The company’s unlimited data policy is a highlight, making them a great choice for cord-cutters and techies. This policy currently holds true in all their network areas, including fiber, DSL, and cable connections.
The main issue we’ve seen with Frontier has been their mixed customer service record and higher than average pricing on premium “Vantage” TV services. Frontier Vantage TV makes the most sense overall for daily TV viewers and family homes that need a wide variety of sports, premium drama, or international channels.
Frontier Internet Service Availability
California, Texas, and Florida have the lion’s share of Frontier’s fiber “Fios” network coverage. These are the network areas Frontier acquired from Verizon in 2016, and while they offer Fiber in other markets these are the main “Fios” branded service states.
Frontier offers their fastest gigabit service in New Haven, Connecticut, Beaverton, Oregon, and Durham, NC.
Frontier Communications Coverage & Availability Map
Frontier Internet Speed and Performance
Speed and consistency of service is where Frontier really shines compared to other Internet and TV providers.
According to FCC reports as of 2015, 70% of Frontier connections tested were within 95% of the maximum advertised speed, while 100% of speeds were somewhere between 50% of the advertised maximum speed or higher.  This is significantly better performance overall than is generally expected from mixed cable/DSL/fiber Internet providers.
For more updated speed reports we’ve collected tens of thousands of real-world speed test results from Frontier customers across the US to show how overall network speeds have performed in 2017:
Frontier Communications Download Speeds Over Time
|City||Frontier Communications Average Speed||Frontier Communications Top 10% Speeds|
|Bloomington, Illinois||7.2 Mbps||17 Mbps|
|Bridgeport, Connecticut||8.2 Mbps||15 Mbps|
|Charleston, West Virginia||6.6 Mbps||15 Mbps|
|College Station, Texas||12 Mbps||31 Mbps|
|Durham, North Carolina||18 Mbps||26 Mbps|
|Elk Grove, California||14 Mbps||26 Mbps|
|Elkhart, Indiana||9.1 Mbps||20 Mbps|
|Fort Wayne, Indiana||34 Mbps||74 Mbps|
|Hartford, Connecticut||6.5 Mbps||16 Mbps|
|Lafayette, Indiana||77 Mbps||203 Mbps|
|Moreno Valley, California||3.0 Mbps||7.2 Mbps|
|Morgantown, West Virginia||7.1 Mbps||17 Mbps|
|Muskegon, Michigan||5.3 Mbps||12 Mbps|
|New Haven, Connecticut||5.5 Mbps||13 Mbps|
|Norwalk, Connecticut||5.2 Mbps||13 Mbps|
|Rochester, New York||11 Mbps||17 Mbps|
|Sacramento, California||9.1 Mbps||21 Mbps|
|Stamford, Connecticut||7.8 Mbps||15 Mbps|
|Terre Haute, Indiana||41 Mbps||98 Mbps|
|Waterbury, Connecticut||7.5 Mbps||15 Mbps|
Frontier DSL Real-World Speed Test
In addition to the statistics above, we also had someone on our team investigate a sample Frontier connection and run speed tests in person. Overall, they found the speed and performance to be surprisingly reliable, although they reported a less than friendly experience speaking with a Frontier representative on the phone. Here is a video screencast giving an overview of their experience of Frontier DSL compared to Comcast cable:
Frontier Internet Service Plans
In comparison to similar fiber offerings from Verizon and Google Fiber, the mid-tier plans in the 50–150 Mbps download/upload range are reasonably priced and significantly outperform their cable and DSL service. That said, their premium “gigabit” plans with speeds in the 1,000 Mbps range are pricier than average.
If you’re finding the price a little too much to stomach, you can always try negotiate with Frontier for a better deal. A civil and polite call with a sales agent can go a long way if done right.
While they may be worth it for power users, we generally recommend their mid-tier fiber plans even though the speeds may not look much better than cable or DSL. The secret sauce here is the enhanced “symmetrical” fiber upload speeds, which make the connection feel much faster than the old “asymmetrical” upload speeds you might have experienced on legacy cable or DSL plans.
|Deals||Price Monthly||Internet Speed||Phone|
|6.0 Mbps||$2799||6.0 Mbps DSL||(877) 773-4506|
|25 Mbps||$3499||25 Mbps DSL||(877) 773-4506|
|90 Mbps||$4499||90 Mbps DSL||(877) 773-4506|
|50 Mbps||$2999||50 Mbps Fiber||(877) 773-4506|
|100 Mbps||$3999||100 Mbps Fiber||(877) 773-4506|
|500 Mbps||$3999||500 Mbps Fiber||(877) 773-4506|
|940 Mbps||$7499||940 Mbps Fiber||(877) 773-4506|
If you're looking to compare plans, make sure to check out our detailed guide on the latest Frontier Communications deals and promotions.
What Are The Alternatives to Frontier Internet in My Area?
Common Questions About Frontier Fios Internet Service
Frontier Fios vs Verizon Fios: What’s the difference?The term “FiOS” comes from Verizon’s original fiber network. Frontier describes the name is an acronym for “Fiber Optic Service”. Frontier purchased extensive Verizon FiOS wireline networks in 2016 and retained the “FiOS” branding.
Frontier Fios vs Frontier DSL: What’s the difference?Frontier offers three main types of wired Internet connection: fiber, cable, and DSL. Fiber to the Home (FTTH) connections like Frontier Fios are currently the most desirable type of Internet. Fiber is delivered over fiber-optic cables that are designed specifically for digital data. DSL and cable are delivered over copper cables that are less ideal for digital data. That said, Frontier still offers unlimited data and streaming on all wired connection types.
Frontier TV Options: Vantage, Fios, and DISH
Frontier offers three distinct TV services:
Vantage TVVantage TV is a digital IPTV service that pairs with Frontier’s DSL Internet plans. It offers 560+ channels including digital HD, direct Netflix access, and a total-home DVR.
FiOS TVFiOS TV is the TV option Frontier offers for fiber Internet customers. It is effectively the same as Vantage TV, albeit with the addition of extra HD channels and the sort of snappy performance that only a true FTTH (Fiber to the Home) fiber connection can provide.
DISH satellite TVDISH pairs with either service as a bundle option for customers who prefer satellite TV. While it has fewer channels overall (190–330+), it’s a great budget option and has more than enough sports and premium programming to match Vantage’s rating for most households.
Frontier Extra Fees for Internet, TV, and Phone
- Early termination fee: Frontier’s Internet-only plans offer great rates with no long-term commitment. Their TV bundles aren’t so lenient, and the ETF (Early Termination Fee) can run as high as $400+.
- Broadband processing fee: Frontier charges a one-time fee of just under ten dollars when customers choose to disconnect existing services, such as phone or TV service.
- Installation fee: Frontier usually waives installation fees for new customers, but be sure to check verbally when you sign up on the phone that this freebie applies for your area.
Conclusion: Frontier is a Solid Option for Techies and Cord-Cutters
Overall, Frontier wins our recommendation for customers who value reliable, unlimited Internet access over all the bells and whistles you might have with a competing provider. Cord cutters and techies will get the most value out of the Internet-only plans, while the TV/phone bundles are a good premium option for busy family homes.
Most plans offer some form of 30-day money-back guarantee, so be sure to keep this in mind when signing up. In addition, Frontier generally allows service to be “paused” for customers who spend long spans of time away from home.
Frontier Communications at a Glance
|Price Range||$27.99 - $74.99/mo+|
|Connection Type(s)||DSL, Copper & Fiber|
|Customer Recommendation Rating on BroadbandNow.com||33.6%|
|ACSI Customer Service Rating||56/100|
|Phone Number||(877) 773-4506|
References and Footnotes
- https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2015/02/verizon-sells-three-state-territory-including-1-6-million-fios-users/ ↩
- https://www.fcc.gov/reports-research/reports/measuring-broadband-america/measuring-broadband-america-2015/ ↩
- https://internet.frontier.com/fios-network-acquisition/ ↩
- https://frontier.com/helpcenter/categories/account/manage-my-account/cancel-my-service-residential ↩
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.
Questions & Answers
1 ANSWERED QUESTIONS
From reading this article it seems as though Frontier Fios is a good option. However, Customer recommendation rating is only 34%. How come?
User-generated ratings like the ones from BroadbandNow, Yelp, etc tend to be very low because only angry customers leave reviews. That said, Frontier Fios isn’t known for good customer service. Even if it’s faster than competitors, they tend to provide hit-or-miss tech support. This probably explains why the rating on BroadbandNow would be low.