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

Spectrum is faster and cheaper, but customers still prefer T-Mobile.

  • Best for speed
    • Price: $24.99–$89.99/mo.*
    • Speed: 50–1,000Mbps
    • Internet type: Cable & limited fiber
    • Data cap: None
    • Contracts: None
  • Best for convenience
    • Price: $60.00/mo.
    • Speed: Up to 245Mbps
    • Internet type: 5G fixed wireless
    • Data cap: None
    • Contracts: None

Compare Spectrum and T-Mobile head to head

Spectrum offers faster speeds and cheaper rates than T-Mobile, but it comes with some typical provider annoyances like price hikes and extra fees. What sets T-Mobile apart is its convenience and budget-friendly policies, as evidenced by T-Mobile’s excellent customer feedback in our latest customer satisfaction survey. And while T-Mobile isn’t as fast as Spectrum, its speeds are perfectly adequate for most households. Let’s take a closer look.

Pros and cons: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile


  • Fast speeds
  • Plan variety
  • Wide availability


  • Price hikes
  • WiFi service fee


  • Flexible service
  • Price lock guarantee
  • Easy setup


  • Only one plan

Find Spectrum and T-Mobile internet

Want to know if Spectrum or T-Mobile are in your area? Take a look by typing in your zip code below.

Plans and pricing: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

Spectrum’s introductory rates provide more speed and more plan variety.  You can find everything from budget-friendly connections all the way up to blazing gig speeds. If you’re looking for either the cheapest rate or the fastest speeds, Spectrum is the better choice.

Where T-Mobile’s single internet plan shines brightest is as a set-it-and-forget-it, zero-hassle internet service. The convenience of 5G’s wireless delivery combined with T-Mobile’s straightforward policies makes for a frictionless customer experience. If you’re looking for the straightest path to simple but great internet service, then T-Mobile is the way to go.

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Spectrum plans and pricing

Spectrum Internet® Assist$24.99/mo.*Up to 50Mbps
wireless speeds may vary
View Plan
Spectrum Internet® 100$29.99/mo.*Up to 100Mbps
wireless speeds may vary
View Plan
Spectrum Internet®$49.99/mo.
for 12 mos.
Up to 300Mbps
wireless speeds may vary
View Plan
Spectrum Internet® Ultra$39.99–$69.99/mo.
for 12 mos.
Up to 500Mbps
wireless speeds may vary
View Plan
Spectrum Internet® Gig$59.99–$89.99/mo.
for 12 mos.
Up to 1,000Mbps
wireless speeds may vary
View Plan

Spectrum’s 300Mbps plan is the best option for households with average internet needs. While it’s increasingly common to see gig speeds these days, you probably don’t need more than 200–300Mbps.

Spectrum’s Internet 100 plan should suffice for two-person households or for those with light to moderate internet needs. Its 100Mbps speed is enough bandwidth for two simultaneous 4K streams while keeping a healthy amount of headroom for other tasks. But like Spectrum’s Assist plan, your houseold must qualify for the 100Mbps plan.

The Spectrum Internet Ultra and Spectrum Internet Gig plans are overkill for most customers. Unless you have unusually demanding internet needs, you’d be better off spending the extra money on other home networking improvements.

One downside of Spectrum internet service is the price hikes. The above rates are introductory promotional rates and are usually reserved for new customers. After the initial 12 months, your prices are likely to increase—how much more they increase depends on the plan and region.

T-Mobile plans and pricing

T-Mobile 5G Home Internet$60.00/mo.*72–245MbpsView Plan

T-Mobile’s 5G Home Internet utilizes wireless 5G signal from cell towers, meaning there are no networking cables involved …  ever. You’ll never need a technician or have to make an appointment, even if you need to relocate the router to another room down the line.  To sweeten the deal, T-Mobile throws in a free internet gateway, a price-lock guarantee, and requires no term contract.

As for the speeds, while Spectrum offers faster plans, most customers wouldn’t even notice the difference. T-Mobile’s 245Mbps speeds are perfect for your average household to still have some headroom left over for peak hours and internet-heavy days.

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Deals and promotions: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile


Spectrum One Includes Internet + FREE WiFi and Mobile

Save over $400 with Spectrum One – sign up for Spectrum Internet® with speeds from up to 300Mbps and get Advanced WiFi and one Unlimited Mobile line FREE for 12 mos.*


Get the Deal

T-Mobile Home Internet

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


Get the Deal

Interested in an internet plan?

Find out which Spectrum or T-Mobile plans you can get in your area by checking your zip code below.

Extra fees: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

Equipment FeeInstallation FeeOther Fees
Spectrum $7.00/mo. (WiFi Service fee)$59.99 (pro install)

$24.99 (self-install)
$8.95 Late fee
T-Mobile Home Internet Free$35.00 activation feeVaries by state

T-Mobile has a slight edge when it comes to eliminating extra fees. It provides a free rental internet gateway for every customer, plain and simple. Spectrum doesn’t technically charge an equipment rental fee, but it does charge a WiFi Service fee, whether you use its gateway or standalone router.

Comparing install fees between these two ISPs is a mixed bag. Spectrum’s professional installation costs more if you need it, but the self-install is cheaper than T-Mobile’s activation fee. Installing Spectrum’s cable internet yourself is easy enough, but it’s not guaranteed to work, as it requires your home to already have an active connection to the Spectrum network.

Customer ratings: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

Overall RatingPriceSpeed Reliability Customer service
Spectrum 3.7/53.3/53.9/53.7/53.7/5
T-Mobile Home Internet 4.1/54.1/54.0/53.9/54.1/5

T-Mobile’s 5G Home Internet received the highest ratings overall in our annual customer satisfaction survey. T-Mobile customers were particularly happy with their prices and customer experience. Comparing customer feedback between these two ISPs, T-Mobile comes out on top in every category.

Best TV and internet bundles

PriceInternet speedTV channelsView on provider site
Spectrum Internet + TV Select Signature$114.98/mo.*Up to 300Mbps150+View Plan
Spectrum Internet Ultra + TV Select Signature$134.98/mo.*Up to 500Mbps150+View Plan
Spectrum Internet Gig + TV Select Signature$156.98/mo.*Up to 1,000Mbps150+View Plan

One advantage of going with Spectrum is the option to combine your internet and TV services. In general, TV and internet bundle discounts aren’t as generous as they once were, but you still get the convenience of managing two plans with a single provider. We like the Internet + TV Select Signature plan best. You get a decent internet speed and lots of channels without breaking the bank.

Internet types: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

Internet typeView on provider site
Spectrum Cable and limited fiberView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet 5G fixed wirelessView Plans

Spectrum mostly offers cable internet, which is one of the fastest and most reliable types of internet connections available. And because it utilizes the same coaxial cables once used for cable TV, much of the country already has access to cable internet.

T-Mobile offers fixed wireless internet, which runs on the same technology that delivers data signals to your cell phone. This is how T-Mobile is able to offer internet service without installing any cables in customer’s homes.

Data caps: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderData CapView on provider site
Spectrum NoneView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet NoneView Plans

Both T-Mobile and Spectrum provide unlimited data with all their internet plans. This means that regardless of which of these top-notch ISPs you choose, you won’t be stuck counting gigabytes.

Contracts: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderContract lengthView on provider site
Spectrum NoneView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet NoneView Plans

Neither Spectrum nor T-Mobile require customers to commit to lengthy term contracts, as all plans from both providers are month to month. The biggest difference between the two is that Spectrum introduces price hikes after 12 months (typically raising your monthly bill by $20 or more), while T-Mobile goes in the opposite direction with a lifetime price lock guarantee. This is a big plus for T-Mobile and surely one of the reasons why T-Mobile customers gave such high price satisfaction ratings in our customer survey.

Installation: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

ProviderInstallation optionsView on provider site
Spectrum $59.99 pro installView Plans
T-Mobile Home Internet $35 activation feeView Plans

Installing T-Mobile 5G Home Internet is absurdly easy. First, the app directs you to the ideal location in your home to place the T-Mobile internet gateway. Then, you simply connect the gateway to power and finish the short set through the app. There are no networking cables, technicians, or inconvenient appointments. The whole process takes about 15 minutes.

Spectrum’s installation is a more standard affair. The professional installation requires an appointment with a broadband technician. There’s a cheaper and more convenient self-install option, but there’s no guarantee it’ll work, as it requires your home to already have an active connection to the Spectrum network. Even with a self-install, you may have to pay a $4.99 reconnect fee and a $30.00 activation fee.

Availability: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile

T-Mobile utilizes its enormous cellular network to distribute its 5G Home Internet, so it’s available in most heavily populated areas in the United States. Spectrum also has a considerable presence in the lower 48 states, but its coverage area is more focused around dense urban pockets, like New York and Los Angeles. Use our zip search below to see if either service is available in your area.

Ready to switch to Spectrum or T-Mobile internet?

Enter your zip code below to see if Spectrum or T-Mobile is in your area.

Final call: Spectrum vs. T-Mobile 5G Home Internet

If you need the fastest speeds, Spectrum is a safer bet. Its rates tend to be a bit cheaper than T-Mobile too, just keep in mind that Spectrum usually imposes a price hike after 12 months. T-Mobile is for those who want good internet service without having to think too hard about it. T-Mobile has fewer extra fees, no price hikes, and an easier setup—some customers may prefer that extra peace of mind over a faster internet speed or a cheaper intro rate.


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.

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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