AT&T vs Cox Internet: Which is the Better Choice for You?

Choosing the right internet service provider (ISP) can be a daunting task, especially when there are so many options available. Two popular choices among consumers are AT&T and Cox. In this article, we will take a deep dive into both ISPs, comparing their internet plans, speeds, data caps, contracts, and customer service to help you make an informed decision.

AT&T Overview

AT&T Internet Plans

AT&T offers a variety of internet plans to suit different needs and budgets. Their plans include:

  1. AT&T Fiber – Gigabit-speed internet with symmetrical upload and download speeds.
  2. AT&T Internet – DSL-based plans with speeds ranging from 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps.
PlanPriceDownload SpeedUpload SpeedsData CapType
AT&T 10 Mbps$69.99/mo.10 Mbps1 Mbps350 GBFixed Wireless
Internet 10$55/mo.10 Mbps1 Mbps1 TBDSL
Internet 18$55/mo.18 Mbps 1 Mbps 1 TBDSL
Internet 25 $55/mo.25 Mbps 2 Mbps 1 TBDSL
Internet 50$55/mo.50 Mbps10 Mbps1 TBDSL
Internet 100 $55/mo.100 Mbps 20 Mbps NoneDSL
Fiber 300$55/mo.300 Mbps300 MbpsNoneFiber 
Fiber 500$65/mo.500 Mbps500 MbpsNoneFiber 
Fiber 1 Gig$80/mo.940 Mbps880 MbpsNoneFiber 
Fiber 2 Gig$110/mo.2 Gbps2 GbpsNoneFiber 
Fiber 5 Gig$180/mo.5 Gbps5 GbpsNoneFiber 

AT&T Speeds

AT&T’s Fiber plans boast gigabit speeds, with 940 Mbps download and 880 Mbps upload speeds. Their DSL-based plans offer a range of speeds, from 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps, depending on your location and the plan you choose.

AT&T Data Caps and Contracts

AT&T Fiber plans come with unlimited data, while their DSL-based plans have a 1 TB monthly data cap. Exceeding this limit can result in additional charges or throttled speeds. AT&T offers a 12-month contract for new customers, with a discount applied for the first 12 months.

Cox Overview

Cox Internet Plans

Cox provides a variety of high-speed internet plans, including:

  1. Cox Gigablast – Gigabit-speed internet with up to 940 Mbps download speeds.
  2. Cox Ultimate – 500 Mbps download speeds.
  3. Cox Preferred – 150 Mbps download speeds.
  4. Cox Essential – 50 Mbps download speeds.

Cox Speeds

Cox’s Gigablast plan offers 940 Mbps download and 35 Mbps upload speeds. Their other plans vary in speeds from 50 Mbps to 500 Mbps, depending on the plan you choose.

Cox Data Caps and Contracts

Cox internet plans come with a 1.25 TB monthly data cap. If you exceed this limit, you may face additional charges or slower speeds. Cox offers a 12-month contract for new customers, with a discount applied during the first 12 months.

AT&T vs Cox – Detailed Comparison

Speed

Both AT&T and Cox offer gigabit-speed internet plans, with AT&T Fiber and Cox Gigablast providing similar download speeds of 940 Mbps. However, AT&T Fiber offers faster upload speeds (880 Mbps) compared to Cox Gigablast (35 Mbps). When considering their other plans, AT&T and Cox provide varying speeds depending on the plan and location.

Pricing

Pricing for AT&T and Cox internet plans can vary based on location, but here’s a general overview:

  1. AT&T Fiber starts at around $60 per month for their gigabit-speed plan.
  2. AT&T’s DSL-based plans range from $45 to $65 per month.
  3. Cox Gigablast starts at around $99 per month.
  4. Other Cox plans range from $29.99 to $79.99 per month.

AT&T tends to offer more affordable gigabit-speed plans, while Cox offers lower-priced plans for those who don’t require the fastest speeds. However, it’s essential to consider additional fees and charges, such as equipment rental and installation fees, which may vary between providers.

Customer Service – AT&T vs Cox

Both AT&T and Cox strive to offer reliable customer service, but their reputation varies. According to the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), AT&T scored 68/100, while Cox scored 63/100 in 2021. This indicates that AT&T customers, on average, are more satisfied with the customer service they receive compared to Cox customers.

Availability – AT&T vs Cox

AT&T and Cox have different service areas, with AT&T having a broader coverage area across the United States. AT&T is available in 21 states, while Cox is available in 18 states. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that either provider will be available in your specific location. It’s crucial to check the availability of both ISPs in your area before making a decision.

Additional Factors – AT&T vs Cox

When comparing AT&T and Cox, it’s essential to consider additional factors that may influence your decision. Here are a few more aspects to keep in mind:

Equipment and Installation Fees

Both AT&T and Cox charge equipment rental and installation fees, which can impact the overall cost of your internet service. AT&T offers a Wi-Fi gateway rental for $10 per month, while Cox charges $10.99 per month for their modem and router combo. Installation fees can vary depending on your location and if there are any promotions available. It’s essential to factor in these additional costs when comparing the two providers.

Bundling Options

If you’re interested in bundling your internet service with TV and phone services, both AT&T and Cox offer attractive options. AT&T provides AT&T TV and DIRECTV for television services and digital home phone service. Cox offers their Contour TV and digital home phone service. Bundling these services can result in significant savings and simplify your monthly bills. Be sure to compare the bundle offers from both providers to determine which one best meets your needs.

Customer Reviews and Testimonials

While the ACSI provides an overall score for customer satisfaction, it’s also important to consider individual customer reviews and testimonials. Online review sites, such as Consumer Affairs and Trustpilot, can provide valuable insights into the experiences of actual customers with AT&T and Cox. Keep in mind that individual experiences can vary, and it’s crucial to weigh both positive and negative reviews to get a comprehensive understanding of each provider.

Promotions and Discounts

Both AT&T and Cox frequently offer promotions and discounts for new customers, such as reduced pricing for the first 12 months, waived installation fees, or free equipment rentals. When comparing the two providers, it’s essential to consider any current promotions and factor them into the overall cost of your internet service.

Reliability and Network Performance

Another essential aspect to consider when comparing AT&T and Cox is the reliability and network performance of each provider. A stable and consistently fast internet connection is crucial for a seamless online experience, especially if you work from home, stream high-definition content, or play online games.

AT&T Reliability and Network Performance

AT&T is known for its reliable network, particularly with their fiber-optic plans. Fiber-optic technology allows for a more stable connection, reduced latency, and better resistance to environmental factors. AT&T’s DSL-based plans, while generally reliable, may experience more fluctuations in speed and performance compared to their fiber plans.

Cox Reliability and Network Performance

Cox’s network is also known for its reliability, although it may not be as consistent as fiber-optic connections. Cox primarily uses cable technology, which can be susceptible to slowdowns during peak usage times due to network congestion. However, many customers still report satisfaction with Cox’s overall network performance.

Ease of Installation and Setup

The installation and setup process for your internet service can impact your initial experience with a provider. Both AT&T and Cox offer self-installation and professional installation options, depending on your preference and technical expertise.

AT&T Installation and Setup

AT&T provides a self-installation option for customers who feel comfortable setting up their internet service. This option includes step-by-step instructions and support from AT&T’s customer service if needed. For those who prefer a professional installation, AT&T offers this service for a one-time fee.

Cox Installation and Setup

Cox also offers a self-installation option, with a self-installation kit that includes all the necessary equipment and instructions. If you’d rather have a professional handle the installation, Cox provides this service for a one-time fee.

When choosing between AT&T and Cox, consider your comfort level with technology and the potential installation fees for each provider.

Mobile Apps and Account Management

Being able to manage your account, monitor usage, and access customer support through a mobile app can be a convenient feature for many customers.

AT&T Mobile App and Account Management

AT&T offers the myAT&T app, which allows customers to manage their account, view and pay bills, monitor data usage, and access customer support. The app is available for both iOS and Android devices.

Cox Mobile App and Account Management

Cox provides the Cox Connect app, which enables customers to manage their account, pay bills, monitor data usage, and access customer support. The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

Both AT&T and Cox offer mobile apps that make account management and customer support easily accessible, so consider this feature when comparing the two providers.

Environmental Impact and Sustainability

As the world becomes more conscious of environmental issues, it’s essential to consider the sustainability efforts of the companies you choose to support. Both AT&T and Cox have made strides in reducing their environmental impact and promoting sustainability.

AT&T Environmental Initiatives

AT&T is committed to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions, utilizing renewable energy, and implementing energy-efficient technologies across their operations. The company has set ambitious goals to achieve carbon neutrality by 2035.

Cox Environmental Initiatives

Cox is also dedicated to sustainability and has implemented various eco-friendly initiatives, including energy conservation, waste reduction, and water conservation. The company has a goal to achieve zero waste to landfill by 2024 and carbon and water neutrality by 2044.

When selecting an internet service provider, consider the environmental initiatives and commitments of both AT&T and Cox.

Additional Services and Features

When comparing AT&T and Cox, it’s important to consider the additional services and features each provider offers. These added benefits can enhance your overall experience and provide greater value for your money.

AT&T Smart Home Integration

AT&T offers a range of smart home solutions, such as home security and automation services, through their AT&T Digital Life platform. This service allows you to monitor and control your home security system, lighting, and appliances directly from your smartphone, providing an added layer of convenience and peace of mind.

Cox Smart Home Integration

Cox also offers smart home solutions through their Cox Homelife platform. This service provides home security, monitoring, and automation features that can be controlled from your smartphone or tablet. With Cox Homelife, you can enjoy a more connected and secure home.

AT&T Wi-Fi Hotspots

As an AT&T customer, you have access to their nationwide network of Wi-Fi hotspots, which allows you to connect to the internet on-the-go without using your mobile data. This can be a useful feature for those who frequently travel or work remotely.

Cox Wi-Fi Hotspots

Cox customers also have access to a network of Wi-Fi hotspots across their service areas. By connecting to these hotspots, you can save on mobile data usage while enjoying high-speed internet access when you’re away from home.

AT&T and Cox Security Features

Both AT&T and Cox provide security features to help protect your online activity and personal information. AT&T offers AT&T Internet Security, which includes features such as anti-virus protection, parental controls, and email protection. Cox provides Cox Security Suite Plus, which includes similar features like anti-virus protection, parental controls, and identity protection.

Additional Tips for Choosing an Internet Provider

To further assist you in selecting the right internet provider between AT&T and Cox, here are a few additional tips that can help guide your decision-making process:

Determine Your Internet Usage Needs

Before choosing an internet provider, it’s essential to evaluate your household’s internet usage habits. Consider the number of devices connected to the internet, the types of online activities you engage in, and the amount of data you typically use. This information can help you determine the speed and data cap requirements that will best suit your needs.

Ask for Recommendations from Friends and Neighbors

Word-of-mouth recommendations can be invaluable when choosing an internet provider. Talk to friends, family members, and neighbors who use AT&T or Cox and ask about their experiences. This can give you a better understanding of the service quality and customer support provided by each provider in your area.

Review the Terms and Conditions

Before signing up with an internet provider, take the time to carefully review the terms and conditions of the service agreement. This will help you understand any potential fees, such as early termination fees or equipment rental fees, as well as the provider’s policies on data usage and network management.

Test Drive the Provider’s Services

If you’re still unsure about which provider to choose, consider trying out their services for a short period. Some providers offer a trial period or a money-back guarantee, which allows you to test their internet service without any long-term commitment. This can help you determine if a particular provider is the right fit for your needs.

Keep an Eye Out for New Technologies and Upgrades

Both AT&T and Cox continually invest in upgrading their networks and introducing new technologies to improve their services. Stay informed about any upcoming upgrades or technology rollouts in your area, as these developments may impact the quality of service and pricing options available from each provider.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the decision between AT&T and Cox comes down to your specific needs, preferences, and location. Both providers offer various plans, speeds, and pricing options to cater to different internet usage requirements. When comparing the two, consider factors such as availability, reliability, network performance, additional features, and customer satisfaction. By thoroughly evaluating all aspects of each provider, you can make an informed decision that best meets your internet needs.

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