AT&T vs Cox: Which Internet Provider Is Best for You?
Choosing an ISP for your home can be one of the most important decisions you make. So much can depend upon it because we use the internet for almost everything now. There is a lot to consider for instance the speed, bandwidth, data caps, and availability. So, it can get even more daunting when your choice depends upon AT&T vs Cox. Both ISPs have their own merits and demerits. So, which one is better?
The short and simple answer for this would be, it depends. Because what you use the internet for and where you live might be significant variables. And it can be different for each user. So, deciding on which ISP is better for you can be a relative choice. But you still need to do your homework before you choose between the two.
How to Make the AT&T vs Cox Comparison?
Making the choice between two major internet service providers might be straightforward. But it isn’t that hard either. Instead of getting overwhelmed by the options, you should make a list of things to consider. The most important thing might be available in your area. So, if AT&T internet plans aren’t available in your area, that option goes out the window.
Similarly, you should also consider your usage and how much data you require. The maximum data caps and bandwidth information could also make a difference. Moreover, most people can ignore customer service and satisfaction while choosing an ISP. But you should give an edge to an ISP with a better support team.
What Areas Do the ISPs Cover?
The first thing you should check for is availability. Especially if you are considering the AT&T bundles. The provider does not offer its fiber plans in all states. The most recent data by the company suggests that only 30% of its users have access to fiber optic. However, it has an extensive ADSL and fixed wireless network all over the country. They cover a lot of the West and Midwest rural areas that Cox doesn’t.
Cox covers less than 20 states in the USA and only offers cable internet deals to all their users. So, you might not have the FiOS option. Moreover, most of its coverage areas include urban and urban-adjacent areas. So, for AT&T vs Cox availability, the former is the wider network option.
What Charges Should You Expect on Your Bill?
When it comes to AT&T and Cox internet, you can expect some additional charges on your bill. They can include service charges, annual fees, or equipment fee adjustments. So, here are some of the fees you might have to pay:
1: Installation Fees
Both ISPs can ask for an installation fee if you require professional help. You can skip the professional fees by requesting a Cox self-installation kit. It might be doable for home users, but the setup can get complicated for Cox business internet connections. So, the fee might not be avoidable for you. Similarly, you can get a free self-installation kit from AT&T as well. But it isn’t available everywhere thus the installation fee can be unavoidable.
2: Equipment Fees
Both companies charge equipment rental fees for modems and routers you use. As long as you have a router that Cox approves of, you can skip this fee. However, that is not possible with AT&T. The gateway device and router fees are mandatory with AT&T. So, if you have invested in a good router, you might want to consider Cox.
3: Contract and Cancellation Fees
Many people don’t want to commit to one ISP for long. This is because they have no idea when they might move somewhere else. Or they might not like the service and want to change it. So, for such people, fixed contracts could be a deal-breaker. AT&T does not force a contract on any of its users so you can come and go as you please.
Opposingly, Cox can make you sign a one-year or two-year contract with them. It is especially the case with users who sign up with a promo rate or an unlimited package. So, if you want to shift ISPs before the contract ends, you will probably have to pay a cancellation fee. So, in the AT&T vs Cox battle, AT&T might have the edge here.
4: Data Caps
Data caps can be tough to get around with both ISPs. AT&T can offer unlimited data with most of its fiber optic bundles. But the ADSL and fixed wireless connections can have a data cap. There are additional charges if you exceed the cap. So, it can get expensive with the penalties.
However, Cox applies data caps to all of its packages. Moreover, the penalties are also the same as AT&T. So, if you use other services like Cox Contour TV you might need a bigger data cap. Otherwise, the penalties can stack up and you’ll have to pay a big fat amount. Cox can waive off your penalties for the first month if you exceed the cap. So, there is always some hope for the new users.
The ISP comparison can be daunting even when you have all the facts. If you consider the coverage availability and customer satisfaction surveys, then AT&T fiber plans could be the better choice. You can also enjoy AT&T TV plans without worrying about data caps.
However, AT&T’s ADSL packages might lag behind Cox. The packages offer more flexible data caps and much better speeds. In areas where fiber is not an option, the Cox fixed wireless and cable internet might be a better option.