum Internet for students is available for free. This offer is for K-12 and college students only who haven’t done business with the provider before. For the rest of us, these are the plans to choose from for streaming:

Plans Starting Price Download Speed
Spectrum Internet $49.99 per month 100 Mbps
Spectrum Internet Ultra $69.99 per month 400 Mbps
Spectrum Internet GIG $104.99 per month 940 Mbps

DSL Internet

DSL internet offers up to 50 Mbps of download speed. Signals over longer ranges are lower. Therefore, be careful when choosing a DSL provider. Look for the best internet speed for gaming and streaming. Here are some popular names in DSL Internet providers along with their plans:

CenturyLink

CenturyLink promises the same price for all its DSL Internet plans. Different speed tiers are available to meet the Internet needs of different types of users. The provider doesn’t bind you with a contract. For streaming purposes, choose it’s 100 Mbps plan. Check out your options:

Plans Starting Price Download Speed
Price for Life 15  Mbps $49.00 per month 15 Mbps
Price for Life 20 Mbps $49.00 per month 20 Mbps
Price for Life 40 Mbps $49.00 per month 40 Mbps
Price for Life 100 Mbps $49.00 per month 100 Mbps

Apart from CenturyLink, AT&T, Earth Link, and Verizon have DSL plans too.

 

Satellite Internet

Satellite is great for delivering HD content but signal and latency issues make it a less favorable choice for streaming. There are some areas where DSL service is not available. In that case, choose satellite as the last resort.

Don’t worry, HughesNet and Viasat have some great Satellite for customers living in remote areas. Let’s have a closer look at the plans of both providers:

HughesNet

HughesNet offers extensive satellite coverage. All its plans have the same download speed. You can choose any that fits your budget. Here are the options:

Plans Starting Price Download Speed
10 GB $59.99 per month Up to 25 Mbps
20 GB $69.99 per month Up to 25 Mbps
30 GB $99.99 per month Up to 25 Mbps
50 GB $149.99 per month Up to 25 Mbps

 

Viasat

Formerly known as Exede, Viasat the second largest provider of satellite Internet. You will find a variety of speed tiers and the prices are affordable. Choose from the following options:

Plans Starting Price Download Speed
Liberty 12 $30.00 per month Up to 12 Mbps
Liberty 25 $50.00 per month Up to 12 Mbps
Liberty 50 $75.00 per month Up to 12 Mbps
Unlimited Silver 25 $70.00 per month Up to 25 Mbps
Unlimited Gold 30 $100.00 per month Up to 30 Mbps
Unlimited Gold 50 $100.00 per month Up to 50 Mbps
Unlimited Platinum 100 $150.00 per month Up to 100 Mbps

Some Tips to Boost Streaming Speed

Sometimes, you have the best speed but your streaming is being interrupted. Follow these tips to boost the speed:

  • Disconnect unnecessary devices
  • Use Ethernet cable for faster connection
  • Move closer to the router
  • Lower the streaming resolution

You might want to ask this question “is streaming illegal from the content provider chosen.” You could be streaming from an illegal site without knowing. Buffering speed could affect in that case. But if you choose legal streaming service providers like Netflix, Hulu, or Disney Plus, you won’t experience speed issues.

So what’s The Best Service for Streaming?

It’s no brainer, the best service for streaming is fiber. It’s fast and reliable. It may be a little expensive as compared to DSL and cable, but it’s worth it. It will offer you the best Internet speed for gaming and streaming. You can say goodbye to all the frustration and lag if you have a reliable fibre-optic Internet connection.

Of course, you don’t always get the speed you signed up for, but you are going to enjoy an uninterrupted streaming experience for sure.

Frequently Asked Questions

To make the right decision and enjoy a great streaming experience, here are some Frequently Asked Questions answered for you:

What is the best Internet provider for streaming?

Verizon FiOS, AT&T, and EarthLink are the leading names in the best providers for streaming.

How much speed do I need for gaming and streaming?

5 to 7 Mbps to download speed is enough for both activities. For larger households, it’s recommended to get up to 100 Mbps for meeting everyone’s streaming needs. Ideally, to avoid buffering and lag time, a single user should have 25 Mbps bandwidth available.

How do I increase streaming speed?

Reboot your home network. You might also want to restart your PC or streaming service. Try moving closer to the Wi-Fi to increase the speed. If nothing works, call your ISP.

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