When it comes to choosing the best internet service providers, the options from AT&T and Verizon will always join the conversations. After all, they are the top two companies in the United States in terms of coverage and the number of subscribers. As two of the preferred companies, they both offer competitive internet packages and professional services to its customers.
But here lies the problem: in an AT& T vs Verizon Wireless comparison, how do you choose the perfect provider to serve your streaming needs and internet requirements?
To help you out in the selection process, we have this comprehensive comparison guide of the two companies. In this review, we compare these two providers based on speed, network coverage, and overall value for money. Before you decide, make sure you check this unbiased review.
AT&T vs Verizon Wireless How Do They Compare?
These are the top two companies in the US right now in terms of offering the best plans, coverage, and subscriber base. Since they are ranked the best in the industry, it means that you can always count on their services, right? Although they offer a variety of plans backed by industry approval, it’s still best to read and check out their pros and cons and the products that they offer best. In many recent reviews, Verizon is the go-to provider if you’re looking for better coverage and speed. AT&T, on the other hand, works for the customer who loves TV and entertainment. Here’s a look at the basics of the services offered by both companies.
- AT&T. It currently provides internet services to more than 160 million customers in the US. The company offers unlimited internet plans that boast generous hotspot allocations and access to the WatchTV platform. The Unlimited Starter plan of the company starts at $60.
- Verizon. This company is an industry leader when it comes to speed and network coverage. The Verizon Start Unlimited is offered at $70 with the Above Unlimited plan boasting a superb 75GB of data monthly, among many other perks.
With these features and promised services, comparing these two providers can be challenging. We understand this. Below, we cover how these two companies match up in terms of prices, availability, and speed.
Speeds – Are They Fast?
If you’re looking for the best speed, then Verizon is your best friend. In many reviews and metrics, the unlimited internet plans of Verizon trump that of AT&T. For example, in the speed tests of OpenSignal, Speed Test, and RootMetric, the company delivered better scores. In terms of advertised speed, AT&T promises up to 1,000 Mbps while Verizon Fios can offer up to 940 Mbps. However, in real life, Verizon offers faster speeds and they are more reliable.
AT&T Pros & Cons
- Bundles for TV lovers
- Great pricing
- Not so great network coverage
Verizon Pros & Cons
- Industry-leading network coverage
- Reliable speed
- Pricey pricing for plans
Monthly Cost, Data Allowance, and Value for Money
Pricing is an important factor for many customers looking to sign up for an internet plan. And yes, the pricing for the plans of both companies is not cheap. As industry leaders, they don’t compete with other ‘smaller service providers’ like Cricket and MetroPCS. The good news is that the pricing has gone down in the last few years. When you check out the plans from AT&T, the pricing for unlimited internet plans start from $65 to $85 monthly which covers a single line. If data sharing is part of your plan and lifestyle, then expect to pay more.
When you check out the pricing for Verizon’s plans, then you can expect a slight increase in prices. The unlimited plans of the company range from $70 to $90 monthly and for the shared data options, the plans range from $45 to $70 depending on the allotment. Keep in mind that these are just prices for the internet and do not include the standard fees and taxes. This means that you will have to pay more for their services. If you’re looking for a discount, you may want to consider the Auto Pay option.
If you’re looking for uninterrupted streaming on Netflix or someone loves playing Fortnite, then you may want to compare the unlimited services of both companies. With AT&T, you can find three unlimited options and Verizon offers three tiers for its unlimited plans.
The basic unlimited internet plan for AT&T is called the Unlimited Plan and Verizon offers the Go Unlimited Plan. AT&T’s option is much cheaper and the main difference between the two plans is the availability of unlimited hotspot for Verizon. For AT&T, there’s no allocation for hotspot and you need to upgrade to its Unlimited Extra Plan to enjoy this service.
Yes, both companies offer unlimited data for their unlimited plans, but they can also ‘throttle’ your data speed at any time. To throttle means to ‘slow down’ and this should be considered when shopping for a provider. In short, ‘unlimited plan’ is actually a misnomer since speeds can slow and it can be a problem for some.
Customer Support – Its Crucial!
Another way to compare service providers is to take a look at their commitment to customer support. As two of the biggest companies, they offer multiple contact channels and support to its customers. Verizon maintains a Community, Help Page, and 24/7 support through phone and email. If you have questions regarding a product, a plan, or a bundled service, you can easily get the information through the Help pages or the Forum. The website delivers all information online so you can easily get the information that you are looking for.
AT&T also offers the same set of services, thus allowing customers to get assistance in real-time. It offers customers with chat and phone support services to provide technical assistance anytime.
Another way to check the quality of support is through the collected industry ratings. For example, J.D. Power conducts ratings for the customer support services offered by the top companies. According to J.D. Power, Verizon’s customer service is one of the best in the business with a score of 822 out of 1,000.
The company has five power circles in 2018 while AT&T which lags behind by 11 points. Keep in mind that both companies offer the same set of contact channels, but they can offer different experiences to customers.
Customer Reviews – What others are saying
If you’re looking for more reasons on why you should choose a specific provider, then make sure to check out the actual reviews from customers. Here are some of the customer reviews and testimonials that you can use when comparing the two providers.
The overall service of AT&T is decent and yes, I use their unlimited internet plan to complete my work and streaming requirements. However, it’s a different thing when we consider its customer support team. The sales team of the company has this habit of adding items to my account without my permission. When I confronted one of the sales agents, they mentioned that they cannot remove the items already added, saying that these items are mandatory. I chose a tablet and added the item knowing that it will only cost me $10 a month. Then I realized, in my billing, that it costs $25.
I’m a customer of Verizon for more than 6 years. A few months ago, I received a letter from them informing me that my account has been hacked and they are ‘sorry’ for the breach. As far as I know, the breach was due to security issues on their part. In this letter, they included a phone number including the hours when I can call. The bad news is that the listed hours don’t work so I just wasted my time contacting them on the schedule they indicated. I hope that they can improve their customer support service.
Service Availability Comparison
In terms of network coverage and availability, Verizon holds the lead over its competition. And if you check out the available coverage map online, you can easily say that indeed, Verizon has a wider reach.
The services of Verizon are available in almost all states, with solid coverage on the Eastern coast including Florida, Georgia, and Virginia. For AT&T, you can also expect wide coverage. It’s the biggest wireless provider in the US so you can expect their services in most US markets. Currently, the internet service from the company is available in more than 30,000 zip codes.
The Best Alternative Internet Providers
AT&T and Verizon are two of the biggest internet and communications providers in the US. Aside from these two companies, you can also count on other providers that deliver the same set of plans, products, and services.
For example, there’s Sprint which is known for its cheaper set of internet packages. With Sprint, you can go for its Unlimited Plus with HD video streaming. This also gives you access to Hulu and 15GB in hotspot.
Xfinity is also a popular option that offers two types of internet connection- cable and fiber. With Xfinity, you can get an unlimited internet plan for $29.99. Another popular service provider that you can check out is CenturyLink. This service provider offers coverage in nearly all states of the US, with the strongest connections in Colorado, Arizona, and Washington.
This company is best known for its DSL connections for residential customers. You may want to review the services offered by other providers when making a decision.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which company offers a cheaper internet service?
Based on our review, AT&T offers relatively cheaper internet plans. But we highly recommend that you always compare the overall value instead of just focusing on the price. Make sure you factor in the bundled services, customer support, and the reliability of the service.
Which ISP offers the best coverage?
Verizon has a wider network coverage and also boasts one of the best network speeds in the US. However, the coverage of AT&T is also solid across the country. To get the right information, make sure you check the network map. These two companies offer the availability map on their respective websites. You can also contact Support to clarify if your area is covered.
What are the perks offered by both carriers?
Aside from unlimited internet with no data cap, both carriers offer perks and bundled services. For example, Verizon offers Disney and AT&T delivers free HBO. Also, both companies offer mobile hotspot data and travel perks.
AT&T and Verizon are the top two companies in the US when it comes to the internet and communications. This alone will tell you that you can count on their internet services. However, you still need to decide between the two. So which is the better company in terms of delivering reliable internet connection?
To fully decide, you need to consider the bright points for each provider. Verizon is the choice when it comes to network coverage and speed. Although AT&T offers solid network coverage, Verizon offers better and more reliable coverage. In terms of speed, Verizon also delivers superb connections through its Fios plans. The published speed is better for AT&T but in actual usage, Verizon delivers consistent high-speed.
If you’re a huge entertainment buff, then the packages from AT&T are worth your time. With this company, you can get HBO Max if you sign up for its Unlimited Elite Plan. Also, AT&T offers cheaper plans compared to Verizon. In the end, the choice of which company or plan to take depends on your actual requirements, budget, and lifestyle. Don’t rush the selection of an internet service provider. Read the customer testimonials and you can use our review to make an informed choice.