Our Top Picks for the Best Internet Providers in Chicago, IL
EarthLinkCustomers in Chicago have rated EarthLink as one of the best providers in the city. It ranks well in all aspects, including reliable high speeds of up to 1000 Mbps and the availability of different service types to choose from. The company also offers excellent customer service, high-grade equipment with efficient installation, and an interactive app that makes connecting with the help desk extremely convenient. Not only are there no limits on the data you can use, but you can be confident that the company is not likely to raise pricing a few months down the line.
As in most other cities in the US, AT&T has a popular rating in Chicago, with many residents preferring to subscribe to the service. AT&T is notable for its high speeds of up to 1000 Mbps, great value for money, and attractive promotional offers. Do a bit of research, and you’ll find a selection of plans and packages with different features. You can pick out the one that suits your needs, like, for instance, a bundled deal at a fixed, long-term price of $40.00 per month. While you can rely on the company’s installation services, you could save on the setting up costs by taking care of it on your own. AT&T provides you a step-by-step installation guide with excellent tech support.
With speeds of 1000 Mbps, Xfinity is another great ISP in Chicago. The company has a widespread network in the city, offering various plans with impressive speeds at reasonable prices. You could get plans starting at $30.00 per month, though this is a promotional rate, and you can expect the cost to go up after 12 months. If you absolutely need high-speed internet and the service is available in your area, you can expect to pay $100.00 per month.
Xfinity is known for providing some of the best speed to price ratios in Chicago, but pay close attention to the fine print in the terms and conditions. You might find that the pricing is only valid for the initial 12 months and can get raised later. If you need to get entertainment bundles, consider the X1 TV and Xfinity Flex, which is a great choice.
Chicago has several other ISPs, and you can check their comparative pricing structure and features to find the best options for your needs. Spectrum provides internet with no limits on data usage, while RCN is known for low latency and high speeds of up to 1000 Mbps. Satellite internet network, Viasat, and Atlantic Broadband with no penalties for early termination are also available. HughesNet and WOW! are other options on your list.
Internet Service Providers in Chicago, IL
An internet service that delivers a download speed of 25 MBPS or more and an upload speed of 3 MBPS or more, is classified as a ‘broadband’ service by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Here is a high-level overview of the key broadband service providers in the Greater Chicago area based on key parameters households look for in a provider, like speed, or cost, etc. Wherever you are in the Greater Chicago area, this should help you get off to a quick start in your search for an internet service provider to your home. It must be said, however, that not all providers will cover all areas. Plans might also vary. Hence, you will need to check for available services at your address.
Based on speed in Chicago, IL
If download speed is your primary consideration, the AT&T, Xfinity, RCN and EarthLink should be the shortlist you should begin with. All of them have networks that deliver up to 1000 MBPS in download speed, with some, especially the fiber networks, delivering the same on upload speeds too. Xfinity has a wide variety of high-speed plans and is widely available.
Based on customer ratings in Chicago, IL
In recent customer satisfaction surveys tat have been carried out, Earthlink has emerged as the Internet Service Provider (ISP) with the best ratings, topping out in multiple rating categories. Its efforts at a customer-focused approach, in an industry notorious for poor CSAT scores, seems to be helping. It ensures its policies are transparent and there are no shocks down the line for users.
Close on the heels of Earthlink are AT&T, Xfinity and Spectrum, each of them generally standing out at the top in at least one category, such as Xfinity for internet speeds and AT&T for setup and installation.
Based on bundling in Chicago, IL
AT&T has some great bundling options that offer long-term value. AT&T’s internet becomes available for $40 per month when bundled, and fixed for life. However, you will need to make sure that the added price of the other services like TV or phone or mobile work for you.
Xfinity also offers a great TV and internet bundle, which gives you X1 TV as well as Xfinity Flex. RCN also provides great bundling options.
Based on pricing in Chicago, IL
At $30 per month, Xfinity offers great pricing for a large player. However, bear in mind that this is a promotional price that will increase after a defined period of one year. Xfinity’s gigabit plan also turns out the best if you are more inclined towards the best ‘dollars per unit of speed’ parameter. It is available at $100 per month for the first year.
Best overall in Chicago, IL
It will depend on what you are looking for from an ISP. AT&T is known for great introductory prices as well as long-term value. Xfinity has a wide range of plans with the best speed, and enjoys customer confidence. As does Earthlink which tope out CSAT surveys. Spectrum provides great value through their TV and internet bundle. No data cap and no contract options are also offered by several providers like Spectrum and Atlantic. And if you are off the grid, Viasat and HughesNet are great options.
With some providers, like AT&T, you have the option of saving some money by doing a self-installation with the help of their guides. The RCN network is known for its low latency while Earthlink offers internet through multiple service types.
Setting up internet in an apartment
Arrangements can vary by area and even by landlord preferences. In many cases, the internet bill can be a part of the monthly rental. But, it depends on the location and landlord.
The apartment management being involved in sourcing an internet service could be beneficial as they may be in apposition to negotiate better rates on account of the bulk market they can offer.
The downside to the management involvement could be that since it knows it is dealing with another intermediary, it may not be as responsive to customer issues as it might be if dealing directly with them. Besides, the landlord may insist on a particular provider, thus limiting your options. However, this is best worked out on an individual basis.