- Charter Spectrum and AT&T Internet offer the widest coverage areas in Raleigh.
- Google Fiber is a recent addition to the Raleigh Internet market, offering gigabit fiber service to select buildings and neighborhoods.
- Our top download speed recorded in Raleigh is 128.76 Mbps.
Best Residential Internet Providers
Home Internet is more important than ever. We picked these providers as the best bang for your buck while still meeting the bandwidth and latency needs of the average household.
Charter Spectrum - Top Pick
- Pricing: $4499 - $13997
- Max Down: 940 Mbps
- Max Up: 35 Mbps
Charter Spectrum’s hybrid fiber-coaxial cable network earns them top marks for speed and value. Their TV options have everything from sports packages to kids entertainment, and deliver it at a decent price point. Their unlimited data policies are cord-cutter friendly as well.
AT&T Internet - Runner Up
- Pricing: $5000 - $9000
- Max Down: 100 Mbps
- Max Up: 20 Mbps
AT&T offers some of the better budget plans within city limits, using a FTTN (Fiber to the Node) DSL network to delivers speeds that are more than capable of modern use cases like Skype, Netflix, Hulu, Twitch, and etc. Their TV packages also offer a solid value for sports fans and premium channel viewers.
Residential Internet Providers Available in Raleigh
In addition to the primary providers discussed above, some areas of Raleigh also have service from DSL alternatives like Windstream and Frontier.
|$4499+|| 100% |
|$4999+|| 100% |
|$5000+|| 100% |
|$5000+|| 90% |
|$2600+|| 10% |
|$5000+|| 9% |
|$4500+|| 6% |
|$2799+|| 3% |
Best Business Internet Providers
While residential options outside fiber areas can be limited, business broadband is surprisingly competitive for a medium-sized city like Raleigh. We landed on this company for offering the best value plans with wide availability throughout the area.
Charter Spectrum - Business Pick
- Max Down: 940 Mbps
- Max Up: 35 Mbps
Charter Business services are an excellent pick and feature all the baseline features including cloud backup and static IPs. They’re a friendly option for small businesses and medium-sized businesses that need advanced features at a reasonable price point.
Business Internet Providers Available in Raleigh
VoIP, enhanced security, dedicated IP and point-to-point setups are all available thanks to Raleigh’s wide variety of business broadband providers. If our top pick doesn’t quite suit your needs or location, here’s a full list of current business options registered with the FCC as serving Raleigh zip codes.
|$5999+|| 100% |
|N/A|| 99% |
|N/A|| 99% |
|$5000+|| 87% |
|N/A|| 14% |
|$7000+|| 14% |
|$1999+|| 5% |
|N/A|| 3% |
|N/A|| 5% |
|N/A|| 2% |
Map of Broadband Internet Competition in Raleigh
Raleigh’s Internet options are expected to continue improving at a steady clip thanks to new competition from fiber upstart Google Fiber.
Provider Competition Map
Raleigh Internet Speed Overview
The fastest Internet speed recorded in Raleigh is 128.76 Mbps, as compared to the average Internet speed in the area which is 47.78 Mbps.
|Average Speed||90th Percentile Speed|
|47.78 Mbps||128.76 Mbps|
Average Residential download speeds within Raleigh
Top Factors to Consider When Shopping for Internet Service in Raleigh
Spectrum and Google Fiber both do a good job of removing the hidden fees and data caps other providers have been using in nearby metro areas. However, the picture isn’t perfect. Here are a couple quick shopping tips to keep in mind.
Limited-Time Promotional Pricing
Internet bundles with long contracts often offer the best monthly pricing. However, many customers sign up for promotions or signup promos without understanding that the price will eventually return to the “actual price” of service.
When you’re comparing what Raleigh has to offer in terms of home Internet, we recommend that you average the promo price and final price to see what the actual overall cost is going to be for you in the long run.
Cable vs DSL
While Google Fiber is all the rage since being introduced in some Raleigh neighborhoods, many residents are still stuck choosing between cable and DSL. What’s the difference? In essence, cable Internet travels over TV infrastructure while DSL travels over traditional phone line infrastructure. Cable generally outperforms DSL, but usually, comes at a higher monthly price.
In Raleigh, we usually recommend cable because the fiber-coaxial networks installed in the area deliver great speed and ping, and they do it free of data caps under Spectrum.
Raleigh has won awards for the local government’s focus on improving broadband options and increasing access to digital services. This tech-friendly environment is largely to thank for Google’s choice of Raleigh as one of the first test areas for fiber service.
Broadband Roadblocks in Raleigh
Raleigh is unlikely to install any form of public “municipal” broadband. North Carolina has strict laws compared to other states, making it difficult for communities to leverage public fiber even if they want to. For more information on NC state broadband laws, see this guide to municipal broadband roadblocks.
References and Footnotes
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.