Frontier Internet Review 2022

We like Frontier’s Fiber plans and unlimited data, but its customer service and random fees are hard pills to swallow

Frontier
3.8 out of 5 stars
3.75
  • pro
    Great prices for fiber internet plans
  • pro
    Unlimited data for all internet plans
  • con
    Slow DSL speeds
Plan
Price
Download speed
Data cap
Details
Frontier Fiber Internet 500$49.99/mo.500 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber Gig$74.99/mo.940 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig$149.99/mo.2000 MbpsUnlimited
Catherine McNally
Editorial Lead, Internet & Gaming
Read More
February 24, 2022
8 min read

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Frontier has some good things going for it—namely, no data caps, no contracts, and a fiber-optic network.

Between Frontier's Fiber internet service and its DSL service, we think Fiber is the better deal. But we know not everyone has access to fiber internet. That said, Frontier's DSL internet isn't a bad deal, though we wish it offered faster speeds than a max of up to 25 Mbps.

So should you get Frontier internet? Let's dig into the details and find out if Frontier's prices, internet speeds, and data caps make the cut.

Pros
  • Frontier has great prices for fiber internet plans
  • There are DSL internet options for rural areas
  • You get unlimited data for all internet plans
Cons
  • The DSL speeds max out at 25 Mbps
Find Frontier internet plans in your area.

Is Frontier Internet right for you?

Frontier internet is perfect for those who want fiber internet, a type of internet that is fast and reliable but not available everywhere. And if you live in a rural area, Frontier offers DSL internet for a low price.

Frontier’s Fiber internet plans gives you enough download speed for multiple people in the family to use at the same time without seeing a lag in your Netflix movie or your son’s Xbox game. Also, Frontier’s internet service won’t break the bank! 

Frontier internet is available across more than half of the US, but you'll mainly find it in West Virginia, Connecticut, and Illinois.

Frontier internet prices and plans

Prices for Frontier's Fiber plans are limbo low, but you may find better deals when it comes to its DSL plans

If you're lucky enough to live where Frontier's Fiber internet is available, then we recommend getting it.

Fiber internet like this is faster and most often more reliable than cable or DSL internet. And Frontier's fiber internet comes at some of the lowest prices for the speeds you get.

Frontier Fiber internet prices
Plan
Price
Download speed
Data cap
Details
Frontier Fiber Internet 500$49.99/mo.500 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber Gig$74.99/mo.940 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig$149.99/mo.2000 MbpsUnlimited

The fastest Frontier fiber plan with 2,000 Mbps speeds rings in at about $150 a month. That's a pretty average price for gig internet when compared to other internet providers. And if you want the fastest internet possible, then those speeds will certainly do the trick.

Do you need gigabit speeds?
Info Box

Chances are you don't need gig download speeds—unless you've got a large family or a lot of roommates using your internet connection to stream, game, upload YouTube videos, and work from home.

We'll help you figure out which speed is right for you in our guide to download speeds.

That said, you may not need gigabit internet speeds if you're a smaller family who just streams an HD movie or two on the weekend. And the prices for Frontier Fiber Internet 500/500 Mbps plan is even better than the price for its gigabit plan. So, we'd say you're looking at a win-win if you go for either of these plans.

But if you don't live in an area where Frontier Fiber internet is available, you're not out of luck. Frontier also has DSL options that come at fairly low prices—but its DSL speeds max out at up to 25 Mbps.

Frontier DSL internet prices
Plan
Price
Download speed
Data cap
Details
Frontier Internet$49.99/mo.N/A MbpsUnlimited

Still, if Frontier DSL is all you've got, know that it's all right. For about $40 a month, you get up to 25 Mbps download speeds and unlimited data

But we wouldn't recommend download speeds a slow as Frontier's up to 6 and up to 25 Mbps plans for anyone doing some serious online activities. (Think working from home, gaming, or streaming a lot of YouTube videos.) And if you've got more than two people using the internet in your home, you'll likely need more speed.

That said, we know that Frontier DSL internet might be one of your only—if not the only—choice in your area. Still, we recommend checking out these other rural internet options to see if you have any alternatives.

Where can you get Frontier internet service?

Frontier internet is available across most of the US, but you'll mainly find it in West Virginia, Connecticut, and Illinois.

Frontier coverage map

How does Frontier compare to Xfinity, CenturyLink, and others?

To be honest with you, Frontier doesn't have a place in our top 8 internet service providers

Frontier's availability is limited and the customer service rating is quite low compared to other providers like Earthlink and CenturyLink based on customer reviews.

But we must warn you: Frontier has a bad reputation for not delivering on its advertised download and upload speeds and its DSL service is pretty bad, according to customer reviews.

Check out our top ISP's if you'd rather order from a reliable internet company (hard choice, we know). 

Frontier internet comparison
Provider
Monthly price
Download speeds
Data cap
Learn more
Frontier$49.99$149.995002000 MbpsUnlimited
Xfinity$39.99$79.993001200 Mbps1.2 TB
Verizon Authorized Dealer$49.99$119.993002048 MbpsUnlimited
Centurylink$30$70100940 MbpsUnlimited
Earthlink$49.95$189.95105000 Mbps50 GBUnlimited

And if you mostly use the internet for your home business, freelancing, or streaming on YouTube, you might want to consider the Gig Service plan. With 2000 Mbps download speeds, you won't have to worry that your hour-long Zoom meeting will put a damper on your kiddos' Disney+ time.

Frontier internet speed

Frontier maintains fast internet speeds, earning 12th place out of 38 ISPs we analyzed

Frontier's Fiber internet service comes in 500 and 940 Mbps download speeds, which pretty much suits any need you could have.

The 500 Mbps plan offers great speeds for medium- to large-sized families—or homes full of roommates. These download speeds should support more than a few people streaming, gaming, and working from home all at the same time. (Especially since it's a fiber connection, which gives you reliably fast upload speeds too.)

Frontier Fiber internet download and upload speeds
Plan
Download speed
Upload speed
Frontier Fiber Internet 500500 Mbps500 Mbps
Frontier Fiber Gig940 Mbps880 Mbps
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig2000 Mbps2000 Mbps

And if you mostly use the internet for your home business, freelancing, or streaming on YouTube, you might want to consider the Gig Service plan. With 2000 Mbps download speeds, you won't have to worry that your hour-long Zoom meeting will put a damper on your kiddos' Disney+ time.

Do I need fast upload speeds?
Pin

You likely won't need to worry about upload speeds unless you upload a lot of large files to the internet. This includes attaching PDFs and giant spreadsheets to your email so you can get them to your boss for the deadline.

With 50 to 880 Mbps upload speeds, Frontier's Fiber internet plan upload speeds should keep things running smoothly no matter what you're uploading. That's the magic of fiber internet.

But its DSL internet plans may struggle to get your newest YouTube video or photo gallery uploaded in a timely manner. Frontier doesn't list upload speeds for these plans, but we'd imagine they're 10 Mbps or lower.

On the other end of the Frontier speed spectrum is its DSL plans. Its fastest plan can reach up to 25 Mbps speeds, but DSL tends to be less reliable in terms of speed performance. That's mainly because it's an older technology.

We wouldn't recommend grabbing anything slower than Frontier's up to 25 Mbps DSL plan if you can avoid it.

Even 25 Mbps is pretty slow—especially if you have more than one person or multiple devices using your internet at the same time. That's because the more people or devices that use your internet, the more speed you need to keep everyone's internet connection running smoothly.

Frontier DSL internet download speeds
Plan
Download speed
Frontier InternetN/A Mbps

How fast is Frontier internet?

But how does Frontier's internet speed stack up? Not too bad, actually.

In our latest analysis of the fastest internet providers in the US, Frontier ranked 12th out of 38 ISPs. That puts it ahead of other well-known internet providers like Spectrum, AT&T, and Cox.

Frontier internet speed score1
Provider
Reviews.org weighted score
Frontier Internet

36 out of 100

One thing to note is that this weighted score isn't representative of any download speeds you'll get from Frontier. Instead, it's a combination of the average download and upload speeds, plus latency.

That said, Frontier's score is a lot lower than we expected. Other fiber internet providers scored much higher: Google Fiber topped our list with 75.6 out of 100, and Verizon Fios Home Internet was a close second with 65.1 out of 100.

Frontier's low score is likely due to its slow DSL internet service. So we can hazard a guess that Frontier Fiber internet speeds will be good, but its DSL speeds will be lackluster.

Frontier internet data caps

A big selling point for Frontier is that it doesn’t put any data caps on its plans. That’s right: zero caps—even on its DSL plans.

Frontier doesn’t even do that sneaky thing some internet providers do where their data is “technically” unlimited, but there are actually soft data caps—after which your speed slows down to a slow crawl. (We’re looking at you, satellite internet providers.)

Unlimited data is especially important in today's day and age as most of us continue to work, study, and play at home. If you're like us, you've found that your data usage spiked over the last few years. So not paying for extra data is definitely a blessing.

Frontier contracts, equipment, and fees

Frontier recently did away with a handful of confusing fees, making it easier to get a handle on your monthly bill

We're pleased as punch to not see any mention of contracts on both Frontier Fiber and DSL plans. That doesn't mean your monthly bill won't go up after the 12-month promotional period, but it gives you the freedom to change things up without paying a penalty.

Frontier equipment

The Frontier Fiber Gateway Router is an Arris NVG468MQ wireless gateway. That means it can be used as a modem and a router, and comes with Frontier Wi-Fi already set up. And it comes included with any Fiber internet plan. *fist pump*

The gateway used to cost $10 a month to rent, and Frontier used to charge you the rental fee even if you brought your own modem and router. In late 2020, a law was passed that now bans ISPs like Frontier from charging you a rental fee for your own router.1

Frontier service fees

Just like any other internet provider, Frontier's service comes with a few fees. Though we're excited to say it recently trimmed these fees down. So, aside from taxes, which change based on your location, here's what you can expect to pay in terms of Frontier fees:

  • Activation fee: $85 one-time fee
  • Disconnect fee: $10 one-time fee when your service is disconnected
  • Installation fee: None
  • Equipment rental fee: None, equipment is included with your Fiber internet plan

Frontier customer service

According to the scores, Frontier has the worst customer service out of all internet providers

No ISP gets amazing marks for customer service, but even among the bad, Frontier is dead last. The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) gives Frontier’s customer service a low score of 57, which ranks it below 10 other ISPs—and an eleventh catch-all category of "All Others."

Frontier internet ACSI score 20212
Provider
ACSI 2021 score
Frontier Internet

57 out of 100

Like with most ISPs, we recommend using online chat instead of phone calls. But watch out—Frontier’s live chat feature can be a little unreliable. It’s not available 24/7 and it can have some long wait times that make you wish you’d just called.

So if you don't hear back on chat, schedule a call back or pick up the telephone and give Frontier a call.

Recap: Is Frontier internet good?

  • Pricing: We think Frontier's Fiber internet service is the better deal, but we like that it also offers DSL service to country-dwelling folks out there.
  • Data limits: Frontier also lets its customers live the unlimited data dream—even if they have its DSL internet.
  • Fees and contracts: We're thankful that Frontier recently trimmed down its fees and swapped to no contracts.
  • Equipment: Oh, and your equipment is now included with your internet plan.
  • Customer service: Still, it has some work to do in the customer service area.
Plan
Price
Download speed
Data cap
Frontier Internet$49.99/mo.N/A MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber Internet 500$49.99/mo.500 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber Gig$74.99/mo.940 MbpsUnlimited
Frontier Fiber 2 Gig$149.99/mo.2000 MbpsUnlimited
Look for Frontier internet plans in your area.

Methodology

We base our ratings and reviews off of these five criteria:

  • Prices
  • Availability
  • Speed scores
  • Customer service scores
  • Connection type

After comparing the criteria, we give you our honest recommendation and let you know if this internet service provider is worth your money compared to the others ISPs in the industry.

FAQs

Why does Frontier have a bad reputation?

To put it simply, Frontier has a bad reputation for not delivering on its advertised download speeds and its DSL service is pretty bad, according to customer reviews.

Unfortunately, Frontier declared bankruptcy in 2020, but they're on a mission to gain consumers' trust back.

Is Frontier internet good for streaming?

For streaming your favorite movies and TV shows, we'd actually recommend Xfinity internet, CenturyLink internet, or Verizon internet. 

They're more reliable, speedy, and fairly priced. No one likes to see the word "buffering" in the middle of an intense action scene. 

Sources

Catherine McNally
Written by
Catherine McNally
Catherine has a degree in journalism and an MBA, and has spent the last 10+ years writing everything from Okinawa travel guides to stories on Medium. She’s been online since AOL CDs were a thing and is an unapologetic PC gamer. She believes the internet is a necessity, not a luxury, and writes reviews and guides to help everyone stay connected. You can also find her on Twitter: @CMReviewsIt.

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