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Brightspeed Internet Review

New provider offers basic DSL plans—with fiber on the way.


Price: $50.00–$79.00/mo.*
Speeds: 40–940 Mbps
Data cap: None
Compare all plans

Provider star ratings are based on user reviews and our independent customer satisfaction survey.

Our Brightspeed internet review

Brightspeed is a brand new internet service provider (ISP) that formed as part of a $7.5 billion deal for Apollo Global Management (Brightspeed’s parent company) to acquire CenturyLink’s DSL customer base. Most of Brightspeed’s customers are former CenturyLink customers whose DSL plans carried over to the new provider when the business deal officially went through in early October 2022.

This new provider’s offerings are similar to CenturyLink’s at the moment. Although it has plans to build up fiber networks across its 20-state footprint over the next four years, Brightspeed mostly offers basic DSL internet for now, with slow to modest speeds at a standard price. There aren’t any contracts on Brightspeed plans, and there are no data caps, giving you a bit of flexibility with an otherwise straightforward deal.


  • DSL speeds only
  • Affordable price for DSL plan
  • No data caps or contracts


  • Limited fiber availability
  • Generic offerings

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Compare Brightspeed internet plans and pricing

PackagePriceSpeedView on Brightspeed site
Internet DSL$50.00/mo.Up to 40 MbpsShop Plans
Fiber 200$59.00/mo.200 MbpsShop Plans
Fiber 500$69.00/mo.500 MbpsShop Plans
Fiber 1 Gig$79.00/mo.940 MbpsShop Plans

Brightspeed’s speeds: What’s best for you?

Brightspeed has big plans to launch fiber networks across its 20-state service area. But for now, most customers are going to be limited to DSL plans, which usually top out at 100 Mbps but often deliver even slower speeds.

The provider also has a gigabit fiber internet plan, but it has extremely limited availability and likely won’t be widely available for another year or so at least as Brightspeed works to expand its fiber network.

Brightspeed data caps

There are no data caps on any Brightspeed plans. You can use the internet all you want without worrying about overage fees or throttled speeds.

Brightspeed availability

You can find Brightspeed in 20 US states, all of them areas where you used to be able to get CenturyLink DSL service. Here’s a full list of states:

Where to find Brightspeed internet service

  • Texas
  • Oklahoma
  • Louisiana
  • Tennessee
  • Arkansas
  • Mississippi
  • Alabama
  • Georgia
  • South Carolina
  • North Carolina
  • Virginia
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • Ohio
  • Michigan
  • Kansas
  • Missouri
  • Indiana
  • Wisconsin
  • Illinois

Is Brightspeed internet available where you live?

Enter your zip code below to see a list of the top internet service providers available in your area.

Our favorite plan: Brightspeed’s DSL internet plan is the only one widely available across the 20 states where the provider has service. While it’s not the most spectacular plan in the world, it’s a great option for rural users because it doesn’t cost too much and comes with unlimited data. You don’t have to sign up for an annual contract and the speeds are solid so long as you can regularly get 25 Mbps or faster.

DSL has been waning in popularity in recent years, but it’s the only way to get fast internet in many small towns and rural areas. And we highly recommend Brightspeed if you live in a place where your only other option would be pricey satellite internet.

Brightspeed internet fees

Equipment Fee$15.00/mo. for modem
Installation Fee$99.00

Brightspeed charges fairly standard rates for installation and equipment. Most internet providers charge around $10 to $15 a month to rent a modem that can go with its service, and Brightspeed’s $15 a month fee is fair enough.

Buy your own modem/router to cut extra fees

If you want to save some money on extra fees, we recommend buying your own modem and router. TP-Link’s Archer AX10 is the best router for Brightspeed plans because it’s efficient, easy to use, and affordable.

Here are some other options we recommend if you want to buy your own router for Brightspeed:

Brightspeed internet installation, equipment, and contracts

Brightspeed doesn’t share a lot of details about its installation options—the provider is brand new and most of its customers had their internet installed when they signed up previously through CenturyLink.

Installation costs a fairly standard fee of $99. But even that price may change as Brightspeed revamps its plans and prices in the coming months and properly launches itself as an internet provider available for customers.

Brightspeed internet contracts

Brightspeed doesn’t have any contracts on its internet plans. You can cancel any time; no need to worry about early termination fees.

Brightspeed internet customer ratings

Overall RatingReliability RatingCustomer Service RatingSpeed RatingPrice Rating
Brightspeed customer satisfaction rating3.
Average rating*3.7/53.7/53.6/53.8/53.4/5

Since Brightspeed is a new internet provider and 2023 is the first year it appears in the latest edition of our  annual customer satisfaction survey. Brightspeed scored below average in the survey, but something to consider is that while Brightspeed offers fiber plans, the bulk of it’s customers have DSL. This internet type provides slower speeds at a price point that many pay for decent fiber plans and this could contribute to customers rating Brightspeed with lower than average scores. 

See what other Brightspeed customers are saying

We like to collect our own data around customer experience—and we’re especially eager to hear from Brightspeed customers since the provider is brand new. If you’re a new Brightspeed customer, take a moment to fill our Customer Review form and let us know about your experience.

Read Reviews

How Brightspeed compares to the competition

ProviderPlan price rangeSpeeds (range)User rating*Order online
Xfinity$30.00–$120.00./mo.75–2,000 Mbps3.7/5View Plans
Spectrum$49.99–$89.99/mo.Up to 300–1,000 Mbps3.7/5View Plans
AT&T$55.00–$250.00/mo.Up to 25–5,000 Mbps3.7/5

As the new kid on the block, Brightspeed has some stiff competition to face off against—and honestly, the rivals look like the better picks in most cases. Cable providers like Xfinity and Spectrum have better customer satisfaction ratings, get you faster speeds, and have lower prices on some plans.

AT&T meanwhile has both fiber and DSL internet, whereas Brightspeed mainly has DSL. Fiber is faster, more reliable, and much more cost effective considering that you can get a fiber plan that’s many times faster than a DSL plan for basically the same price. However, Brightspeed’s DSL is slightly cheaper than AT&T’s DSL and gets you the same speeds. So that’s a bright spot.

Is Brightspeed internet right for you?

If you came to Brightspeed as a CenturyLink customer, we think it’s well worth sticking around. You’re basically getting the same service on the same network for the same price. And if you’re a brand new customer, Brightspeed may be worth a try if you live in a small city or rural area where otherwise you’d be stuck with satellite internet. Brightspeed’s prices are fair and you don’t have to worry about contracts or data caps.

But we’re still a little curious to see how Brightspeed shapes out for the long term. In a world of novel 5G approaches and expanding satellite options, it’s taking a relatively traditional approach with its $2 billion plan to unfurl a fiber-optic network in the coming years. We’re not sure when fiber will actually be available from this provider, but until then, most customers have to settle for sluggish DSL service.

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FAQ about Brightspeed

What is Brightspeed?

Brightspeed is a new internet provider owned by the parent company Apollo Global Management. It provides DSL internet and has plans to unfurl a larger, nationwide fiber network over the next four years.

Apollo recently acquired the DSL customers and infrastructure of Lumen Technologies (the parent company of CenturyLink). Brightspeed now operates that DSL infrastructure, which is spread across 20 states in the South and Midwest, as well as in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Brightspeed is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.


Our editorial team bases our analyses on customer input from our annual customer satisfaction survey, results from our speed test tool, and proprietary internet service provider data on speeds and pricing. To strengthen our research, we look closely at provider contracts to get hard-to-find information on price hikes, data caps, and extra fees, and we keep tabs on the latest news reports and online reviews. When applicable, we also rely on our personal experiences testing these services.