CenturyLink vs XFINITY: Side by Side Comparison

Enter your zip code below to see if CenturyLink or XFINITY offers service in your area.

CenturyLink vs XFINITY

CenturyLink and Xfinity offer similar pricing and speeds for broadband Internet, but that’s where the similarities end. Deciding whether CenturyLink or Xfinity is right for your needs comes down to two things: how much TV you watch, and how much speed you’re willing to sacrifice for savings.

CenturyLink AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (855) 893-1284
  • Support: (866) 963-6665

(855) 893-1284

$29.95 to $79.95 / mo.

10 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 5.0 mbps

63%63%

DSL

Current: 45th (0)

XFINITY from Comcast AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (844) 246-9494
  • Support: (800) 934-6489

(844) 246-9494

$39.99 to $87.95 / mo.

10 mbps to 400 mbps

Up to 25 mbps

59%59%

Cable

Current: 1st (0)

CenturyLink OVERVIEW

CenturyLink is a communications company that provides DSL and fiber Internet, phone, and TV service. Their TV offerings are marketed under the name “PRISMTV.”

XFINITY OVERVIEW

Xfinity by Comcast provides broadband internet, cable TV, and phone service via their hybrid fiber coaxial network. Xfinity is one of the most widely available cable Internet providers in the US.

CenturyLink INTERNET DEALS †

  • $29.95 for 40 mbps Fiber
    • 40 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 1 year
    • Requires AutoPay enrollment and paperless billing.
    • Setup: $59.99 (Includes standard technician installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $9.99/mo or one-time $99.99
    • Call (855) 893-1284 to setup service.
  • $44.95 for 100 mbps Fiber
    • 100 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 1 year
    • Requires AutoPay enrollment and paperless billing.
    • Setup: $59.99 (Includes standard technician installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $9.99/mo or one-time $99.99
    • Call (855) 893-1284 to setup service.
  • $45 for 10 mbps DSL
    • 10 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • Setup: $0 (Free standard tech installation and internet activation.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (855) 893-1284 to setup service.
  • $45 for 25 mbps DSL
    • 25 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • Setup: $0 (Free standard tech installation and internet activation.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (855) 893-1284 to setup service.
  • $79.95 for 1,000 mbps Fiber
    • 1,000 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 1 year
    • Requires AutoPay enrollment and paperless billing.
    • Setup: $59.99 (Includes standard technician installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $9.99/mo or one-time $99.99
    • Call (855) 893-1284 to setup service.
Last updated on 6/19/2017

†All plans not available in all areas or to all customers. Verify details with CenturyLink.

XFINITY INTERNET DEALS †

  • $39.99 for 25 mbps Cable
    • 25 mbps ↓ and 5.0 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $74.95.
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
  • $84.95 for 100 mbps Cable
    • 100 mbps ↓ and 5.0 mbps
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
  • $87.95 for 50 mbps Cable
    • 50 mbps ↓ and 5.0 mbps
    • some areas have a 1TB data cap
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (844) 246-9494 to setup service.
Last updated on 6/25/2017

†All plans not available in all areas or to all customers. Verify details with XFINITY.

CenturyLink: NO DATACAP FOUND

We have not found plans that include data caps. This doesn't mean CenturyLink doesn't have data caps, just that we haven't found them when collecting their plans. Always verify plan details before purchasing.

XFINITY: DATACAPS From 1024 GB/mo.

We have found plans that include datacaps. XFINITY offer plans with data caps regionally or nationwide. Be sure to verify plan details before purchasing.

CenturyLink's TECHNOLOGY

Centurylink offers internet, TV, and phone service to consumers using two primary technologies: DSL and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH).

DSL is an older internet technology that uses Centurylink’s existing telephone infrastructure to deliver internet service. While DSL networks don’t offer the fastest speeds or lowest latencies, they are widely available and generally less expensive than other alternatives since they travel over the same cheap, readily available cables that carry telephone data.[2]

If you are considering DSL, make sure to check the speeds available in your area as they can vary dramatically depending on your local infrastructure and distance between your house and the provider’s local office.

Fiber-to-the-home (FTTH), on the other hand, is widely considered the next generation of consumer internet access. In an FTTH implementation, Centurylink delivers a fiber optic connection directly to your residence, resulting in higher bandwidth and lower latency. The only problem with FTTH is that installing fiber optic cables are expensive, so this type of service is not widely available and usually comes with a higher monthly cost than DSL, cable, or fixed wireless.

XFINITY's TECHNOLOGY

Xfinity by Comcast offers Internet, TV, and phone service to consumers primarily via their hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) network. They are also rolling out fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) installations in some regions.

Hybrid Fiber Coaxial (HFC) networks are used globally by cable providers to deliver broadband internet access to consumers. In short, HFC networks deliver a fiber optic connection to a node within a neighborhood, which then branches off to service 25-2000 homes.[3] By using this network structure, Comcast and other cable providers are able to take advantage of their existing coaxial infrastructure to offer competitive broadband speeds at a lower up-front installation cost to the company.

In the case of FTTH installation, fiber optic cable is run directly to consumers residences or businesses. This network structure is preferred over hybrid networks. Unfortunately, they aren’t widely available due to the high costs associated with running fiber optic cable.

CenturyLink RATINGS AND REVIEWS

36%36% Customer Rating

36.1% recommendation rating according to 39,771 verified users.

XFINITY RATINGS AND REVIEWS

40%40% Customer Rating

40.0% recommendation rating according to 96,630 verified XFINITY users.

CenturyLink COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

CenturyLink Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

XFINITY COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

XFINITY from Comcast Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Television and streaming are key concerns for broadband consumers

CenturyLink and Xfinity both offer TV service in addition to broadband Internet, creating a compelling value proposition for shoppers who consume a lot of television content.

While cable TV from Xfinity comes via the same coaxial connection delivering Internet, CenturyLink’s DirectTV generally requires a satellite dish (this is scheduled to change in coming years, however, as the company phases out dishes in favor of streaming DirectTV content).[1]

In spite of the difference in how each provider makes TV content available, both offer TV bundled with other services like Internet and phone service for a discount.

Internet speeds vary based on location and technology

DSL, cable, and fiber can each be the “best” option

Generally speaking, DSL is considered slow; cable slightly faster; and fiber the fastest of the bunch. In practice, DSL and cable usually offer similar performance, and can even compete with fiber in some circumstances.

So far as CenturyLink and Xfinity, the company offering the fastest connections varies dramatically by area — especially since CenturyLink began offering true fiber offerings. The slower provider in an area will usually offer corresponding cheaper plans. If you can live with the slower speed, these plans can be a great deal.

Last updated on 6/24/2017.

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