Frontier vs WOW!: Side by Side Comparison

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

Frontier vs WOW!

Frontier Communications is the big player in this duo, with all a major communications company has to offer, while WOW! is the scrappy underdog, offering tons of customization and personalized service. That said, neither network has anything scrappy about it, and both are known for higher-than-average speeds and better-than-average customer service. Picking a winner will probably come down to considering your needs against local promotional offers.

Frontier Communications AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (844) 275-7738
  • Support: (800) 921-8101

(844) 275-7738

$25 to $40 / mo.

12 mbps to 150 mbps

Up to 150 mbps

56%56%

DSL

Current: 41st ↑ (+3)

WOW! AT A GLANCE

  • Sales: (888) 607-2611
  • Support: (800) 343-2076

(888) 607-2611

$29.99 to $59.99 / mo.

10 mbps to 500 mbps

1.0 mbps to 50 mbps

--

Cable

Current: 3rd ↑ (+1)

Frontier OVERVIEW

One of the largest DSL and fiber broadband providers in the US, Frontier Communications offers Internet, TV, and phone to consumers and businesses. Their fiber offerings are sometimes marketed as “Frontier FiOS,” and utilize fiber networks the company purchased from Verizon in 2016.

WOW! OVERVIEW

WOW! is a bundled cable TV, broadband Internet, and phone provider. The name “WOW!” stands for “Wide Open West.” The company also offers fiber Internet connectivity in select areas.

Frontier INTERNET DEALS †

  • $25 for 12 mbps DSL
    • 12 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 2 years
    • Call (844) 275-7738 to setup service.
  • $30 for 50 mbps Fiber
    • 50 mbps ↓ and 50 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Installation fees waived.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $5/mo
    • Call (844) 275-7738 to setup service.
  • $30 for 100 mbps Fiber
    • 100 mbps ↓ and 100 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Installation fees waived.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $5/mo
    • Call (844) 275-7738 to setup service.
  • $35 for 25 mbps DSL
    • 25 mbps ↓ and -- mbps
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 2 years
    • Call (844) 275-7738 to setup service.
  • $40 for 150 mbps Fiber
    • 150 mbps ↓ and 150 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate.
    • Setup: $0 (Installation fees waived.)
    • Modem w/ WiFi: $5/mo
    • Call (844) 275-7738 to setup service.
Last updated on 12/8/2017

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

WOW! INTERNET DEALS †

  • $29.99 for 10 mbps Cable
    • 10 mbps ↓ and 1.0 mbps
    • Modem: $10/mo
    • Call (888) 607-2611 to setup service.
  • $39.99 for 100 mbps Cable
    • 100 mbps ↓ and 10 mbps
    • 2-year promo rate.
    • Contract Term: 2 years with up to $345 ETF
    • Modem: $10/mo
    • Call (888) 607-2611 to setup service.
  • $59.99 for 500 mbps Cable
    • 500 mbps ↓ and 50 mbps
    • 1-year promo rate. Regular rate is $69.99.
    • Contract Term: 2 years with up to $345 ETF
    • Includes 6-month Hulu offer.
    • Modem: $10/mo
    • Call (888) 607-2611 to setup service.
Last updated on 12/10/2017

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

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.

WOW!: NO DATACAP FOUND

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

Frontier's TECHNOLOGY

Frontier offers broadband internet, TV, and phone services through DSL and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) connections.

Frontier’s DSL offerings leverage the company’s existing phone infrastructure to deliver internet access anywhere with landline access. While DSL is an older technology and offers correspondingly slower bandwidth speeds, DSL is generally more cost effective than its alternatives.[2]

Frontier’s fiber or fiber-to-the-home connections, on the other hand, deliver a fiber optic connection directly to homes and businesses. This direct fiber connection is considered state-of-the-art, creating the fastest connection speeds and lowest latency when compared to other technologies like DSL and traditional cable Internet.

WOW!'s TECHNOLOGY

WOW! offers a variety of broadband connection types, including cable, DSL, fixed wireless, and fiber, often bundled with cable television and phone offerings. As of 2016, their fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) is available in select areas and scheduled to expand based on consumer demand.

Cable broadband, WOW!’s most prevalent option, is usually delivered via hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) networks. In this type of network, most of the distance between the provider and consumer is covered by high-speed fiber optic cables. Once it reaches a neighborhood, the fiber terminates at a node where data is switched from optic signal to electrical signal for transmission over existing coaxial copper television networks.[3]

While pure fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) connections are the “gold standard” of next-generation broadband technologies — delivering speeds up to 1Gbps in ideal scenarios — WOW! is working to deploy DOCSIS 3.1 to their HFC networks. This advanced protocol, an improvement on the current DOCSIS protocols used to transmit binary data over coaxial cables, will allow some HFC networks to achieve gigabit speeds rivaling FTTH offerings.

Frontier INSTALLATION

There are two options for installing hardware needed for a Frontier Internet connection: self-installation and professional installation.

Self-installation is simple, and Frontier offers self-installation kits with all the required items including modem, router, filters, and ethernet cable. Instructions are also available on the provider’s website for customers using their own router or other supplies.

Professional installation comes with a fee, but makes the process much simpler for less-technically-inclined consumers. Professional installation can also be helpful if the internal wiring in your house is very old or damaged, in which case they can diagnose or help fix the issue. Appointments with a technician should be made directly through the provider.

WOW! INSTALLATION

WOW! offers a variety of connection types, and generally bundles installation and setup with your plan. Some customers may be able to self-install with their own equipment (compatible router, modem, etc.). However, it probably won’t save them any money as with other providers. For professional installation, WOW! sends out a skilled technician to determine what is necessary to connect your home, as well as set up and configure everything needed to get online. There is usually a small connection fee, but no direct charge for technician setup.

Frontier RATINGS AND REVIEWS

35%35% Customer Rating

34.7% recommendation rating according to 14,978 verified Frontier users.

WOW! RATINGS AND REVIEWS

55%55% Customer Rating

55.2% recommendation rating according to 6,900 verified users.

Frontier COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

Frontier Communications Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

WOW! COVERAGE & AVAILABILITY

WOW! Interactive SVG Map showing broadband coverage.

Finding the reviews that actually matter

Quality of service is tricky to gauge before you sign up

Searching for WOW! or Frontier in a search engine turns up an endless stream of results, full of contradictory opinions on which provider is “best.” The question for shopper is, where are the ratings and reviews you can actually trust? In general, there are two sources experts recommend for honest, accurate customer reviews: ACSI ratings and IP-verified customer reviews. The ACSI (American Customer Satisfaction Index) ratings above are based on data gathered manually by professional survey administrators on a quarterly basis.[1]

IP-verified customer ratings you see elsewhere on BroadbandNow are pulled on a rolling basis from real visitors, using advanced IP-address verification protocols to ensure that only real, active customers of the provider in question get to throw in their two cents. Stick to these metrics when you’re shopping based on reputation, and avoid anonymous comment threads, which are generally full of paid reviews and special interests.

Triple play, double play, and single-serve broadband

Bundling multiple subscriptions can save some households money

High definition video. Data caps. Network congestion. Life is tough sometimes for “cord cutters” who ditch the cable TV subscription in favor of over-the-top providers like Netflix and Sling TV.

Luckily, providers are reacting to the cord cutting trend by offering incredible deals in some areas for bundled Internet/phone/TV plans, making the cost of a dedicated TV subscription affordable for virtually everyone. Shoppers interested in TV and phone service should search for “triple play” and “double play” plans, the terms used by most providers to describe bundled services. Subsisting on Internet alone is workable for many consumers, but for big families and power users, a dedicated connection for TV and phone makes a lot of sense in the long run.

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