Suddenlink vs. CenturyLink

CenturyLink logo

Type of service

Cable

Type of service

DSL, Fiber

Download speeds

50 Mbps–1 Gbps

Download speeds

12–100 Mbps (DSL),
1 Gbps (Fiber)

Price

$44.99–$99.99 per month

Price

$50.00–$65.00 per month

Equipment fees

$10.00 per month

Equipment fees

$9.99 per month

Installation fee

None

Installation fee

Varies

Data caps

On select plans

Data caps

None

Customer Satisfaction

3.6/5

Customer Satisfaction

3.5/5

Type of service

Cable

CenturyLink logo

Type of service

DSL, Fiber

Download speeds

50 Mbps–1 Gbps

CenturyLink logo

Download speeds

12–100 Mbps (DSL),
1 Gbps (Fiber)

Price

$44.99–$99.99 per month

CenturyLink logo

Price

$50.00–$65.00 per month

Equipment fees

$10.00 per month

CenturyLink logo

Equipment fees

$9.99 per month

Installation fee

None

CenturyLink logo

Installation fee

Varies

Data caps

On select plans

CenturyLink logo

Data caps

None

Customer Satisfaction

3.6/5

CenturyLink logo

Customer Satisfaction

3.5/5

CenturyLink logo

*Pricing and speeds are current as of 8/14/17. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers are available in all areas.

Should I Choose Suddenlink or CenturyLink as my High-Speed Internet Service Provider?

Verdict

Choose Suddenlink for transparent billing practices. If you worry about surprise fees or price hikes, choose Suddenlink as your internet service provider (ISP). Surveyed customers ranked Suddenlink fourth for its monthly bills, so you can count on it to calm your bill anxieties and keep your budget in check.

Choose CenturyLink Simply Unlimited Internet for smooth installation and setup. If the thought of installing internet equipment makes you quiver with dread, select CenturyLink High-Speed Internet as your provider. While you won’t get the highest speeds with this DSL-based service, it likely won’t be an issue if you mostly stick to checking Facebook and perusing Amazon.

Choose CenturyLink Fiber for reliable connectivity. If you stream a lot of movies or games, you require a steady—and fast—internet connection. Such a connection becomes a reality with fiber internet. It reduces latency (the time it takes for data to transfer and be received) and download time, both important factors for the hardcore Destiny player.

Find and compare Suddenlink and CenturyLink plans and pricing in your area:

Coverage area

Suddenlink

Suddenlink is most commonly found where you can find Southern hospitality and outdoor living. Its top states include those in Appalachian country, as well as Arkansas and Oklahoma. Suddenlink drifts into the bayou, too: Louisiana claims the fifth-top area served by state.

CenturyLink

Minus Minnesota, you’ll generally find CenturyLink High-Speed Internet in the western half of the United States. Its main coverage areas occur in desert conditions, with Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico taking some of the top five spots. CenturyLink High-Speed Internet also climbs the Rockies to deliver service to Colorado residents.

CenturyLink Fiber Internet

Because CenturyLink 1-Gig is a newer internet service, it hasn’t yet been offered on a statewide level. Instead, the coverage areas rest in specific cities. More cities, and eventually states, should receive service as CenturyLink grows its fiber-based network.

Top 5 states:

  1. West Virginia
  2. Arkansas
  3. Texas
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Louisiana

Top 5 states:

  1. Utah
  2. Arizona
  3. Colorado
  4. New Mexico
  5. Minnesota

CenturyLink 1-Gig Availability Map

Top 5 states:

  1. Columbia/Jefferson City, Missouri
  2. Denver, Colorado
  3. La Crosse, Wisconsin
  4. Las Vegas, Nevada
  5. Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota

Customer satisfaction ratings

Every year, HighSpeedInternet.com asks customers to review their internet service providers. Their feedback covers several areas, including speed, reliability, billing, and customer support. HighSpeedInternet.com then tallies respondents’ scores on a five-star scale, with five being the best and one the worst. To view the full survey, visit our annual Internet Provider Customer Satisfaction Survey.

Suddenlink

Overall customer rating

(3.6/5)

CenturyLink

Overall customer rating

(3.5/5)

 

Internet speed

Suddenlink

(3.8/5)

Because Suddenlink provides cable internet service, it gets a solid score in the speed category. Nearly half of Suddenlink customers we surveyed say that the provider’s speeds always meet their household’s needs.

CenturyLink

(3.4/5)

Most of CenturyLink’s customers have relatively slow DSL service, so perhaps it’s little surprise that CenturyLink scores lowest for speed. However, bear in mind that CenturyLink also has fiber service in some locations—and CenturyLink’s fiber customers gave the provider much higher ratings.

 

Reliability

Suddenlink

(3.6/5)

Suddenlink’s reliability score falls below average. in our survey, over half of Suddenlink’s customers said they experience outages sometimes or way too often (22%)

CenturyLink

(3.4/5)

CenturyLink also scores low for reliability, likely due to the challenges inherent in having a DSL internet plan. But fiber customers give it a much higher rating—a very respectable 3.7.

 

Price

Suddenlink

(3.4/5)

Internet is often expensive, but thankfully Suddenlink scores towards the top on price. However, it’s likely you’ll experience unexpected price hikes or hidden fees—59% in our survey say they’ve experienced one or the other on Suddenlink.

CenturyLink

(3.2/5)

Although CenturyLink ranked fairly low on price, one advantage is you won’t need to worry as much about sudden price hikes. More than half of the CenturyLInk customers we surveyed said they haven’t experienced price hikes or hidden fees.

 

Customer service

Suddenlink

(3.6/5)

This category covers what customers experience after signing on the dotted line. Suddenlink scores lower-middle rankings here, but our survey respondents seem generally pleased—only 14% of Suddenlink customers said they were dissatisfied with customer service.

CenturyLink

(3.5/5)

When it comes to customer service, CenturyLink again scores pretty low, tying with Xfinity for worst provider in our survey.

Advantages & disadvantages

Advantages

  • Easy-to-use online support materials
  • Customizable bundling options

Disadvantages

  • No publicly disclosed pricing
  • Limited coverage areas

Advantages

  • Easy installation and setup
  • No data caps

Disadvantages

  • No-term agreements on select plans only
  • Monthly bills that are sometimes confusing

Advantages

  • Reliability
  • Highest speeds on the market today

Disadvantages

  • Limited availability
  • Limited customer support

Bundling options

Many internet service providers sell other communications offerings, including telephone and cable television. Some even offer home automation systems or business-class services. Customers can buy the items à la carte, but most prefer to bundle them to cut down on expenses or monthly bills.

Suddenlink TV and internet bundles

Suddenlink offers a robust television service, including TiVo, pay-per-view (PPV), on-demand video, and basic cable service. Its cable television service delights, too, serving up to 200 channels, including some free high-definition (HD) ones. In addition, customers can add specialty channels to gain access to sports, movies, and family programming.

Many customers bundle Suddenlink’s television and internet services to either save money or receive some sort of perk. However, to figure out your exact bundling options, you must go through the Suddenlink storefront. You input your address, select the desired services, and choose the plan that best meets your needs and budget.

CenturyLink bundles

CenturyLink offers internet and home phone bundles for $85 per month. If you’re bundling internet and home phone anyway, you should get the highest bandwidth available since it’s all the same price.

 

Equipment

Suddenlink provides customers with a DOCSIS 3.0 modem-router, a required piece of equipment for higher internet speeds. The ISP typically either mails an ARRIS, Hitron, or SMC model to customers who elect to self-install or hand-delivers it during an onsite installation.

Learn how to self-install your Suddenlink equipment

Our cable modem recommendation for Suddenlink:

Because CenturyLink offers two types of internet, it employs a number of modem-routers to ensure reliable connectivity. CenturyLink 1-Gig, for example, requires a DOCSIS 3.1 modem-router to reach gigabit speeds. DSL relies on the earlier standard, DOCSIS 3.0, to enable strong connections and speed throughout the home. Some of CenturyLink’s common models include Actiontec, Westell, and ZyXEL.

Learn how to self-install your CenturyLink equipment

Our modem/router recommendation for CenturyLink:

What you should consider when comparing Suddenlink and CenturyLink

Slower to faster speed graphic

Types of Connections

When comparing Suddenlink and CenturyLink, some primary considerations apply. Customer service stands as one element, as do reliability and ease of installation. But before contemplating those items, you should examine two others: coverage area, which receives attention in the next section, and what type of internet Suddenlink and CenturyLink offer.

The two ISPs actually provide a few different types of internet service. Suddenlink provides you with cable internet, which runs on the same lines as your cable television. Cable service tends to produce reliable high speeds—at least compared to satellite, dial-up, and DSL.

CenturyLink lives on opposite spectrums, providing both DSL and fiber internet service plans. DSL uses existing telephone lines to deliver internet service. Because the lines are older, they can be prone to slower speeds and interference, especially when compared to fiber.

Fiber offers the fastest and most reliable speeds. As a more modern technology, it uses new infrastructure formed from fiber-optic networks to deliver service. The networks can send and receive data much faster than cable and DSL lines, explaining why fiber usually clocks in with the highest speeds and reliability among internet service types.

About the providers

Suddenlink Communications spans multiple states, with regional offices found in Greenville, North Carolina; Charleston, West Virginia; Tyler, Texas; and Lubbock, Texas. The Internet Service Provider offers television, telephone, home automation, and cable internet service in sixteen states. Be forewarned that availability of the four services varies by state.

Find out more about Suddenlink

CenturyLink calls Monroe, Louisiana, home. The Internet Service Provider offers business and residential internet throughout the United States and around the world. Besides internet, CenturyLink provides telephone service. The internet comes in two flavors: DSL or fiber.

Find out more about CenturyLink

With the information listed here, you should be able to confidently select your next Internet Service Provider. If you’re feeling unsure of which provider to choose, start with one easy step: use the tool below to find and compare the internet plans available in your area.

The name CenturyLink and the pathways logo are trademarks of CenturyLink.

Author -

Erin is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. She has over ten years of experience, with a background in marketing and creative writing

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