EarthLink vs. CenturyLink

A Side-by-Side Comparison of EarthLink and CenturyLink Internet Service in 2023

EarthLink and CenturyLink Service in 2022:

View EarthLink and CenturyLink Service in 2022:

EarthLink and CenturyLink are two of the largest internet providers in the United States. Both providers offer widespread DSL and fiber connections with a variety of pricing and speed options. EarthLink provides service to 43 states. Trailing closely behind, CenturyLink supplies service to 39 states. EarthLink and CenturyLink both offer reliable and high-speed internet plans, but there are some notable differences between the two providers detailed below.

EarthLink vs CenturyLink Overall Comparison

EarthLink vs CenturyLink Overall Comparison

  • Speed

    100 Mbps -5 Gbps

  • Pricing

    $59.95 - $189.95/mo.

  • Service Type

    DSL, Fixed Wireless, Fiber

  • Equipment Fee

    $15 a month

  • Data Cap

    Unlimited Data

  • 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

EarthLink provides both DSL and fiber internet options. Currently, EarthLink has coverage in over 43 states with the greatest coverage being reported in New York, California, and Texas. EarthLink offers a variety of internet plans but do not supply phone and television services.

CenturyLink holds the spot for the 13th largest internet provider in the United States while being ranked as the 3rd largest DSL provider, with EarthLink currently holding the number one DSL provider spot. Different internet technologies supplied by CenturyLink include DSL, fiber, copper, and fixed wireless internet access. CenturyLink offers a variety of double play and triple play plans, but their most noteworthy option may be their Price for Life plan that allows you to keep the same price with no contract.

EarthLink vs CenturyLink: Best Deals

Internet Deals

EarthLink vs CenturyLink: Extra Fees and Contracts


EarthLink’s installation fees range from $19.95-69.95.

Their professional installation is a one-time fee of $69.95, which is required with all their HyperLink plans. EarthLink’s team of professional technicians will ensure that all equipment is up and running properly. They also offer a self-installation option for $19.95 that includes shipping of the modem equipment and a self-install kit.

CenturyLink customers are offered two installation options.

There is an option for professional installation that can cost up to $125 or free self-installation. With several modem options including a list of compatible modems that can be purchased from other sources, fees vary depending on the type of modem equipment you select.

Contracts, Equipment Fees & Fine Print

EarthLink requires a minimum contract of 12 months for all their internet plans.

There are no credit checks for EarthLink services. If the contract is terminated prematurely, there will be an early termination fee that’s dependent on the remainder of your agreement. Any plan that is cancelled within the first 30 days has no termination fee. Plans cancelled after the first 30 days will need to pay a fee of $200. Regarding equipment, there is a monthly fee of $6.95/month for modem rental.

CenturyLink offers both contract and contract-free options.

There are no early termination fees for contract-free plans. However, if you end a contracted plan early, be prepared to pay an early termination fees for the remaining months of your agreement.

Modems purchased from CenturyLink will cost a one-time fee of $125, or a leasing option for $10/month. The self-install option is available for all CenturyLink-compatible modems.

Data Caps

There are no data caps on any of EarthLink’s internet plans.

There is a 1 TB data cap on most CenturyLink internet plans with a few exceptions: Business, Fiber GB, and Prism TV plans. CenturyLink does not charge overage fees if the data limit is exceeded but has the option to reduce usage or subscribe customers to a higher plan.

EarthLink vs. CenturyLink Internet Review

As of February 2021, BroadBandNow’s editorial team has surveyed 24 EarthLink customers and asked them to rate EarthLink on 6 different criteria - Reliability, Speed, Equipment, Support, Interaction, and Value.

Overall EarthLink customers rated them a 4.1 out of 5, which is ranked 9th of the 10 internet provider customers we surveyed in our study.

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.

Frequently Asked Questions about EarthLink & CenturyLink Internet Services

  • Is EarthLink cheaper than CenturyLink?

    Currently, EarthLink’s lowest-priced internet plan with speeds up to 3.0 Mbps is $39.95, 3-month promotional rate is $14.95/month. CenturyLink’s lowest-priced internet plan offers slightly higher speeds for $45/month.

  • Who has faster speeds? EarthLink or CenturyLink?

    Both EarthLink and CenturyLink offer internet plans with speeds up to 1000 Mbps. Depending on the location, there may be differing speeds available.

  • Do EarthLink and CenturyLink have unlimited data?

    Unlimited data is offered with all EarthLink internet plans. Most CenturyLink internet plans have a data cap of 1 TB but offer unlimited data with select plans.

  • Do EarthLink and CenturyLink require a contract?

    Most internet plans with EarthLink require a minimum 12-month contract but does not require a credit check to sign up. CenturyLink has options where no contract is needed but may require a credit check or deposit for the plan.