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CenturyLink vs TDS Internet

Compare CenturyLink and TDS internet service in 2024

3 Plans Available
CenturyLink internet
price range
$50 - $75/month
*Prices may vary depending on the plan.


  • 100 Mbps - 940 Mbps
  • DSL, Fiber, Copper, Fixed Wireless
  • $15 a month equipment fees
  • Unlimited Data
7 Plans Available
TDS internet
price range
$29.95 - $74.95/month
*Prices may vary depending on the plan.


  • 25 Mbps - 1 Gbps
  • DSL, Fiber, Cable, Copper
  • $12 a month equipment fees
  • Unlimited Data

Learn more about CenturyLink and TDS:

Learn more about CenturyLink and TDS

Both CenturyLink and TDS Telecom provide internet to significant swathes of the U.S. CenturyLink offers DSL and fiber home internet services, while TDS focuses on DSL, cable, and fiber internet connections. CenturyLink and TDS are particularly well-suited for rural communities, since their DSL networks allow them to deliver internet service through existing telephone lines. While TDS provides TV and phone services as part of its bundling packages, CenturyLink only offers phone service as an add-on.

CenturyLink vs TDS: Best Deals

Internet Deals

CenturyLink Features Fewer Fees Than TDS

Both Providers Offer Self-Install Options

CenturyLink customers can choose between professional installation and self-installation. Professional installation usually comes with a $99 setup fee, but some higher tier plans will waive it. There are no additional fees for the activation. On the other hand, customers who opt to self-install don’t have to pay any fees as long as they have all the necessary equipment. Self-installation usually applies to homes with an existing fiber or DSL wiring.

TDS Telecom also offers professional installation and self-installation. Self-installing TDS Telecom DSL or fiber internet is straightforward, particularly for homes that were connected to a TDS Telecom service before. First-time customers are encouraged to go through professional installation. There’s a nominal fee involved depending on the type of internet being installed, but qualifying customers are often allowed to waive the fees.

CenturyLink Doesn’t Require Annual Contracts

While CenturyLink used to require contracts, today, CenturyLink offers contract-free DSL and fiber internet plans. That said, CenturyLink does charge $15 per month to use its modem, though you can also purchase your modem for $200 outright.

On the other hand, TDS Telecom plans, whether DSL or fiber, require a 24-month contract. This contract binds customers to use the company’s service for said duration. Customers essentially have to buy themselves out by paying the remaining monthly fees if they want to duck out of the contract.

CenturyLink Outshines TDS in Data Caps

CenturyLink offers unlimited data on all its plans, regardless of connection type. In comparison, TDS offers unlimited data only on its fiber and cable internet plans. If you have a TDS DSL plan, you’ll have to keep your data usage under 250 GB.

CenturyLink vs. TDS Internet Review

We asked BroadbandNow users to review CenturyLink based on four core attributes: Customer Service, Reliability, Speed, and Value.

BroadbandNow readers submitted 4389 for CenturyLink. CenturyLink earned an average score of 3.13 out of 5.

As of April 2024, BroadBandNow’s editorial team has not been able to survey enough TDS customers to provide a comprehensive understanding of how this service is meeting customers’ needs or expectations.

Frequently Asked Questions About CenturyLink and TDS Telecom

  • Is CenturyLink or TDS cheaper?

    TDS is the most affordable option, with plans starting at $29.95 per month, while CenturyLink’s plans start at $50 per month.

  • Who has faster speeds? CenturyLink or TDS Telecom?

    While both providers offer great speeds, TDS Telecom offers the fastest connections, with download speeds up to 1 Gbps on a fiber network. CenturyLink’s top speeds up to 940 Mbps, also on a fiber network connection, follow closely behind.

  • Do CenturyLink and TDS Telecom have unlimited data?

    CenturyLink offers unlimited data on all its plans, while TDS only offers unlimited data on cable and fiber internet plans.