Spectrum vs Frontier: Side by Side Comparison

Enter your zip code below to see if Spectrum or Frontier offers service in your area.

Spectrum vs Frontier

Frontier and Charter Communications are both rapidly expanding broadband providers, with all the associated growing pains and big benefits. Both providers offer some of the latest technology, driven by high-quality fiber-heavy connections. With similar speeds and prices in many areas, picking a winner depends on your specific needs and desire for add-ons like TV and phone service.

Charter Spectrum AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (855) 347-5741
  • Support: (833) 780-1880

(855) 347-5741

$44.99 to $44.99 / mo.

100 mbps to 940 mbps

10 mbps to 35 mbps

63%63%

Cable

Current: 8th ↑ (+1)

Frontier Communications AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (844) 829-1466
  • Support: (800) 921-8101

(844) 829-1466

$20 to $50 / mo.

6.0 mbps to 1,000 mbps

Up to 1,000 mbps

56%56%

DSL

Current: 41st (0)

Spectrum OVERVIEW

Charter Spectrum markets home broadband cable and fiber Internet, phone, and TV packages. Spectrum is among the largest cable companies in the US.

Frontier OVERVIEW

Frontier Communications offers Internet, as well as TV and phone to consumers and businesses. Their fiber packages are sold as “Frontier Fios,” and are built on a fiber network aquired from Verizon in 2016.

Spectrum INTERNET DEALS †

  • $44.99 for 100 mbps Cable
    • 100 Mbps ↓ and 10 Mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $65.99.
    • Modem included.
    • Call (855) 347-5741 to setup service.
Last updated on 11/12/2018

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

Frontier INTERNET DEALS †

  • $20 for 6.0 mbps DSL
    • 1.1-6 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload speeds w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • WiFi router fee is waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: $75.00 (Includes installation.)
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
  • $25 for 12 mbps DSL
    • 12 Mbps download and 1-1.5 Mbps upload speeds w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • WiFi router fee is waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: Installation is $75 and equipment delivery/handling fee is $9.99.
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
  • $30 for 18 mbps DSL
    • 18 Mbps download and 1-1.5 Mbps upload speeds w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • WiFi router fee is waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: Installation is $75 and equipment delivery/handling fee is $9.99.
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
  • $40 for 50 mbps Fiber
    • 50 Mbps ↓ and 50 Mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Wi-Fi router fee waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: $75.00 (Includes installation.)
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
  • $50 for 100 mbps Fiber
    • 100 Mbps ↓ and 100 Mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Wi-Fi router fee waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: $75.00 (Includes installation.)
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
  • $50 for 200 mbps Fiber
    • 200 Mbps ↓ and 200 Mbps ↑ w/ no data cap.
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Wi-Fi router fee waived for 12 months, $10/mo. thereafter. Get a $100 Visa Reward Card when you order online.
    • Setup: Equipment delivery/handling fee of $9.99 applies.
    • Call (844) 829-1466 to setup service.
Last updated on 11/16/2018

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

Spectrum: NO DATACAP FOUND

We have not found plans that include data caps. This doesn't mean Spectrum doesn't have data caps, just that we haven't found them when collecting their plans. Always verify plan details before purchasing.

Frontier: NO DATACAP FOUND

We have not found plans that include data caps. This doesn't mean Frontier doesn't have data caps, just that we haven't found them when collecting their plans. Always verify plan details before purchasing.

Spectrum's TECHNOLOGY

Charter Spectrum sends Internet, TV, and phone service to their subscribers over a hybrid fiber coaxial network.

Fiber-based cable uses fiber cables as it’s backbone, only resorting to slower coaxial lines for the “last mile” between customer residences.[2] Local "optical nodes" switch optic signal to analog signal.

Optical nodes may serve 50-2,000 households in an area.

Hybrid fiber-coaxial widely called “cable” internet due to the use of coaxial cable, which is also used to deliver “cable TV.”

Frontier's TECHNOLOGY

Frontier provides internet, TV, and phone services through DSL and fiber networks.

Frontier’s DSL offerings leverage existing phone infrastructure. DSL can provide broadband access on the same cable as phone service. DSL is slower than cable or fiber internet, but it's generally more affordable than competing options.

Frontier Fios or fiber-to-the-home services send a fiber line directly to residential and business customers. This direct fiber connection is considered state-of-the-art. Fiber offers the fastest speeds and lowest latency in comparison to other options like DSL or traditional cable Internet.

Spectrum INSTALLATION

Spectrum installation is not difficult. Most Spectrum Internet plans are "cable", which requires plugging a cable modem into your house’s coaxial TV outlet.

For households that have capable wiring, self-installation can be done with the devices and instructions provided by Charter. Those homes without internal wiring or with a need to upgrade will require assistance from a professional technician.

Professional Installation includes a fee, but for new customers who are unsure about their ability to understand the router, the fee may be worth it for peace of mind.

Frontier INSTALLATION

Self-installation is simple. the company gives customers a self-installation kit with all the required items including the modem, router, filters, and ethernet cable. Instructions are also available on the provider’s website.

Professional installation isn't free, but is much easier for less tech-savvy consumers. Professional installation can be helpful if the internal wiring is very old or damaged, in which case the technician will diagnose or install new wiring. Installation appointments can be made directly through the provider.

Spectrum RATINGS AND REVIEWS

50%50% Customer Rating

50.0% recommendation rating according to 59576 verified Spectrum users.

Frontier RATINGS AND REVIEWS

34%34% Customer Rating

33.9% recommendation rating according to 17881 verified Frontier users.

Spectrum COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

Charter Spectrum Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Frontier COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

Frontier Communications Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Triple play, double play, and single-serve

Picking the right bundle for your lifestyle

Promotional pricing is a common marketing tactic for Charter, Frontier, and most other broadband providers. If you plan to get TV and/or phone service in addition to Internet, keep an eye out for the terms “triple play” and “double play,” which refer to combination Internet/TV/phone and Internet/TV plans.

Thanks to streaming video services like Netflix and near-universal smartphone ownership, US consumers have been dropping cable TV subscriptions and phone service faster than ever. This is bad news for providers, but good news for customers who still want phone and TV service, since they’ll often offer double-and-triple-play deals for a fraction of the cost of independent services. In fact, they’ll sometimes even lower your overall monthly cost to stop you from dropping these services.

Buying vs renting hardware

Modem costs add up quickly

The cost of Internet isn’t usually that bad — it’s the miscellaneous fees, extras, and add-ons that push it up. One of the easiest miscellaneous fees to get rid of is the monthly modem/router rental cost, usually between five and ten dollars.[1]

Sure, it doesn’t sound like much, but buying your own modem and router instead will usually pay for itself within the year. After that, it’s just an extra hundred dollars or so a year in your pocket. Keep in mind, however, that providers usually have specific modem brands and models they’re compatible with. If you plan to switch providers or relocate regularly, renting hardware might be worth the cost.

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.

© 2014 – 2018 BROADBANDNOW

BroadbandNow is a registered trademark of Centerfield BBN LLC