How you choose between CenturyLink and Optimum will largely depend on your needs and what you want to see from your network.
It can be stressful to do your research on various services and telecommunication providers, especially similar providers like Optimum and CenturyLink. This review is all about comparing the two, and examining various aspects of their services and features, and help you make a more comprehensive decision that works for you.
A summary of the differences between CenturyLink and Optimum
Range from $50 monthly to $65 monthly (for new customers)
Range from $29.99 monthly to $79.99 monthly
Set up fees for professional installations
Between $99 and $125
If you want to avoid contracts and price hikes
If you want fast internet for high-bandwidth activities
CenturyLink vs. Optimum – How do they compare?
Set up process and costs
If you want free installation from both Optimum and CenturyLink, it is available on their websites – you can either choose the self-installation route or go for professional installations. In the case of Optimum, they will charge you a one-time fee of $99 if you opt for a scheduled professional installation – this will include setting up the Wi-Fi for a maximum of six devices, setting up your account, and hardwiring one device. If you want to set up additional devices, you will then upgrade to premium installation that costs between $59 and $129.
CenturyLink will allow for both professional and self-installation, although the self-installation method is only available in specific areas. Regardless of your preference, you will need to pay $150 if you want aerial delivery, and $300 if you need copper wiring buried near your home. If you opt for professional installation, you will pay a one-time fee of between $99 and $125, with the connection catering for up to five devices.
Between the two, Optimum has the relatively cheaper installation costs, and it covers more devices once installed, making it the preferable choice.
CenturyLink relies on DSL connections for its internet users, also referred to as Digital Subscriber Line. This is among the oldest internet setups, as it uses phone lines to connect to the internet and transfer data. On the other hand, Optimum uses both fiber and cable connections for its internet usage, making its speeds much higher as fiber allows for faster uploads and higher bandwidth.
However, the disadvantage with Optimum’s reliance on fiber is the limited availability due to high installation costs, while CenturyLink is more widely available in both urban and rural areas.
Optimum has higher speeds compared to CenturyLink, making it the winner of this comparison, despite its limited availability.
Options available for both internet and TV
Optimum offers three options in their internet plans, costing between $39.99 and $79.99 monthly depending on the speeds you want that range from 300 Mbps to 940 Mbps. On the other hand, CenturyLink has two internet plans; the $50 monthly Unlimited internet that has a maximum speed of 100 Mbps, while their fiber option costs $65 monthly and has maximum speeds of 940 Mbps.
Their telephone and TV services have major differences, though. Optimum will give you a telephone service costing $29.99 monthly, and they have FlexAbility options that combine internet with TV. However, CenturyLink does not have a TV service; instead, they offer partnerships with DISH, AT&T TV, and DIRECTV, which will allow you to use the CenturyLink internet service with the TV package. The total costs of these combined packages can go up to $100 monthly, or $50 monthly if you only choose the streaming package.
Since Optimum has more combination options for both internet and TV at cheaper costs, they win this round.
CenturyLink vs. Optimum – A comparison review
CenturyLink commits itself to low pricing terms – and you can trust them to avoid slapping contracts, price hikes, and data caps, earning them the tag of reliability among ISPs today. They have excellent promotional pricing as well – until the 1-year period ends and your bill suddenly increases. There is some good news though, as the prices are negotiable, and you will not need to worry about sudden or mysterious price hikes even afterwards.
When signing up for their service, it is a good idea to set your account for paperless billing to access all its benefits, and keep in mind that monthly bills may change if you move or swap internet plans. The only disadvantage of note is the lack of wi-fi hotspot setups even when signing to their services, so there are other alternatives you can explore if switching hotspots is a must for you.
- They provide unlimited data for all their plans
- Users in select cities can choose the Gig Fiber internet option
- No cancellation fees and no contracts
- Not so good in speed performance
- Hotspots are unavailable in many areas
In many ways, Optimum has positioned itself in the cellular network scene, especially if you live in New York and need an ISP with high overall value, low pricing, and fast speeds. They offer their plans with a low equipment fee, unlimited data, and no contracts, so choosing them seems like an obvious choice.
With that said, they have a few drawbacks that can easily take away their appeal, such as the abrupt changes in their pricing plans after the first year and speed changes. What is important to note is that internet speeds will vary depending on your location and the package you pay for, such as 3 Mbps upload speed/50 Mbps download speed on the $15 monthly Optimum Advantage plan, or 35 Mbps upload/940 Mbps download speeds on the $50 monthly 1 Gig plan.
- Provide high speeds at low pricing
- No contracts and no data caps
- Most plans have a Price for Life guarantee
- Low-priced wi-fi and high-tech service quality
- Unpredictability in price increases after 12 months
- Lower upload speeds, which tend to drop lower for newer customers
- Their service is limited in availability
Conclusion: So, which is the better option? Optimum or CenturyLink?
Between the two, we realize that Optimum is the better choice as it offers more options on what you can do with your internet subscription, as well as primarily relying on fiber connections that give you higher internet speeds.
Can I get internet-only plans on CenturyLink?
Yes, you can. They offer two internet-only plans, the Simply Unlimited Internet costing $50 monthly, and the Fiber Internet plan costing $65 monthly.
Which Optimum Internet speed is best for me?
It depends on your consumption needs, as the speeds range from 300 Mbps on wired connections to 1 Gig that caters to large networks and heavy bandwidth usage.