- Most Orlando residents have their pick of two providers: AT&T Internet and Bright House Networks (recently acquired by Charter Spectrum).
- AT&T Internet mostly offers DSL connections. Charter Spectrum uses cable TV network. Fiber is only available in certain parts of the city — usually at a premium price.
- Orlando also has some smaller ISPs with limited service areas, including fixed wireless options. Residents report that options are sometimes more limited in multi-unit buildings.
Best Orlando Residential Internet
TV watcher? Charter Spectrum is probably your best bet. If you’re more interested in DirecTV service, AT&T will bundle satellite service with your Internet for a significant savings.
Charter Spectrum is by far the best choice for cord cutters, thanks to the unlimited data plans. AT&T currently has data caps that can create extra fees if you go overboard on streaming Netflix and Hulu in a particular month.
Charter Spectrum - Top Pick
- Pricing: $4499 - $8998
- Max Down: 300 Mbps
- Max Up: 20 Mbps
Charter Spectrum has widespread availability within city limits, and offers some of the best speeds and performance within a reasonable budget. It’s a good choice for Internet-only customers, or “cord cutters,” since they don’t have data caps and won’t penalize you for leaving Netflix on all day and night. Their standalone TV service have plenty to offer customers who’d rather spring for HD, premium, and sports channels.
AT&T Internet - Runner Up
- Pricing: $4000 - $8000
- Max Down: 1,000 Mbps
- Max Up: 1,000 Mbps
AT&T Internet is one of the stronger contenders for home Internet service within the metro area, thanks to their reliable network performance and budget-friendly pricing. They also offer a variety of unique TV packages, including bundle deals with satellite TV provider DirecTV.
Residential Internet Providers Available in Orlando
Cable connections from Charter Spectrum vary in quality depending on how many subscribers share the coaxial cable node in your neighborhood or building. Particularly in large apartment buildings, run a speed test on a neighbor’s network if at all possible before installing. Peak usage times can bog down speeds significantly in some cases.
DSL service from AT&T Internet generally works best for addresses that happen to be nearby the provider’s local office. Unfortunately, it’s hard to determine how zippy and consistent your service will be before installation. Just keep in mind you can always cancel for free within 30 days if the plan you choose is problematic.
|$4999+|| 100% |
|$5000+|| 100% |
|$4499+|| 99% |
|$4000+|| 80% |
|$4499+|| 35% |
|$4500+|| 8% |
|N/A|| 8% |
|$5000+|| 5% |
|N/A|| 2% |
|N/A|| 1% |
Best Business Internet Providers
Dedicated IP, symmetrical upload/download speeds, and VoIP-worthy bandwidth are just a few of the considerations that go into business Internet. All things considered, here’s out top pick for business Internet in Orlando. We factored features and quality in before price — but that said, this provider offers a solid value for most business needs.
Charter Spectrum - Business Pick
- Max Down: 300 Mbps
- Max Up: 20 Mbps
Charter Business offers a host of business-focused features including fiber connectivity, cloud services, Ethernet services, and hosted voice. We give them top marks for industry-specific plans with affordable pricing.
Business Internet Providers Available in Orlando
Here’s a full rundown on business Internet options in Orlando. Some of these providers only serve select areas or specialize in niche business types, so be sure to talk to a rep on the phone before you draft up a shortlist.
|$6999+|| 97% |
|$9999+|| 100% |
|N/A|| 100% |
|$5999+|| 94% |
|$5000+|| 80% |
|$6995+|| 21% |
|$4200+|| 14% |
|N/A|| 19% |
|N/A|| 15% |
|$11000+|| 7% |
|N/A|| 6% |
|N/A|| 10% |
Map of Broadband Internet Competition in Orlando
Here’s a map showing the territories of Internet providers in Orlando and how those territories overlap. In coming years, fixed wireless and fiber growth are likely to create a bit more overlap between technologies as technology catches up with the market.
Provider Competition Map
Orlando Internet Speed Overview
Speeds vary pretty wildly throughout Orlando, anywhere from 1 Mbps to gigabits per second depending on where you are and what your budget is.
|Average Speed||90th Percentile Speed|
|27.32 Mbps||70.36 Mbps|
Average Residential download speeds within Orlando
Top Factors to Consider When Shopping for Internet Service in Orlando
The predominant options for Orlando Internet service are cable and DSL. Unless you’re on a tight budget or have needs outside the norm, cable and DSL from Spectrum and AT&T respectively is probably what you’re considering. There are two common problems to watch out for with these providers: modem rental fees and data caps.
Modem Rental Fees
Internet service usually comes with a modem, router, or combination “gateway” device as the default. However, this service costs you an extra $5–10/month depending on which provider in Orlando you spring for. Charter, for example, often advertises the modem as included in the cost of service. The router still costs you a monthly fee though, so you wind up paying more in the long run if you don’t own your own hardware.
Our recommendation: if you’re going to be in town for more than a year, go ahead and buy your own equipment. Every provider in the area should have information about which models and features are compatible with their service.
Data Caps and Overage Charges
As of this writing, Spectrum Internet wins bonus points for not leveraging a data cap on their customers. AT&T, on the other hand, offers a variety of data plans on budget offerings, meaning you’ll get overage charges if you use too much data on streaming or downloads.
Overall, data cap-free plans are a better pick for streamers, gamers, and households with more than one frequent Internet user.
Orlando is quickly emerging as one of Florida’s top tech hubs, and the Internet offerings available are beginning to reflect that status.
Orlando Government Approach to Broadband and Tech
Orlando has a mixed background when it comes to their tech focus, but that seems to be changing in recent years. As of 2017, the city was distributing a questionnaire aimed at improving digital services from the city to better serve residents. Like many cities in the US, Orlando seems interested in the idea of saving money through “smart city” initiatives.
Orlando doesn’t currently have any municipal broadband networks. However, talks are underway to build a fiber backbone network specifically for municipal buildings in Orlando’s Winter Park neighborhood. While opening up this network to residential use or public/private use arrangements isn’t on the table as of this writing, comments from the community and online broadband advocacy groups suggest that residents will be pushing for such a deal.
Orlando has a variety of subsidized “basic access” Internet plans available to residents through partnerships with local providers.
Broadband Roadblocks in Orlando
While Florida doesn’t outlaw municipal broadband networks outright, it does impose heavy taxes on them, which could prove to be a serious roadblock to potential fiber backbone projects like the one in Winter Park.
We’ve reached out to several government offices and local broadband groups for commentary on what the future of Internet access looks like in Orlando, Florida. This page will be updated with their perspectives and commentary as soon as possible.
References and Footnotes
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charter_Communications#2014.E2.80.932017:_Acquisition_of_Time_Warner_Cable_and_Bright_Housef ↩
- http://www.cityoforlando.net/blog/websurvey/ ↩
- http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/orange/os-winter-park-fiber-backbone-20170424-story.html ↩
- http://broadbandnow.com/report/municipal-broadband-roadblocks-by-state/#excessive-taxes ↩
Ana De Castro
Ana De Castro cut her teeth as a SAP consultant for Deloitte during the original tech boom, and now works in a communications role in the telecom industry. When she isn’t explaining technical concepts to confused consumers, she enjoys traveling with her husband and two rambunctious kids.
James Webb is a tech and gadgets expert with a focus on educational content development. He draws on his background in the startup world to make complicated technologies and topics easy to understand for normal folks.