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AT&T vs. Frontier: Which Internet Provider Is Best for You?

Both providers offer fiber and DSL internet, but AT&T may have the upper hand in your area with pricing and variety.

  • Best for price
    • Price: $55.00–$250.00/mo.
    • Customer rating: 3.9
    • Speed: 25–5,000 Mbps*
    • Internet type: Fiber and fixed wireless
    • Data cap: None–1 TB
    • Contract: Monthly
  • Best for simplicity
    • Price: $39.99–$154.99/mo.
    • Customer rating: 3.5
    • Speed: 500–5,000 Mbps*
    • Internet type: DSL, fiber
    • Data cap: None
    • Contract: Optional 1-year contract with Visa Reward Card

Compare AT&T and Frontier head to head

AT&T is the best choice for fiber internet. It has four fiber plans at great prices, making it one of the best internet services for gaming. Frontier is no slouch in delivering fast fiber speeds, but its fiber network is far less available than AT&T’s. Both primarily deliver DSL internet if fiber isn’t in your area, although Frontier has the upper hand in megabit-per-dollar value.


  • Great fiber internet prices
  • Excellent reliability and customer service


  • Data caps on some plans


  • Unlimited data
  • Wide DSL availability


  • Data caps on some plans

Want to know if AT&T or Frontier are in your area? Take a look by typing in your zip code below.

Plans and pricing: AT&T vs. Frontier

Overall, AT&T has a larger footprint across the US than Frontier. Both primarily offer DSL internet as they slowly expand their fiber networks. But, if you want a variety of options—including fixed wireless—then AT&T is the way to go.

AT&T plans and pricing

PackagePriceSpeedTypeOrder online
AT&T Internet 300$55.00/mo.**300MbpsFiber
AT&T Internet 500$65.00/mo.**500MbpsFiber
AT&T Internet 1000$80.00/mo.*1,000MbpsFiber
AT&T Internet 2000$150.00/mo.*2,000MbpsFiber
AT&T Internet 5000$250.00/mo.#5,000MbpsFiber
AT&T Fixed Wireless$59.99/mo.*10–25MbpsFixed Wireless
AT&T Internet Air$55.00/mo.*40–140MbpsFixed Wireless/5G

AT&T is primarily a DSL internet provider—for now, at least. AT&T plans to reach 30 million locations with its fiber network by 2025.7

AT&T’s two DSL plans are pretty cheap in terms of megabits per dollar when you compare them against Frontier. If fiber isn’t in your area, then AT&T’s DSL is the way to go unless you have access to cable internet.

AT&T’s fiber plans are reasonably priced too. It also offers incredibly fast speeds over fiber—5G Internet delivers the fastest speeds from a major provider in the United States. You likely won’t need 5,000 Mbps speeds (unless you’re mining cryptocurrency). The Internet 300 plan will be a much better deal, although the price is still higher than what you can get from Frontier.

Frontier plans and pricing

PackagePriceSpeedTypeOrder online
Frontier Internet (DSL)$64.99/mo.§
w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
Call for details|DSLView Plans
Frontier Fiber 500$39.99/mo.
w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
500MbpsFiberView Plans
Frontier Fiber 1 Gig$59.99/mo.
w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
1,000MbpsFiberView Plans
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig$99.99/mo. **
w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
2,000MbpsFiberView Plans
Frontier Fiber 5 Gig$154.99/mo. #
w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill
5,000MbpsFiberView Plans

Like AT&T, Frontier is mostly a DSL internet provider with some fiber. Both are working to swap out old DSL lines with the faster fiber connections, but if DSL is all you can get, then AT&T is the way to go.

Frontier goes head-to-head with AT&T at speeds of 500 Mbps and higher, but Frontier has the upper-hand when it comes to price. Frontier’s 500 Mbps plan is $25 cheaper than AT&T. Frontier’s gig and multi-gig plans are also less expensive than similar plans offered by At&T

Overall, Frontier aims to reach 10 million locations with its fiber service by 2025. The company recently launched a 5 Gbps fiber plan and expects to reach 10 Gbps in the near future.8

HSI badge deals

Deal and promotions: AT&T vs. Frontier

Order a fiber internet plan to get a reward card worth $100 or $150. You get the $100 card with the 300 Mbps and 500 plans and the $150 card with the gigabit plan or faster.

Order a qualifying Frontier fiber internet plan to get a free installation and a free rental of the Amazon eero Pro 6 or 6E router. You also get a $200 Visa Reward Gift Card if you sign up for the Fiber 2 Gig plan.

Get the Deal

Extra fees: AT&T vs. Frontier

Equipment FeeInstallation FeeOther Fees


  • $10.00/mo. for DSL
  • Up to $99.00 for professional
  • Free for self-install
  • $15.00/mo. (early termination, contract plans only)
  • Up to $9.00 (late payment)
  • Frontier
  • No charge for DSL modem or wireless gateway
  • $50 expert installation for fiber plans
  • $85.00 expert installation for DSL
  • $10.00 disconnect fee
  • $9.99 equipment fee for extra devices
  • $5.00/mo. no AutoPay fee
  • $2.99/mo. Paper bill fee
  • Frontier’s monthly rates include autopay and paperless billing discounts, so expect to pay $7.99 extra each month if you opt out of both. If anything, Frontier’s Internet Infrastructure Surcharge fee should be a little alarming, as you’re investing in maintenance and other network infrastructure costs.1

    Want to know if AT&T or Frontier are in your area? Take a look by typing in your zip code below.

    Customer ratings: AT&T vs. Frontier

    Overall RatingSpeed RatingPriceReliabilityCustomer Service

    AT&T takes the fourth spot for overall satisfaction among the 15 national internet providers in our latest customer satisfaction survey. Its strongest point is price satisfaction, which isn’t surprising given the speeds you get for the money. In fact, it has a better pricing score than the national average. AT&T also ranks in the top five for customer service, reliability, and speed satisfaction, showing that it’s a really solid provider if you want fiber internet.

    Frontier also delivers fiber internet, but its satisfaction ratings are far lower than AT&T. It ranks in the bottom half in nearly every category except for price, where it ranks seventh, placing it just ahead of Spectrum. Frontier doesn’t increase prices for at least four years, making it a better choice over other providers with shorter promotional periods.

    Best TV and internet bundles

    Internet speedTV channelsPriceOrder online
    DIRECTV ENTERTAINMENT + AT&T Fiber Internet 300Up to 300 Mbps75+$119.99/mo.*
    DIRECTV CHOICE™ + AT&T Fiber Internet 1,000Up to 1,000 Mbps105+$164.99/mo.*
    Frontier 500 + YouTube TVUp to 500 Mbps100+$112.98/mo.#View Plans
    Frontier 1 Gig + YouTube TVUp to 1,000 Mbps100+$132.98/mo.#View Plans

    AT&T bundles with DIRECTV, however you have to order the two separately, just like you would with any other service, and there are no perks or discounts like what usually come with bundle packages.

    Frontier bundles YouTube TV with its fiber and DSL services. Customers save $10 a month by bundling and get 100+ channels of live TV.

    Internet types: AT&T vs. Frontier

    Internet typeOrder online
    Fixed wireless
    Frontier DSL
    View Plans

    Both companies primarily offer DSL, which uses telephone cables to bring the internet into your home. A 140 Mbps or slower speed is typical for a DSL connection, although Windstream’s DSL service can reach up to just over 200 Mbps.

    Fiber-to-the-home services from AT&T and Frontier have a somewhat smaller footprint, generally covering around 30% of their national markets. AT&T is the only provider of the two with a fixed wireless service, however, which sends internet via transmitters to homes that can’t get a landline connection.

    Should you get fixed wireless?

    Fixed wireless isn’t just for rural areas. Perhaps you live in an area where fiber and DSL internet just isn’t reliable. Take a look at our fixed wireless internet guide for more about speed, plans, and pricing.

    Data caps: AT&T vs. Frontier

    Data CapOrder online
  • No cap for fiber
  • 150 GB for DSL6
  • 1 TB for 75 Mbps or slower
  • 350 GB for fixed wireless plan
  • Frontier
  • No cap
  • View Plans

    Frontier doesn’t enforce data caps on its DSL and fiber services, and AT&T refrains from imposing a data cap on its fiber connection. But AT&T limits data on its DSL and fixed wireless services to keep the services affordable. The company also admits that it can’t always measure your data use on a DSL connection, so it’s possible that you can go over the 1 TB limit, and it doesn’t show up in the data tracker. If that happens, you won’t be charged.2

    Contracts: AT&T vs. Frontier

    Contract lengthOrder online
  • No contract
  • Frontier
  • Optional 1-year contract with Visa Reward Card
  • View Plans

    AT&T doesn’t require a contract in most cases. Instead, you pay a discounted price each month for 12 months, and then the plans increase around $10 (DSL) and $20 (fiber)—the fixed wireless service doesn’t appear to have promotional pricing.

    However, AT&T may require a contract if you order internet service with additional promotional discounts. The early termination fee applies if you cancel service after 14 days.3 The fee is prorated and reduced each month.4

    Frontier also doesn’t enforce contracts for internet service. However, you must sign a one-year agreement if you accept a Visa Reward Card when you sign up for the Fiber 500 or Fiber 1 Gig plan. A two-year contract only comes into play when you get satellite TV.

    Installation: AT&T vs. Frontier

    Installation optionsOrder online
  • Up to $99.00 for pro installation
  • Free for self-installation
  • Frontier
  • $85.00 for DSL expert installation
  • $50 expert installation for fiber plans*
  • View Plans

    Modern AT&T fiber installations include a termination box outside and a fiber jack installed in the room where AT&T’s desktop optical network terminal (ONT) resides—this device is actually a gateway supporting fiber. Older fiber installations have a smaller ONT mounted on the fiber jack and use Ethernet to connect a standard gateway or router.

    With Frontier’s fiber-to-the-home service, a technician installs the ONT in your garage, basement, or closet. After that, the ONT connects to your home’s existing Ethernet or coaxial cable wiring—a MoCA adapter and splitter are required for coaxial cabling and TV. The supplied gateway connects to the Ethernet or coaxial cable jack mounted in the wall.

    Like self-installing cable and DSL equipment, your home already needs a fiber connection before you can order a self-install kit from AT&T. Frontier currently does not have a self-install option.

    Availability: AT&T vs. Frontier

    AT&T has a larger footprint stamped across the US than Frontier. Most of its coverage spans through the south and southeast and stretches up into Wisconsin and Michigan. There are scattered spots throughout Kansas and Oklahoma and very little elsewhere until California.

    According to the Federal Communications Commission, AT&T’s DSL internet covers 96% of its nationwide market while fiber is available in 31% of its service areas—fixed wireless is available in just 4%.9

    Frontier’s primary target is in rural areas. Its DSL service is available in 25 states, mainly in the Northeast, Southeast, and Southwest. Its Frontier Fiber Internet is limited to portions of California, Florida, Indiana, and Texas. Frontier expects to expand its fiber-to-the-premises service in California by 350,000 locations over the next six years.10

    To see which AT&T and Frontier plans are available in your area, enter your zip code below:

    Final call: AT&T vs. Frontier

    AT&T is our top pick of the two for fiber internet. The incredibly fast speeds are great, and there’s a wider variety of plans that should fit the needs of most homes. But, like Frontier’s fiber service, it’s hard to find unless you live around densely populated areas like Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Orlando, and San Francisco.5

    AT&T is also our top pick for DSL internet. But if you don’t have access to either DSL or fiber, AT&T has your back with its fixed wireless service.


    Our editorial team bases our analyses on customer input from our annual customer satisfaction survey, results from our speed test tool, and proprietary internet 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.

    More about AT&T and Frontier


    1. Frontier Communications, “Answering Your Questions,” Accessed January 4, 2022.
    2. AT&T, “Get Home Internet Data Usage Info,” Accessed January 4, 2022.
    3. AT&T, “Contract Requirements for U-verse, AT&T Internet, AT&T Phone Service,” December 6, 2018. Accessed January 3, 2022.
    4. AT&T, “AT&T Internet Cancellation Policy,” Accessed January 4, 2022.
    5. AT&T, “Want to Know If You Can Get AT&T Fiber at Your Address?” Accessed January 4, 2022.
    6. AT&T, “Get Home Internet Data Usage Info,” Accessed January 4, 2022.
    7. AT&T, “AT&T and Frontier Communications Strike Network Deal,” October 6, 2021. Accessed January 4, 2022.
    8. Frontier, “Frontier Investor Day Presentation,” August 5, 2021. Accessed January 4, 2022.
    9. Federal Communications Commission, “Fixed Broadband Deployment,” December 31, 2020. Accessed January 4, 2022.
    10. Frontier Communications, “Before the Public Utilities Commission of the State of California,” December 24, 2020. Accessed May 4, 2021.

    Author -

    Kevin Parrish has more than a decade of experience working as a writer, editor, and product tester. He began writing about computer hardware and soon branched out to other devices and services such as networking equipment, phones and tablets, game consoles, and other internet-connected devices. His work has appeared in Tom’s Hardware, Tom's Guide, Maximum PC, Digital Trends, Android Authority, How-To Geek, Lifewire, and others. At, he focuses on network equipment testing and review.

    Editor - Rebecca Lee Armstrong

    Rebecca Lee Armstrong has more than six years of experience writing about tech and the internet, with a specialty in hands-on testing. She started writing tech product and service reviews while finishing her BFA in creative writing at the University of Evansville and has found her niche writing about home networking, routers, and internet access at Her work has also been featured on Top Ten Reviews, MacSources, Windows Central, Android Central, Best Company, TechnoFAQ, and iMore.

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