CenturyLink vs Suddenlink: Side by Side Comparison

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

CenturyLink vs Suddenlink

The speeds and prices of broadband plans available from CenturyLink and Suddenlink vary from area to area, with some households open to “gigabit” service and full fiber connectivity. Picking the right provider for your needs will be a question of deciding whether you want to pay a premium for the highest speed or take a discount for a more average plan.

CenturyLink AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (888) 450-4052
  • Support: (866) 963-6665

(888) 450-4052

$45 to $85 / mo.

10 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 2.0 mbps

63%63%

DSL

Current: 42nd ↑ (+3)

Suddenlink Communications AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (877) 694-9474
  • Support: (877) 694-9474

(877) 694-9474

$49.99 to $99.99 / mo.

50 mbps to 1,000 mbps

8.0 mbps to 50 mbps

61%61%

Cable

Current: 23rd ↓ (-2)

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.”

Suddenlink OVERVIEW

Suddenlink is a cable broadband provider offering Internet and TV in addition to phone subscriptions. The company uses an advanced hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) network to deliver download speeds up to 1,000Mbps (1Gb) in some areas, comparable to fiber.

CenturyLink INTERNET DEALS †

  • $45 for 10 mbps DSL
    • 10 mbps ↓ and -- mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • $50 Reward Card!
    • Setup: $0 (Free self-install. Standard tech installation is $60.)
    • Modem: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (888) 450-4052 to setup service.
  • $55 for 40 mbps Fiber
    • 40 mbps ↓ and -- mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Order qualifies for a $50 Reward Card and a 3-month subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited Family Plan!
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (888) 450-4052 to setup service.
  • $65 for 100 mbps Fiber
    • 100 mbps ↓ and -- mbps ↑ w/ a 1024 GB/mo data cap
    • Prepay required.
    • Order qualifies for a $50 Reward Card and a 3-month subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited Family Plan!
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (888) 450-4052 to setup service.
  • $85 for 1,000 mbps Fiber
    • 1,000 mbps ↓ and -- mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • Prepay required.
    • Order qualifies for a $50 Reward Card and a 3-month subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited Family Plan!
    • Setup: $60.00 (Includes standard tech installation and free internet activation.)
    • Modem: $10/mo or one-time $100
    • Call (888) 450-4052 to setup service.
Last updated on 12/10/2017

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

Suddenlink INTERNET DEALS †

  • $49.99 for 100 mbps Cable
    • 100 mbps ↓ and 10 mbps ↑ w/ a 250 GB/mo data cap
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Free installation with online order.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (877) 694-9474 to setup service.
  • $69.99 for 400 mbps Cable
    • 400 mbps ↓ and 40 mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Free installation with online order.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (877) 694-9474 to setup service.
  • $99.99 for 1,000 mbps Cable
    • 1,000 mbps ↓ and 50 mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Free installation with online order.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $10/mo
    • Call (877) 694-9474 to setup service.
Last updated on 9/28/2017

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

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.

Suddenlink: DATACAPS From 250 GB/mo.

We have found plans that include datacaps. Suddenlink 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.

Suddenlink's TECHNOLOGY

Broadband Internet offerings from Suddenlink come via their hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) network, alongside TV and phone plans. While less future-proof than a true “fiber” network, Suddenlink’s HFC network is optimized to deliver speeds that rival fiber, up to 1,000Mbps.

Hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) networks work by bringing optical fiber cables as far as individual neighborhoods or subscriber areas, only switching over to existing coaxial copper TV infrastructure for the “last mile” between the node and subscriber residences.[3]

The upcoming DOCSIS 3.1 protocol for delivering broadband Internet data via coaxial cable promises to make high-speed Internet available to even more consumers in the near future without expensive upgrades to existing coaxial networks in use.

CenturyLink INSTALLATION

CenturyLink customers have two options for installation: self-installation or professional installation.

Self-installation is generally very simple, particularly for DSL broadband. Everything needed to perform the installation, including step-by-step instructions, should come with the modem or welcome kit. The whole process generally takes no more than 40 minutes.

Professional installation is necessary if your house has never been connected to CenturyLink before, or if the customer simply doesn’t care to fiddle with the cables and settings. An appointment with a professional technician can be made directly through CenturyLink.

There is usually a fee associated with bringing in a professional, so customers with pre-wired homes who are comfortable plugging in a few cables and following simple instructions can easily save money by doing it themselves.

Suddenlink INSTALLATION

Suddenlink provides detailed self-install guides for customers who wish to set up their own connection. This entails connecting a modem to the house’s cable jack, configuring it with or without a router, testing the lines, and a few other small tasks.

While self-installation is doable in less than an hour for most residential customers, professional installation is also available. Professional installation by a Suddenlink technician may be required if the residence has not received Suddenlink service before.

Professional installation is sometimes offered free for new customers, but cost should be confirmed before setting up an appointment.

CenturyLink RATINGS AND REVIEWS

35%35% Customer Rating

35.4% recommendation rating according to 50,305 verified users.

Suddenlink RATINGS AND REVIEWS

49%49% Customer Rating

49.5% recommendation rating according to 7,966 verified Suddenlink users.

CenturyLink COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

CenturyLink Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Suddenlink COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

Suddenlink Communications Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Early termination fees and other surprises

Check the fine print before jumping aboard

Broadband communication companies provide complex services, and those complex services come with equally complex fees. The big ones to be aware of are ETFs (early termination fees) and limited-time pricing. ETFs matter particularly for consumers who anticipate relocating regularly, including renters, students, and etc.

The best-priced plans often include ETFs and multi-year agreements so the provider knows they can make a profit even if the margin on your particular connection is not hugely profitable for them. Additionally, shoppers should be sure to compare and account for the “final price” of plans, not just the limited-time sign-up offer. Sign-up offers can save you money, but ultimately the final price matters more if you’ll be staying with the same provider for years.

Pay up-front to avoid rental fees

Modem rentals aren’t something you have to have

Modem rentals are a common offering for Internet providers, providing them with a stable source of low-cost revenue while streamlining the installation and upkeep process for customers. It’s a win-win for people who don’t want to mess with the home network or move too much for owning hardware to be practical, but it’s a losing proposition for everyone else.[1]

First, check with your provider about which makes and models of modem/router are compatible with their network. Second, pick a model that can handle the bandwidth you’re paying for. The savings on rental costs should pay for it within the year, and after that it’s a simple way to save $100 or so per year.

Last updated on 12/10/2017.

Disclaimer: All trademarks remain the property of their respective owners, and are used by BROADBANDNOW only to describe products and services offered by each respective trademark holder. The use of any third party trademarks on this site in no way indicates any relationship, connection, association, sponsorship, or affiliation between BROADBANDNOW and the holders of said trademarks. BROADBANDNOW is a comparison and research website that does not offer internet, TV, or home phone service.

Made with love by Nick Reese and Duane Anderson in Austin, Texas.

© 2014 – 2017 BROADBANDNOW

BroadbandNow is a registered trademark of Microbrand Media LLC