Compare DSL internet providers in your area
DSL, or digital subscriber line, is a broadband service that offers high-speed internet to its users. Studies reveal "roughly three-quarters of American adults have broadband internet service at home,” according to Pew Research Center data. There are several different types of broadband service, including cable and fiber, but DSL ranks above both in terms of accessibility. DSL is considered "always on and faster than the traditional dial-up access." Unlike cable internet, DSL is more secure (than dial-up) and won’t slow down when your neighbors hop online (unlike cable). Fiber is faster than cable and DSL, but for the typical household, DSL is more than capable of handling typical daily household needs. This article will take a look at DSL availability, pros and cons, and compare the top DSL providers.
About DSL internet
A DSL modem uses traditional copper phone lines to connect you to the internet. But unlike a dial-up internet connection, it won’t hog the line. You can still make and receive calls.
How? This type of broadband internet service adds a filter to any equipment that shares your phone line. Think fax machine, alarm and your home phone. The majority of homes should already have the right equipment (a phone line) in place, but DSL isn’t always available on every phone line. There may be extra fees if you don’t have an in-service landline.
Your internet service company will typically supply the DSL modem and router. The modem allows the internet to enter your home, while your router plays the part of a director, sending that connection to the devices that need it.
Top DSL internet providers
If you’re wondering, “How’s the DSL in my area?”, it’s really more about individual priorities. Though there is no shortage of internet providers, not all DSL service providers offer the same speeds, features or availability. The DSL providers below make the list of top contenders due to their availability, high customer ratings and varied pricing packages. Prices will vary depending on your location, though. The next question is, “How do I find DSL providers near me?” Look for DSL providers by zip code and whittle your list based on your budget and DSL features.
The best DSL internet providers may cover a large area of the U.S., but DSL availability doesn’t extend everywhere. Pricing will vary depending on where you live and how rural your location. Use the ISP.com zip code finder tool to find the best DSL internet where you live.
Compare DSL internet providers
The best internet provider will be the company that matches your household’s internet needs with your budget and is available in your area. Suburban areas have a better chance at snagging faster internet than rural areas because they tend to be closer to the DSL service office that connects to the Internet.
To figure what works for you, consider the speed you need, whether you want to go with a contract or not, and if it’s beneficial to bundle with other services, like phone and TV. Skip the contracts with Frontier and CenturyLink no-contract DSL internet. These two companies also provide “price for life” contracts. You won’t experience sudden price hikes or hidden fees on your bill. You’ll pay the same price for your internet as the years go by — as long as you don’t switch plans. Verizon, AT&T Internet, and Consolidated Communications offer a range of packages at different price points and speeds, but with contracts (and the potential for raised rates at the end of a term).
When it comes to price hikes, that’s where Verizon internet customers cringe. Ditch the Verizon equipment and buy your own to save a couple of bucks on rental fees each month. If you opt for Frontier Internet, you may want to do the same, if only to escape the hardware woes mentioned by online reviewers.
But if you like to bundle together your internet with your other tech-friendly services, like TV and a phone, these companies measure up. However, when it comes to bundling options, AT&T Internet bundles win. What’s more, these bundles typically feature a new client bonus or other special offers, so you get more while spending less. On that note, CenturyLink offers the lowest prices, but online reviews point to recurring customer service issues. Every company listed above offers 24/7 internet support.
Top DSL internet providers
Pros and cons of DSL internet
- In suburban areas, DSL can be as fast as fiber or cable internet.
- DSL is available in a large portion of the U.S.
- You can choose between different connection speeds and pricing.
- You must buy or rent a modem from your internet provider, which may mean extra monthly fees.
- If you move, you must return your modem or face hefty costs (and some companies expect you to return the modem in person).
- Uploading files takes longer using DSL.
In your area
We're here to help! Call or visit ISP.com for help finding the best deals in your area, and use the zip code tool to find DSL internet near you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Find DSL providers by zip code. Use the ISP.com zip code finder tool to track down the best internet for your location.
DSL internet is a good solution for most households. Power content creators, especially anyone who does a lot of content uploading, will want to turn to fiber internet.
DSL is almost as fast as a cable internet connection and meets the needs of most residential internet users.
While DSL uses a phone line like dial-up internet, DSL doesn’t connect to the phone line like dial-up, so there’s no connectivity issues or busy signals. DSL is significantly faster than dial-up internet.
DSL internet uses a filter to separate the internet from calls, so it will never interfere with a home phone.