Best Cable Internet Providers of 2022

What is Cable Internet?

Data over cable is one of the first forms of broadband internet, similar to DSL internet. Cable internet enters homes over the same coaxial cables that a cable TV subscription uses. Since cable operators have a massive infrastructure in place, cable internet is one of the most accessible types of internet service. With its high bandwidth, cable internet can deliver download speeds exceeding 1 Gbps.

Top Cable Internet Providers

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Best built-in features

Best built-in features

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Best availability

Best availability

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Best affordable option

Best affordable option

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Best gaming add-on

Best gaming add-on

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Is Cable Internet right for me?

If you live in an urban or suburban area, cable internet is an ideal and readily-available solution. Its speeds are significantly faster than DSL and its cost per Mbps is much lower. Some providers are breaking the 1 Gbps benchmark and offer multi-gig internet in select areas.

A 400 Mbps cable internet connection is more than enough to handle working remotely, HD and 4K streaming, and gaming. However, since cable internet is a shared connection, your speeds may decrease depending on how many other households in your area are using the same service.

Many cable providers have data caps. If you know what your data needs and demands are to support your digital lifestyle, it might make sense to purchase an unlimited plan if one is available. Data overages can quickly become expensive.

Pros

  • Lower cost per Mbps than DSL
  • More available than fiber
  • Ideal for gaming and HD+ streaming

Cons

  • Reduced speeds during peak hours
  • Data caps may apply
  • Contracts are often required

Find the Best Provider Near You

ProviderStarting PriceMax DownloadMax UploadData CapsFind Plan
Xfinity$19.99/mo. – $299.95/mo.50 Mbps – 3000 Mbps5 Mbps – 35 MbpsYesCheck Availability
Spectrum$49.99/mo. – $89.99/mo.300 Mbps – 1000 Mbps35 MbpsNoCheck Availability
Cox$49.99/mo.1000 Mbps35 MbpsYesCheck Availability
Xtream powered by Mediacom$19.99/mo.*1000 Mbps50 MbpsYesCheck Availability
ProviderXfinity
Starting Price$19.99/mo. – $299.95/mo.
Max Download50 Mbps – 3000 Mbps
Max Upload5 Mbps – 35 Mbps
Data CapsYes
Check Availability
ProviderSpectrum
Starting Price$49.99/mo. – $89.99/mo.
Max Download300 Mbps – 1000 Mbps
Max Upload35 Mbps
Data CapsNo
Check Availability
ProviderCox
Starting Price$49.99/mo.
Max Download1000 Mbps
Max Upload35 Mbps
Data CapsYes
Check Availability
ProviderXtream powered by Mediacom
Starting Price$19.99/mo.*
Max Download1000 Mbps
Max Upload50 Mbps
Data CapsYes
Check Availability

Pricing, speeds, offers, and availability vary by service address and are subject to change at any time. Additional fees, taxes, and terms may apply. As of 9/14/2022.

Our Top Cable Picks

Xfinity

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Best built-in features

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  • Same-day installations
  • 8+ million free WiFi hotspots
  • Unlimited data available

Xfinity is one of the largest cable operators in the country, making its internet service widely available. In addition to internet, Xfinity also offers cable TV, home phone, and home security services.

Things we like:
  • Built-in features such as security, parental controls, and WiFi
  • Free Flex streaming box with purchase of internet service
  • Fast speeds up to 3 Gbps in select areas
Things to consider:
  • Additional fees, such as equipment rental and unlimited data plans
  • Most plans have data limits

Spectrum

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Best availability

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  • Contract buyouts up to $500
  • Free access to WiFi hotspots
  • Nationwide availability

Spectrum is a fast-growing cable operator that already has availability in more than 40 states. Spectrum internet is capable of speeds up to 1000 Mbps, and can be bundled with other services, such as cable TV and home phone.

Things we like:
  • Most plans include unlimited data
  • Plans without contracts are available for a slightly higher monthly price
  • Spectrum may help you out of a contract with another provider
Things to consider:
  • Your monthly bill may increase significantly after your first 12 months of service
  • High speeds are available, but 1 Gbps service is limited

Xtream powered by Mediacom

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Best affordable option

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  • Month-to-month service
  • Speeds up to 1000 Mbps
  • Internet plans under $20

Xtream by Mediacom is available in 22 states, where it offers fast internet speeds and other services at affordable rates. Where available, speeds can reach nearly 1000 Mbps. Xtream by Mediacom also offers cable TV, home phone, and home security services.

Things we like:
  • Affordable monthly rates start at $19.99
  • No contract options are available
  • 90-day satisfaction guarantee
Things to consider:
  • Xtream by Mediacom does not offer unlimited data
  • Additional installation and activation fees apply

Cox

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Best gaming add-on

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  • Low introductory prices
  • Excellent customer support
  • Blazing fast speeds

Cox provides services in 19 states across the country. Its cable internet speeds can reach up to 1 Gbps, meeting the demands of today’s internet needs. Combine internet, cable TV, home phone, and home security services into one robust bundle.

Things we like:
  • Cancel anytime within the 30-day money-back guarantee period
  • Up your game with the Elite Gaming add-on that reduces latency
  • Stay connected with over 3 million hotspots nationwide
Things to consider:
  • While not required, you can lower your monthly payment with a term agreement
  • Most Cox cable internet plans have data limits
Glasses Looking

Our Thoughts on Cable Internet

Cable is an excellent broadband internet solution capable of speeds exceeding 1 Gbps that can easily support multiple users at the same time. After DSL, it has the broadest infrastructure and availability and typically is more affordable than fiber internet. The main disadvantage to cable internet is its low upload speeds, but that usually isn’t a problem for the average user.

Cable Internet Compared to Other Connection Types

While it doesn’t have the availability of DSL internet, cable internet is the second-most accessible wireline internet service. Satellite internet is the most accessible in the country, but lacks the speed of cable internet. Cable speeds compete with fiber speeds but is far more available than fiber at this time. Given its speed capabilities and availability, cable internet is an ideal solution that can satisfy most internet lifestyles and needs.

Comparison of internet connection types

How We Evaluate

Between hidden fees and price hikes, finding the right internet plan can feel overwhelming. To help with your search, our team of internet experts evaluates ISPs on categories including performance, affordability, and customer satisfaction to provide you with the best options near you.

FAQ

Cable Internet FAQs

Cable internet is one of the most common services in urban and suburban areas. However, some providers do have cable deployments in rural areas. If you do live in a rural or remote area, you will have more luck finding DSL internet or satellite internet. Enter your zip code here to see what services are available in your area.

It far exceeds DSL internet speeds, and competes with fiber internet speeds. However, fiber has the capacity to deliver speeds up to 10 Gbps, but the technology to support those speeds doesn’t exist at a consumer level. Cable is also more accessible than fiber at this point in time, but you can expect to see fiber becoming more available in the next few years.

Cable internet is a shared connection, meaning that if people in your building or neighborhood also use the same cable provider, your speed will be affected by the number of people using it at the same time. This typically is most noticeable at night, but the number of people working remotely has a significant impact during the day.

Xfinity has excellent cable TV and internet bundles with low starting prices to get to the services you need. Spectrum and Cox also offer robust cable and internet plans with many features built into their services. Enter your zip code to find the most affordable cable and internet plan in your area.

There are many cable internet providers across the country that offer stable, reliable, and fast internet speeds. To find the best cable internet provider near you, Enter your zip code here.

Most homes, condos, and apartments already have coaxial cable installed and connected to the cable network. If yours doesn’t, the cable operator will have to install cable and a jack in the home. Cable internet requires a modem and a router to distribute the connection in the home. 

Most cable operators offer a gateway for a monthly fee, which often has WiFi built into it, making it easy to connect your devices to your cable internet service. While you can rent this equipment from your provider, you can also purchase one that meets the provider’s technical requirements. However, some of the provider’s built-in services, such as security and parental controls, may not be available through a consumer router.