Internet Providers in San Francisco, CA

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Residential Internet Statistics for San Francisco, CA
Internet Providers: 21
Internet Plans: 29
Fastest Speed Available: 10,000 Mbps
Average Plan Price: $53.43

Internet Buyer's Guide for San Francisco, California

Published by Annie Kim

Reviewed by Tyler Cooper and Julia Tanberk

Last Updated: August 04, 2021

If you’re looking for an internet provider in San Francisco, California, then you’re in luck as this Internet Buyer’s Guide encompasses information regarding internet plans, prices, deals, speeds, and extra fees. Currently, there are 21 residential providers and 42 business providers for San Franciscans to choose from. No matter if you’re a local looking to switch services, a prospective resident, or a business owner, you’ll find answers to your internet shopping questions from the details outlined below.

Residential Internet Providers in San Francisco, CA

Provider Starting Price Speed Range Type Of Internet Coverage Availability
AT&T Internet $55/mo. 100-940 Mbps IPBB, Fiber 99% IPBB, 37% Fiber
XFINITY from Comcast $29.99/mo. 50-1200 Mbps Cable 99% Cable
EarthLink $49.95/mo. 7-1000 Mbps DSL, Fiber 99% DSL, 36% Fiber
Raw Bandwidth Communications $29.95/mo. 3-100 Mbps DSL 75% DSL

The table above summarizes San Francisco internet providers with the greatest coverage locally.

Fastest Internet Providers in San Francisco, CA

Provider Maximum Speed Price Range
Sonic 2000 Mbps $39.99-59.99/mo.
XFINITY from Comcast 1200 Mbps $29.99-84.99/mo.
EarthLink Fiber 1000 Mbps $49.95-99.95/mo.
Wave Broadband 1000 Mbps $19.95-50/mo.

The providers above offer the fastest download speeds currently available to San Francisco residents.

What type of internet is available in San Francisco?

Internet types available in San Francisco are DSL, cable, fiber-optic, copper, fixed wireless, and satellite.

  • DSL: One of the top choices for internet in San Francisco, DSL is the cheapest option with widespread coverage. Data is transmitted through twisted copper telephone lines for connectivity.
  • Cable: Another popular option among San Franciscans, cable internet uses coaxial cables from TV networks to deliver data at faster speeds than DSL.
  • Fiber-Optic: San Francisco is a “Fiber-Friendly” certified city, and because of its large fiber infrastructure in which glass strands deliver data at lightning speeds, internet speeds are much higher than other major cities in California.
  • Copper: Copper internet refers to telephone carrier lines to transfer digital data. Businesses commonly use this type of internet.
  • Fixed Wireless: An alternative choice and also widely available, fixed wireless internet provides a connection through data transfer between two fixed locations such as a radio and some other wireless link.
  • Satellite: Though not always the most affordable option, satellite internet has a 100 percent coverage in San Francisco. To form a reliable internet connection, a technician will usually install a dish on your roof or balcony.

Not all internet types are available in various pockets of San Francisco—always check with the internet provider about availability in your area.

How do I find the cheapest internet option in San Francisco?

Among the 63 internet providers in San Francisco, Wave Broadband, Raw Bandwidth Communications and XFINITY from Comcast provide some of the cheapest internet plans in San Francisco at different speeds and prices.

Cheapest internet in San Francisco

  • Wave Broadband—$19.95/mo. for up to 50 Mbps *
  • XFINITY from Comcast—$29.99/mo. for up to 50 Mbps *
  • Raw Bandwidth Communications—$39.95/mo. for up to 12 Mbps *
  • HughesNet—$39.99/mo. for up to 25 Mbps *
  • Sonic—$39.99/mo. for up to 1000 Mbps *
* Price is per month before fees for length of contract. Price may be a promotion and is not guaranteed. Review final price and terms before choosing an internet provider.

How Much Internet Speed Do I Need In San Francisco?

Known as the second-most densely populated city in the U.S., San Francisco is also the center for all things cultural, commercial, and financial. Due to the competitive nature of San Francisco’s job market and therefore household income, it’s important for residents to find an affordable internet plan that boasts high download and upload speeds in a tech-driven neighborhood. Internet speed requirements vary depending on the type of internet activities and the size of your household or business.

For small households with light internet users, a minimum download speed of 25 Mbps allows for comfortable web browsing and streaming videos on one device. Larger households with moderate internet users would need at least 100 Mbps. If you’re looking for gigabit performance and 4K resolution when streaming on multiple devices, download speeds of at least 1000 Mbps are ideal.

Below are the recommended download speeds based on frequent internet activities and the residential providers in San Francisco that offer these speeds.

Recommended Speeds Type of Internet Activities Internet Providers in San Francisco
25+ Mbps
  • Basic web browsing
  • Stream video on one device
  • Low lag online gaming
  • Ideal for 1-2 person household of light internet users
  • EarthLink
  • Viasat Internet
  • HughesNet
  • Raw Bandwidth Communications
  • Sonic
  • Etheric Networks
100+ Mbps
  • Competitive gaming
  • Heavy streaming
  • High-resolution video chat
  • No lag online gaming
  • Appropriate for smart homes
  • Ideal for 4+ household
  • AT&T Internet
  • XFINITY from Comcast
  • T-Mobile Home Internet
  • EarthLink Fiber
  • Viasat Internet
  • Sonic
  • Wave Broadband
  • Wave G
1000+ Mbps
  • Stream 4K video on multiple devices (i.e. Load Netflix show in HD in 5 seconds or download a 30 GB game in less than 5 minutes)
  • Gigabit performance
  • Ideal for home offices
  • Ideal for 4+ household of power internet users
  • AT&T Fiber
  • XFINITY from Comcast
  • EarthLink Fiber
  • Sonic
  • Wave Broadband
  • Wave G

How do I find the fastest internet in San Francisco?

There are a handful of providers that offer some of the fastest internet in San Francisco—such as XFINITY from Comcast, EarthLink Fiber, and Sonic—with speeds that can go up to 1200 Mbps.

Should I bundle TV or phone service in San Francisco?

A number of San Francisco providers offer bundles that include TV and/or phone services with the internet. AT&T Internet and AT&T Fiber provide various bundles and triple play options at different price points, benefits, and speeds. When browsing for bundles, you may find that benefits include waived installation fees, lower prices for new customers, and unlimited data. Before you decide, check with the internet provider to see how their bundles may benefit you.

Bundled Cable Plans and Pricing in San Francisco

Internet Providers in San Francisco Services Price Range of Bundles
AT&T Internet Internet + TV $119.99-139.99/mo.
AT&T Fiber Internet + TV $134.99/mo.

How can I compare the major internet providers in San Francisco?

Several factors come into play when you ponder over which internet provider works best for you. Below are some major points to consider:

  • Price: Living in San Francisco means a higher household income. When shopping for an internet provider, decide how much you’re willing to pay per month for the service. Quality of life is crucial when living in a densely populated, global city where different markets are always competing with each other, hence, higher expenses.
  • Speed: As the tech hub of the Bay Area, San Francisco residents and business owners aim for the highest speeds. Depending on your household size and how frequently each person uses the internet, note how much internet speed is needed for comfortable use.
  • Data Caps: Many of San Francisco’s internet providers offer generous data caps or no data caps at all. Keep track of how much data your household uses before deciding on a plan with a data cap or unlimited data.
  • Contracts: A vast majority of internet providers in San Francisco do not require contracts for their plans, such as AT&T Internet and XFINITY from Comcast. However, the handful that do generally have a contract term of 1-2 years.

What do I need to keep in mind when moving to San Francisco?

Whether you’re attending San Francisco State University as an incoming freshman or starting a new job at one of the five major banking institutions, several broadband considerations should come to mind before you move. Transferring or switching your internet provider is one of them.

Before switching your internet provider, check with your current one to see if your plan is transferable. If so, and you’re happy with their services, you won’t have to worry about searching for a different provider. Should you decide to switch providers or your plan isn’t transferable, beware of early termination fees.

You will encounter early termination fees when you decide to opt out of a contract with your current provider. It’s a good rule of thumb to always read the fine print of your contract to ensure that you’ll avoid early termination fees, which in San Francisco, can cost anywhere between $0-400. Research prospective internet providers to see which ones have early termination fees.

Contract lengths for internet providers in San Francisco range from 1-2 years. If you’re looking for contract-free options, AT&T Internet and XFINITY from Comcast are some providers that offer contract-free plans. Coverage may be limited with the aforementioned providers. Additionally, you’ll want to determine whether you’ll be a short or long-term resident if you’re thinking about signing a contract. This will prevent any sudden fees that will hinder your transition to your new home or business in San Francisco.

Installation Fees in San Francisco

There are two options for internet installation: self-installation or professional installation. For some providers, professional installation is required in addition to equipment and handling fees. In San Francisco, professional installation fees range from $0 to $99. Select bundles will waive installation fees—check with the internet provider if the bundle that you’re planning to purchase waives these fees.

How much data do you need for your home or business internet in San Francisco?

Depending on your household size and how often everyone uses the internet, data cap requirements will vary. For business owners, you may want to opt for unlimited data to accommodate employees’ and customers’ everyday internet use. In San Francisco, internet providers who offer plans with no data caps are Viasat Internet and EarthLink.

What are the most-connected neighborhoods in San Francisco?

In San Francisco’s ethnically diverse and populated neighborhoods, an average of 5-6 internet providers are available to each household. The most connected neighborhoods are The Sunset, Financial District, and Mission District.

Internet Statistics for San Francisco, California

As a technologically-driven city and home to major corporations such as Apple, Google, Facebook, and Twitter, San Francisco is a primary location for career growth. It is the 5th most connected city in California, ahead of ahead of South San Francisco, Brisbane, Sausalito, Daly City, and Emeryville.. The average download speed in San Francisco is around 138.2 Mbps. Despite Etheric Networks, AT&T Internet and XFINITY from Comcast offering some of the greatest coverage in the city, approximately 4,000 people either have minimal broadband connections or still do not have access to any wired internet. However, given San Francisco’s ever-growing economy, internet providers are readily available in many neighborhoods, keeping everyone connected in some shape or form.

Internet Statistics 2021

Recognition

fiber-certification-badge

San Francisco, CA

4,000 People Only have access to 1 or fewer wired internet providers available at their address.

This data is calculated from FCC datasets which providers are legally required to supply twice a year. We further validate this data for accuracy.

San Francisco is the 5th most connected city in California ahead of South San Francisco, Brisbane, Sausalito, Daly City, and Emeryville.

The “Connected” metric is a citywide average based on FCC data showing the density of broadband options at the census block level.

Fiber Availability: 57% of people living in San Francisco have residential fiber service available to them.

Fiber coverage data is sourced from FCC Form 477 filings and cross-validated through BroadbandNow with private datasets and direct provider reporting.

Approximately 99% of San Francisco residents are serviced by multiple wired providers.

This coverage statistic is based on a mix of FCC and private provider reporting in the past two quarters.

As of this month, 94133 is the zip code with the fastest average download speed in San Francisco.

Zip-based speed averages are calculated from M-Labs consumer speed tests run by IP addresses in the area.

In San Francisco County, approximately 1,000 people do not have access to 25 Mbps wired broadband.

25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload is the minimum speed for an Internet connection to be classified as “Broadband” by the FCC.

Internet Provider Competition Map For San Francisco

San Francisco Internet Competition Map. Click for interactive map.
Click here to initialize interactive map

Frequently Asked Questions About Internet in San Francisco, California

  • What is the cheapest internet service in San Francisco?

    The cheapest internet plan in San Francisco is offered by Wave Broadband with download speeds up to 50 Mbps at $19.95/month and 300 GB. For speeds up to 100 Mbps, the lowest-priced plan is from Wave Broadband at $30/month.

    Summary of Low-Priced Plans in San Francisco, California

  • What is the fastest internet in San Francisco?

    Some of the fastest internet in San Francisco is provided by XFINITY from Comcast, EarthLink Fiber, and Sonic.

    XFINITY from Comcast’s fastest plan has download speeds up to 1200 Mbps at $84.99/month. With download speeds up to 1000 Mbps, EarthLink Fiber offers some of the fastest internet speeds at $99.95/month.

    Summary of some of the Fastest Internet Providers in San Francisco, California

  • Can I bundle TV and phone service with internet in San Francisco?

    In San Francisco, AT&T Internet and AT&T Fiber offer bundle and triple play deals at various prices ranging from $119.99/month-$139.99/month.

  • How many internet providers are in San Francisco?

    In total, there are 63 internet providers in San Francisco.

  • How many residential internet providers service are in San Francisco?

    Currently, there are 21 residential internet providers in San Francisco.

    Popular Residential Internet Providers in San Francisco (Listed by Coverage)

  • How many business providers are in San Francisco?

    There are 42 business providers in San Francisco.

    Popular Business Internet Providers in San Francisco (Listed by Coverage)


    Popular Enterprise Internet Providers in San Francisco (Listed by Coverage)

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