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Optimum vs. T-Mobile: Which Internet Provider Is Best for You?

Optimum has the edge with speed, but T-Mobile’s straightforward plan and policies receive higher customer ratings.

  • Best for speed
    • Price: $40.00–$280.00/mo.*
    • Speed: 300–8,000Mbps
    • Internet type: Cable & Fiber
    • Data cap: Unlimited
    • Contracts: Up to 2 years
  • Best for flexibility
    • Price: $50.00–$70.00/mo.
    • Speed: Up to 245Mbps
    • Internet type: 5G fixed wireless
    • Data cap: Unlimited
    • Contracts: None

Compare Optimum and T-Mobile head to head

T-Mobile and Optimum offer very different services. Optimum has faster plans and more to choose from, while T-Mobile’s 5G Home Internet is more focused on crafting a frictionless experience. T-Mobile’s superb customer ratings in our annual customer satisfaction survey prove that speed isn’t everything, but which provider is best for you depends on specific internet needs.

Pros and cons: Optimum vs. T-Mobile


  • Faster speeds
  • More plan variety


  • Price hikes


  • No price hikes
  • No contracts


  • Only one internet plan

Want to know if Optimum or T-Mobile are in your area?

Enter your zip code below to see if these two providers are available where you live.

Plans and pricing: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

When comparing similarly priced plans from each ISP, it’s obvious you get more speed with Optimum. Even its entry-level cable internet plan provides faster speeds than T-Mobile (at a cheaper monthly rate). The difference is even more dramatic with Optimum’s fiber plans.

But keep in mind that Optimum’s rates typically go up after 12 months, and you have to pay a monthly equipment rental charge unless you use your own internet equipment—something you don’t have to worry about with T-Mobile’s free rental gateway.

Optimum plans and pricing

300 Mbps Internet $40.00/mo.*
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 300MbpsView Plan
500 Mbps Internet $60.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 500MbpsView Plan
1 Gig Internet $80.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 940MbpsView Plan
300 Mbps Fiber Internet $40.00/mo.*
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 300MbpsView Plan
500 Mbps Fiber Internet $60.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 500MbpsView Plan
1 Gig Fiber Internet $80.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 940MbpsView Plan
2 Gig Fiber Internet $120.00/mo.§
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 2,000MbspView Plan
5 Gig Fiber Internet $180.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 5,000MbpsView Plan
8 Gig Fiber Internet $280.00/mo.
w/Unlimited Mobile plan
Up to 8,000MbpsView Plan

Optimum’s plan roster covers all the broadband bases. We like the 500 Mbps Fiber Internet plan best, as you get blazing-fast symmetrical speeds for a relatively low introductory rate. Its 500Mbps symmetrical speeds may be overkill for some homes, but at $60 per month, you’re not sacrificing much for the extra speed.

If you can’t get the fiber plans, both the 300 Mbps Internet and 500 Mbps Internet cable internet plans offer good speeds at low rates. For even faster speeds, Optimum has several gigabit plans. One big caveat with Optimum is its price hikes. Optimum usually raises prices after the first year; the amounts of the price hikes vary by plan and region.

T-Mobile plans and pricing

PackagePriceSpeedView on provider site
T-Mobile 5G Home Internet Unlimited $50.00/mo.*72–245Mbps
T-Mobile 5G Home Internet Plus $70.00/mo.*72–245Mbps

T-Mobile has only one internet plan, but it’s one of our favorites. If you just compare the speed and introductory prices, Optimum wins, hands down. But that’s not always the best way to shop for an internet plan. With internet speed, you need only enough to cover your activities and maybe have a little headroom for unusually bandwidth-heavy days. T-Mobile’s 245Mbps speed is just right for most customers. And while low introductory rates feel like a win in the beginning, eventually the price hike comes and you’re stuck with a bill you never would have agreed to at face value.

T-Mobile offers the conveniences of 5G and stress-free plan policies. Its rate includes everything, even a rental internet gateway. The setup is super simple—no cables, appointments, or technicians required. Also, moving the gateway to a better spot is as simple as connecting it to power. Any other type of internet service requires rerouting the cabling in your home.

Deals and promotions: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

Get up to a $300 Best Buy or Home Depot card, or a gift of choice powered by Snappy, when you sign up for qualifying internet plans and bundles.*


Get the Deal

Get $150 back when you switch to T-Mobile Home Internet. **



Extra fees: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

Equipment FeeInstallation FeeOther Fees
Optimum $12.00/mo.$100 (free if ordered online)$10 late fee
T-Mobile Home Internet Free$35 activation feeVaries by state

In the long run, Optimum’s $12 per month equipment rental fee is the most significant extra cost on your internet bill, as it’s a monthly charge. You can get out of it by purchasing your own modem and router (or gateway), which has its own set of pros and cons.

Customer ratings: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

OverallPriceSpeedReliability Customer service
Optimum 3.3/52.9/53.6/53.4/53.3/5
T-Mobile Home Internet 4.1/54.1/54.0/53.9/54.1/5

T-Mobile customers gave higher ratings in every category. In fact, customer sentiment is where these two providers differ the most. T-Mobile was the top-performing ISP in this year’s customer satisfaction survey, earning the highest ratings for overall satisfaction, price, and customer service. Optimum was, unfortunately, one of the worst-performing ISPs.

Best TV and internet bundles

Internet speedTV channelsPriceView on provider site
300 Mbps Internet + Basic TV
Up to 300Mbps*50+$70.00/mo.View Plan
300 Mbps Fiber Internet + Core TV
Up to 300Mbps*220+$115.00/mo.View Plan
1 Gig Fiber Internet + Premier TV
Up to 940Mbps*420+$195.00/mo.View Plan

Optimum’s internet and TV bundles pack a lot of speed and channels for the money compared to other ISPs. Deals start as low as $70 for a fast 300Mbps connection and 50+ channels. T-Mobile doesn’t offer TV service.

Internet types: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

Internet typeView on provider site
Optimum Fiber, cableView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet 5G fixed wireless

Optimum and T-Mobile use different technologies to deliver internet service. Optimum employs a mix of coaxial and fiber-optic cables, while T-Mobile’s tech utilizes cell towers for a completely wireless delivery method.

The hardline connections used by Optimum are more powerful. They’re faster, more consistent, and perhaps a bit more reliable. T-Mobile 5G fixed wireless has a big advantage when it comes to convenience: You can install the service yourself without running any cables throughout your home, and moving the router is as simple as picking a new spot and plugging it in.

Data caps: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderData CapView on provider site
Optimum UnlimitedView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet Unlimited

All Optimum and T-Mobile internet plans come with unlimited data. This is a huge plus, as daily life continues to require more and more gigabytes of internet traffic. Providers usually charge extra for unlimited data, if they offer it all.

Contracts: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderContract lengthView on provider site
Optimum Up to 2 yearsView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet Month to month

T-Mobile’s month-to-month contracts are preferable to Optimum’s long contracts, which can be as long as two years. Optimum may also introduce price hikes after the promo period ends, whereas T-Mobile guarantees your monthly rate won’t change.

Installation: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderInstallation optionsView on provider site
Optimum $100 (free if ordered online)View Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet Self-install ($35 activation fee)

Technically, Optimum charges $100 for an installation, but you can easily avoid the charge by ordering your service online. T-Mobile’s setup is so easy that it doesn’t even offer any type of professional installation, but you do have to pay a one-time activation fee.

Availability: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

T-Mobile’s coverage spans the entire continental U.S., not surprising given the service runs over T-Mobile’s enormous cell network. Optimum’s hardwired cable and fiber connections are present in 21 states, including a few particularly dense pockets in the east (most notably in the Tri-state area) and coverage sprinkled throughout the South that spills over into Texas and Oklahoma.

Is Optimum or T-Mobile 5G Home Internet available where you live?

If you’re ready for a switch, enter your zip code below to see if these two internet providers are available to you.

Final call: Optimum vs. T-Mobile

If you’re after the fastest speeds, Optimum is the way to go. Every one of its internet plans offers faster speeds than T-Mobile. But the trade-off is higher monthly rates and the usual ISP annoyances, like rental fees, term contracts, and price hikes.

On the other hand, if you have average internet needs and want simple, no-hassle internet, T-Mobile’s breezy customer experience has received excellent customer feedback.


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 Optimum and T-Mobile


Author -

Austin worked as a broadband technician installing and troubleshooting countless home internet networks for some of the largest ISPs in the U.S. He became a freelance writer in 2020 specializing in software guides. After graduating with a BS in technical communication from Arizona State University, he joined the team at where he focuses on home network improvement and troubleshooting.

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