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) 272-5033
  • Support: (877) 862-9343

(855) 272-5033

$45 to $75 / mo.

3.0 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 1,000 mbps

63%63%

DSL

Current: 42nd (0)

XFINITY from Comcast AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (844) 336-0715
  • Support: (800) 934-6489

(844) 336-0715

$39.99 to $92.95 / mo.

15 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 35 mbps

59%59%

Cable

Current: 4th ↓ (-2)

CenturyLink OVERVIEW

CenturyLink is a telecommunications company that markets DSL, as well as fiber Internet, digital phone, and TV service.

Xfinity OVERVIEW

XFINITY from Comcast is the largest home Internet company in the US, offering whole-home WiFi, phone, television, and home security.

CenturyLink INTERNET DEALS †

  • $45 for 10 mbps DSL
    • 10 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Setup: $0 (Free self-installation and internet activation. Standard tech install is $60.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (855) 272-5033 to setup service.
  • $45 for 3.0 mbps DSL
    • 3.0 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Setup: $0 (Free self-installation and internet activation. Standard tech install is $60.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (855) 272-5033 to setup service.
  • $45 for 40 mbps Fiber
    • 40 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation. Internet activation is free.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $150
    • Call (855) 272-5033 to setup service.
  • $55 for 100 mbps Fiber
    • 100 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation. Internet activation is free.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $150
    • Call (855) 272-5033 to setup service.
  • $75 for 1,000 mbps Fiber
    • 1,000 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • Prepay required.
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation. Internet activation is free.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo or one-time $150
    • Call (855) 272-5033 to setup service.
Last updated on 11/9/2018

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

Xfinity INTERNET DEALS †

  • $39.99 for 60 mbps Cable
    • 60 Mbps ↓ and 5.0 Mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $74.95.
    • Some areas have a 1TB data cap.
    • Call (844) 336-0715 to setup service.
  • $49.95 for 15 mbps Cable
    • 15 Mbps ↓ and 2.0 Mbps
    • Some areas have a 1TB data cap.
    • Call (844) 336-0715 to setup service.
  • $79.99 for 400 mbps Cable
    • 400 Mbps ↓ and 10 Mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $99.95.
    • Some areas have a 1TB data cap.
    • Call (844) 336-0715 to setup service.
  • $89.99 for 1,000 mbps Cable
    • 1,000 Mbps ↓ and 35 Mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $104.95.
    • Some areas have a 1TB data cap.
    • Call (844) 336-0715 to setup service.
  • $92.95 for 105 mbps Cable
    • 105 Mbps ↓ and -- Mbps
    • Some areas have a 1TB data cap.
    • Call (844) 336-0715 to setup service.
Last updated on 11/14/2018

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

CenturyLink: DATACAPS From 1024 GB/mo.

We have found plans that include datacaps. CenturyLink offer plans with data caps regionally or nationwide. Be sure to 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 services broadband Internet, TV, and telephone service to consumers over two primary technologies: DSL and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH).

DSL "piggybacks" on Centurylink’s already-installed phone infrastructure to provide broadband Internet service. DSL networks are widely available and generally less expensive than alternatives since they can use the same wires carrying data[2].

When considering DSL plans, double-check speed tiers available locally, as they can change.

Fiber, on the contrary, is considered the best internet access. In a Fiber-to-the-Home implementation, the provider provides a fiber optic cable the full distance to your home, leading to better performance. The only issue with Fiber-to-the-Home is that fiber is expensive, such that this type of service is not expanding quickly and usually comes with a higher monthly cost than DSL, cable, or fixed wireless.

Xfinity's TECHNOLOGY

Comcast delivers Internet and television signal over the same copper cable networks.

Cable providers use copper TV wires. Coaxial Cable lines can manage more bandwidth than DSL.

Download speed will usually outperform uploads on cable.

Thanks to DOCSIS standard, Comcast is upgrading to gigabit downloads in some parts of their coverage area.

CenturyLink INSTALLATION

CenturyLink subscribers have two options for installing service: self-installation or professional installation.

Installing the service yourself isn't complicated, and CenturyLink provides an install kit. Everything needed to perform the installation, including directions, comes with the self-install box. The task generally be done within a half hour.

Professional installation is necessary for homes that have not been connected to CenturyLink Internet before, or in cases where the subscriber doesn’t have time to configure the settings. Appointments can be made when you order service on the phone.

CenturyLink customers with pre-wired homes who are comfortable following instructions can easily save by doing the equipment on their own.

Xfinity INSTALLATION

Self-installation is the easiest option for the majority of customers. It's particularly simple for Internet-only service.

New signups get a kit mailed to them with step-by-step instructions for activating the router.

Professional installation is also a common choice. However, it often comes with a small charge. For new subscribers selecting a TV package, scheduling a professional install is best, as the installation is usually more involved.

CenturyLink RATINGS AND REVIEWS

35%35% Customer Rating

35.2% recommendation rating according to 59426 verified users.

Xfinity RATINGS AND REVIEWS

41%41% Customer Rating

40.9% recommendation rating according to 158881 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.

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