Pennsylvania the City of Brotherly Love, is known for its rich history and vibrant culture. But when it comes to choosing the right home internet provider, the options can be overwhelming. In this article, we'll break down the best internet providers in Pennsylvania, their features, and pricing, as well as explore affordable options for low-income households. We'll also discuss the importance of internet speed and what you need for various online activities.
In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, two major players stand out as top internet providers - Verizon Fios and Xfinity. Let's take a closer look at what makes them stand out.
Additionally, Verizon offers 5G Home Internet service, which can be a cost-effective option for those who qualify. Let's not forget other Pennsylvania internet providers like T-Mobile and local fixed wireless provider PhillyWhisper.
|Download Speed Range (Mbps)
|$25 to $60/month
|300 to 1200 Mbps
|25 Mbps or Higher
|T-Mobile Home Internet
|72 to 245 Mbps
|Verizon 5G Home Internet
|$50 to $70/month
|300 to 940 Mbps
These internet providers in Pennsylvania may not be the absolute best but they could be worth considering if you're looking for alternatives.
Astound Broadband - Formerly known as RCN, Astound offers affordable plans in certain areas, but watch out for potential price increases after the initial period.
HughesNet - While available everywhere, it's better suited for rural areas with limited alternatives.
PhillyWhisper - Offers local fixed wireless internet but might not match the value of larger providers.
T-Mobile Home Internet - Another 5G option, but it may not provide the same speed potential as Verizon.
Viasat - Like HughesNet, it's a rural internet solution and not the best option for urban areas like Pennsylvania.
Your internet options and pricing in Philadelphia can vary based on your location. While Astound and 5G home internet from Verizon and T-Mobile offer some affordable plans, most users can expect to pay at least $40 to $50 per month for home internet. Here are some of the cost-effective internet plans available.
|Starting Monthly Cost
|Maximum Download Speed (Mbps)
|Astound 300 Mbps
|$25/month (Pennsylvania only)
|Xfinity Connect More
|Verizon 5G Home Internet
|$25/month (with 50% discount)
|T-Mobile Home Internet
|$30/month (with a $20 discount)
If you qualify, the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) can provide a $30 monthly credit toward home internet service. You can apply this credit to services from Philadelphia providers, including Verizon, T-Mobile, and Xfinity.
Xfinity also offers an affordable internet program called Internet Essentials, with speeds up to 100 Mbps starting at $10 a month. No credit checks or contracts are required, and service is free when combined with the ACP credit.
Verizon doesn't have a specific low-income plan, but they offer prepaid internet options that, when combined with ACP, can provide speeds of up to 300 Mbps for around $20 a month with no contracts, credit checks, or monthly equipment fees.
Despite the availability of gigabit plans from Xfinity and Verizon throughout Pennsylvania, average tested speeds in the city are lower than the state and national averages. However, these are just averages, and your actual speeds could be higher depending on your provider and plan.
Xfinity leads the way in terms of speed, whether your address is eligible for fiber internet service or not. Xfinity's fastest plan, Gigabit Pro, offers blazing download and upload speeds of up to 6,000 Mbps over a 100% fiber connection, but it's available at limited locations and comes at a higher price. Even over a cable connection, Xfinity offers download speeds of up to 1,200 Mbps.
Astound also offers a 1,200 Mbps plan, with a lower starting price than Xfinity, but it's primarily available just outside Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The internet speed you need depends on your online activities. Here's an overview of recommended minimum download speeds for various applications, according to the FCC.
0 to 5 Mbps - Browsing the internet, sending and receiving emails, streaming low-quality video.
5 to 40 Mbps - Higher-quality video streaming and videoconferencing.
40 to 100 Mbps - Sufficient bandwidth for modern telecommuting, video streaming, and online gaming for one user.
100 to 500 Mbps - Allows one to two users to engage in high-bandwidth activities simultaneously.
500 to 1,000 Mbps - Allows three or more users to engage in high-bandwidth activities simultaneously.
So, Pennsylvania offers a variety of internet options to meet your specific needs. Whether you're looking for fast speeds, affordable plans, or options for low-income households, there's a solution for everyone in the City of Brotherly Love. Just be sure to consider your location and specific requirements when choosing the best Pennsylvania internet providers for your requirements.