CenturyLink vs Mediacom: Side by Side Comparison

A Side-by-Side Comparison of CenturyLink and Mediacom Cable in 2022

CenturyLink and Mediacom Service in 2022:

View CenturyLink and Mediacom Service in 2022:

CenturyLink offers internet, cable TV, and home phone to subscribers. They even toss in home security into the mix. Mediacom provides internet, cable, and home phone. However, even though Mediacom has a smaller portfolio, they make up for it by giving customers a smaller price tag. Another difference is that while Mediacom offers true cable television, CenturyLink dishes out their cable option a bit differently; they use a satellite option. While this gives you greater channel selection, it does mean a separate bill. Overall, Mediacom is better on price; however, once their intro price is over, their rates do increase dramatically. Also, if you want a fiber connection, CenturyLink will be your go-to for your internet-only plan.

CenturyLink vs Mediacom Overall Comparison

CenturyLink vs Mediacom Overall Comparison

  • Speed

    100 Mbps -940 Mbps

  • Pricing

    $30-70/mo.

  • Service Type

    DSL, Fiber, Copper, Fixed Wireless

  • Equipment Fee

    $15 a month

  • Data Cap

    Unlimited Data

  • Speed

    100 Mbps -1 Gbps

  • Pricing

    $19.99-59.99/mo.

  • Service Type

    Cable

  • Equipment Fee

    $13 a month

  • Data Cap

    1 TB

When you look at the two companies side by side, you will notice that Mediacom offers more variety on their plans. With the lower starting point, they will attract the budget-conscious shopper. The only issue is availability. Mediacom has a smaller footprint since it’s available in only 22 states. CenturyLink offers internet to 36 states, and their offering is on a fiber network in 21 of them.

Mediacom offers a decent television and cable internet combo. It’s not as good as CenturyLink, but it’s an excellent plan for those who want to have a bundle but want to save a buck. The primary concern again is their data caps. If you are an average user who doesn’t have a large family who streams in every room, then Mediacom will be your best choice. But if you are a gamer, data caps are going to give you a kill screen every time, so we recommend you go with CenturyLink.

CenturyLink vs Mediacom: Best Deals

Internet Deals

Pros and Cons By Provider

Pros and Cons By Provider

CenturyLink Pros

  • Free installation
  • Symmetrical speeds on most plans
  • Unlimited data on plans
  • No contract plans

CenturyLink Cons

  • Limited plan options
  • Limited bundling options

Mediacom Pros

  • Free installation when ordered online
  • Wide variety of speeds available
  • 12 Markets with Wi-Fi Hotspots
  • No contracts

Mediacom Cons

  • Big price jump after intro prices expire
  • Plans have data caps; each has their own

When considering an internet provider, many people’s decisions will often boil down to its features. Is fiber important? Then CenturyLink should be your choice. Is it price? Mediacom has great introductory rates, but be aware their prices will jump between $10 to $60 after the year has ended. Yet, CenturyLink’s prices are not guaranteed either; they’re just not as visible. It is important to read the fine print before you click submit.

Another feature that makes an internet provider attractive is its level of accessibility. Hotspots are popular for today’s gig workers so for these individuals in particular, it’s important that they have around-the-clock access. Mediacom lists their hotspots locations on their website so   customers can get connected away from home. Mediacom has its footprint in 12 markets across the nation. CenturyLink, however, doesn’t even have a fingerprint. CenturyLink does have Autopay and paperless billing, although theirs seems more of a requirement than a feature, meaning there is no option to turn it off. As for Mediacom, Autopay is a customer benefit and not a demand.

As we mentioned, the major con with CenturyLink is that when you choose a bundled option, it is separate from your internet. This means you have to deal with a separate bill and satellite equipment. Mediacom cons include the price increase you’ll see once the introductory price honeymoon is over.

CenturyLink and Mediacom Bundles Compared

The primary difference between CenturyLink and Mediacom is bundles. CenturyLink customers can select between DIRECTV Stream, DIRECTV, or DISH Network, offering between 190-plus to more than 330 channels for your cable viewing needs. Mediacom has a variety of cable, streaming TV, and on-demand choices. However, their cable channels are not as voluminous as CenturyLink’s satellite channel options, with Mediacom’s choices maxing out at 170+ channels. However, Mediacom has access to TiVo, premium channels, and your favorite streaming channels. Plus, your subscription allows you access to your cable channel lineup on your mobile device.

While at first it seems that Mediacom will be your cheaper option, it won’t stay that way for long, especially on the internet-only side, as well as when you bundle. The 940 Mbps plan and CenturyLink with DIRECTV Premier 330-plus channels is $199.99 per month. In contrast, Mediacom’s Triple Play 1 Gig plan with 1,700-plus channels is $129.99 per month. Yet even though the latter appears cheaper, once the promo rate ends, the plan will be $199.99. This means that while it offers equal price and equal speed, you only get half the channels. This makes CenturyLink the better option if you are seeking value for your bundled money.

CenturyLink vs. Mediacom Extra Fees and Contracts

While Mediacom has a promotional rate, this is not a contract. CenturyLink doesn’t require a contract unless you choose to subscribe to DIRECTV Stream, DIRECTV, or DISH Network. All three satellite internet companies are stand-alone and require a 24-month contract.

All three add-ons, DIRECTV Stream, DIRECTV, and DISH Network, will require subscribers to sign a 2-year contract. Expect an increase after the 24-month promo rate is over. Read the fine print beforehand so you are prepared. For example, DIRECTV’s $69.99 plan will increase to $122 per month after your first year.

Getting credit approval is another consideration many overlook when shopping for satellite service. DIRECTV uses terms like “well-qualified,” meaning those who are not “qualified” pay an upfront $120 fee for the devices they use. Although DISH requires credit qualification, they did not appear to have such an upfront fee. Still, be mindful that they may still have one.

Installations

Tech installation with CenturyLink is currently free. You can also choose to ship the installation kit to your home and self-install it. Mediacom offers free installation when you order online. Otherwise, the professional installation fee is $109.

Data Cap

CenturyLink does not have a data dap, whereas all Mediacom plans each have their own. Once you exceed their cap, you are charged $10 per 50 GB of data. If you find yourself repeatedly exceeding your limit, you may consider switching plans. Check to see if you are spending more in fees versus the cost of the upgraded plan.

Mediacom Outperforms CenturyLink in Customer Satisfaction

A CenturyLink speed test reflects an average of 294 Mbps. This is based on their fiber connection. Our Mediacom speed test is based on a fiber-rich last-mile connection and results in an average download speed of 330 Mbps.

Both companies are about average in their quality ratings for in-home Wi-Fi equipment performance according to The American Consumer Satisfaction Index. Ranking depends on seven criteria, of which include:

  • Upload/download speeds
  • Security of device
  • Device range
  • Price paid for device

Both providers are easy to reach via phone, online chat, email, and social media if you ever have an issue.

CenturyLink vs. Mediacom Internet Review

As of February 2021, BroadBandNow’s editorial team has surveyed 122 CenturyLink customers and asked them to rate CenturyLink on 6 different criteria - Reliability, Speed, Equipment, Support, Interaction, and Value.

Overall CenturyLink customers rated them a 3.6 out of 5, which is ranked 6th of the 10 internet provider customers we surveyed in our study.

As of October 2022, BroadBandNow’s editorial team has not been able to survey enough Mediacom customers to provide a comprehensive understanding of how this service is meeting customers’ needs or expectations.

Frequently Asked Questions about CenturyLink & Mediacom Cable

  • Is CenturyLink cheaper than Mediacom Cable?

    CenturyLink offers speeds up to 100 Mbps for $49/month. Mediacom Cable offers 100 Mbps for $49.99/month. In select areas, CenturyLink’s fiber plan can be found for $65/month with speeds up to 940 Mbps, and Mediacom Cable’s 1000 Mbps plan is $79.99/month. You may have access to one or the other, depending on where you live.

  • Who has faster speeds? CenturyLink or Mediacom Cable?

    Mediacom Cable’s fastest internet speeds are up to 1000 Mbps, while CenturyLink offers up to 940 Mbps. Speeds rely on location, so you may have limited access to higher speeds depending on your area.

  • Do CenturyLink and Mediacom Cable have unlimited data?

    Currently, CenturyLink offers an unlimited data plan for $65/month in select areas. If you choose a plan with a 1TB data cap, which is very high, you won’t be charged a fee if you go over the limit. Mediacom Cable doesn’t have unlimited options, but they provide generous data caps up to 6000 GB/month on specific plans.