WOW! Internet Review

No data caps, low prices, and a good selection of plans have us saying “Wow!” about WOW! Internet. (We so went there.)
No data caps, low prices, and a good selection of plans have us saying “Wow!” about WOW! Internet. (We so went there.)
Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Price:
$29.99–$89.99/mo.
Speed:
10–1,000 Mbps
Connection type:
Cable

Overview

If you’re looking for a cheap internet plan in the South or Midwest, you should check out WOW! Internet.

While the company name may seem overly excitable (think “corny 1990s commercials for kids’ toys” excitable), WOW!’s prices and lack of data caps may actually make you say, well, you know. . .

WOW! Internet pricing

PlanSpeedPrice*Learn more
Internet 1010 Mbps$29.99/mo.View Plan
Internet 100100 Mbps$39.99/mo.**View Plan
Internet 500500 Mbps$59.99/mo.**View Plan
Internet 10001,000 Mbps$79.99/mo.**View Plan

* Price at time of writing. Prices and plan availability may vary by location.
** Price per month for 24 months with a 2-year agreement.

Pros

  • No data caps
  • TV and phone bundling options

Cons

  • Mixed reviews
  • Limited to the South and Midwest only

WOW! Internet prices and plans

Hold up—are WOW! Internet prices really that cheap? You bet.

WOW! Internet pricing with a contract

PlanSpeedPrice*Learn more
Internet 1010 Mbps$29.99/mo.View Plan
Internet 100100 Mbps$39.99/mo.**View Plan
Internet 500500 Mbps$59.99/mo.**View Plan
Internet 10001,000 Mbps$79.99/mo.**View Plan

* Price at time of writing. Prices and plan availability may vary by location.
** Price per month for 24 months with a 2-year agreement.

Compared to other top internet service providers (ISPs), WOW! Internet pricing leans heavily toward the low end. Even CenturyLink, which is usually a cheaper pick, costs up to $25 more per month.

Of course, if you’re anti-contract, be aware: you’ll nab these low prices only with a two-year agreement. (Except for the Internet 10 package, which always costs $29.99 per month.)

Here’s what you’ll pay for the convenience of that no-contract option.

WOW! Internet pricing without a contract

PlanSpeedPrice*Learn more
Internet 1010 Mbps$29.99/mo.View Plan
Internet 100100 Mbps$49.99/mo.View Plan
Internet 500500 Mbps$69.99/mo.View Plan
Internet 10001,000 Mbps$89.99/mo.View Plan

* Price at time of writing. Prices and plan availability may vary by location.

But even those no-contract prices are competitive. And with four speed options—up to a ludicrous speed of 1,000 Mbps (or 1 Gbps)—there’s a WOW! Internet plan for most anyone.

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What are Mbps and Gbps?

Mbps—or megabits per second—and Gbps (gigabits per second) are measurements of your download speed, also called bandwidth. The more Mbps you have, the faster your download speed should be. (But don’t just look at the number alone: 1 Gbps is equal to 1,000 Mbps.)

Learn more in our quick Mbps guide.

Is WOW! in my area?

Here’s a full list of places where you’ll find WOW!.

  • Alabama: Auburn, Dothan, Huntsville, Montgomery, and Valley
  • Florida: Panama City and Pinellas
  • Georgia: Augusta, Columbus, and Fort Gordon
  • Illinois: Chicago City, Chicagoland
  • Indiana: Evansville
  • Michigan: Detroit and Mid-Michigan
  • Ohio: Cleveland and Columbus
  • South Carolina: Charleston
  • Tennessee: Knoxville

Coming soon: Amherst, OH and Fort Branch, IN

If you live in Amherst, Ohio, or Fort Branch, Indiana, we’ve got good news! WOW! Internet plans on expanding to your area, hopefully by the end of 2018.

WOW! equipment and fees

Signing up for WOW! Internet means you’ll need to purchase or rent a modem. If you decide to rent, the rental fee is $7 per month for a cable modem and $10 per month for a wireless modem.

To save money in the long run, we recommend buying your own modem (like this one on Amazon). Of course, your modem will need to be compatible with WOW!, so it’s a good idea to check WOW!’s modem compatibility list before you get one shipped to your door.

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Want Wi-Fi? You might need extra equipment.

If you’re eyeing up that full gig of speed on the Internet 1,000 plan, you’ll also need to pair that cable modem with WOW! Power Wi-Fi, which costs an extra $10 each month.

If you go without the WOW! Power Wi-Fi, you won’t get a wireless signal and that smart TV, tablet, or laptop won’t be able to connect to the internet without being plugged in with an ethernet cable. You know, old school style.

WOW! speeds and data caps

With no data caps and a top 10 performance rating from Netflix, WOW! is one of a kind.

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FYI

We usually rely on the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) “Measuring Broadband America” report to rank ISPs by actual-to-advertised speeds.2

However, the FCC hasn’t published a new report since December 2016, and that 2016 report doesn’t include data on WOW! Internet.

As of May 2018, WOW! ranks eighth on Netflix’s ISP Speed Index.1

To give you a better idea of what that means, that’s eighth out of 67 ISPs that Netflix analyzed to measure “prime time Netflix performance.” (But keep in mind this measure of performance won’t necessarily translate to other things you do online.)

Another huge draw to WOW! is that it has no data caps.

You heard us right. While some ISPs advertise no data caps but still throttle (or slow) your download speeds after you’ve used a certain amount of data, WOW! doesn’t. So go ahead—stream Rick and Morty to your heart’s content.

WOW! Internet customer service ratings

WOW! Internet reviews are like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’re gonna get.

OK—time to address the elephant in the room. ISPs get a bad rap when it comes to customer service. We’re not saying those one-star reviews aren’t deserved, but we wanted to set some expectations for you. (TL;DR: don’t expect much.)

Now you can understand why we were surprised to see a mixed bag of reviews for WOW! Internet.3, 4

Some folks had a rough time with the rental modem (another reason to buy your own?) and service outages. But other reviewers reported a fantastic experience with the performance and customer service.

Our advice

Buy your own modem on Amazon (and make sure it’s compatible with WOW! first). If you’re experiencing issues with your speed or want a better price, do your research before calling WOW!’s customer service.

Check your actual speed on a site like High Speed Internet, and call in only after you’ve researched offers from other ISPs. Also, don’t be afraid to (nicely) ask for a manager if the person on the other end can’t help you.

The bottom line—is WOW! Internet worth it?

If WOW! is available in your area, we say go for it.

Going into this WOW! Internet review, we expected the same old story. The internet is something we all need, but it’s not cynical to say that ISPs are hit or miss. Sadly, that’s just reality.

But we admit we’re pleasantly surprised by WOW! Internet. Sure, it has its problems like older modems and service outages, but we really like no data caps and speeds up to 1,000 Mbps. And then there are the good reviews that make us feel WOW!’s customer service isn’t just the same old frustrating experience.

Recap

  • WOW! Internet is available in the South and Midwest.
  • Prices for WOW! are lower than the competition.
  • You can sign a two-year agreement—or pay $10 more per month for no contract.
  • WOW! has no data caps—download all the games!
  • Netflix ranked WOW!’s performance 8th out of 67 ISPs in May 2018.
  • Customers gave WOW! mixed reviews.

FAQs

Q: How fast is my WOW! Internet?

Curious how to test your WOW! Internet speed? It’s pretty easy.

Pay a visit to High Speed Internet’s online speed test—that’ll tell you exactly how fast your download and upload speeds are.

If your results on the speed test are lower than the speed you’re paying for, it might be time to give WOW! a call to see if it can fix the issue on its end.

Q: Why is WOW! Internet down?

Is WOW! down in your area, or is it just you? There’s nothing like a “No internet connection” notification to make us a bit paranoid that we’re the only ones out there with connection issues.

Luckily, you can check the status of WOW! on DownDetector.com. If there’s no WOW! Internet outage reported in your area, you should give WOW! customer service a call to let them know there’s an issue and get them working on a fix right away.

Q: Who owns WOW! Internet?

WOW! Internet is currently not owned by any other ISP or telecommunications company. However, WOW! did purchase Broadstripe LLC in 2011, Knology in 2012, and NuLink in 2016.5, 6, 7

And by the way, you may also see it called WideOpenWest, Inc.—yup, that’s where the “WOW!” comes from.

Sources

1.   Netflix, “Netflix ISP Speed Index
2.   Federal Communications Commission (FCC), “Measuring Fixed Broadband Report – 2016
3.   DSL Reports, “WOW! Internet and Cable
4.   Consumer Affairs, “WOW! Internet Cable and Phone
5.   WOW! Internet, “Wave Broadband and WOW! Internet, Cable, and Phone to Acquire Broadstripe
6.   PR Newswire, “WOW! Completes Knology Acquisition
7.   PR Newswire, “WOW! Closes Acquisition of NuLink to Provide High-Speed Internet, Cable TV and Phone Service to Metro Atlanta