Earthlink Internet Review: Plans, prices, and customer satisfaction

Earthlink offers a wide variety of internet options at higher prices, but its customer service is what really shines.
  • pro
    Price: $49.95–$189.95/mo.
  • pro
    Download speed: 10–5,000 Mbps
  • pro
    Internet type: Fiber, fixed wireless, and satellite
  • pro
    Special Features: Excellent customer service
  • pro
    Availability: High

Mikayla Rivera
Jan 31, 2024
Icon Time To Read8 min read

Is EarthLink a good service?

You can get three different types of Earthlink internet services: fiber internet, fixed wireless home internet, and satellite internet. That’s good news considering Earthlink consistently ranks high in customer service polls for all its internet service plans.

On the downside, Earthlink prices tend to be higher, and because Earthlink rents its infrastructure from other internet providers, your connection reliability can be out of its hands. It’ll run as a dedicated middle man to get you back online if something goes wrong, but it’s good to know upfront.

Overall, Earthlink is a good internet service provider, especially if you’re tired of dealing with apathetic customer service agents. You just have to be willing to pay for smooth sailing.

We recommend checking below to see if you have Earthlink available in your area.

Pros for Earthlink
pro Satellite, wireless, and fiber internet
pro Excellent customer service
pro Fast internet infrastructure
Cons for Earthlink
con Low availability for Earthlink fiber
con Rented infrastructure
con High prices

Earthlink internet services

You can get Earthlink WiFi via fiber internet, fixed wireless home internet, and satellite internet.

Earthlink can offer all these different internet types by renting its infrastructure from other internet companies, the same way that MVNOs rent their networks from major cellular providers.

Because it rents the infrastructure of other internet service providers, Earthlink doesn’t always have immediate control over the infrastructure if something goes wrong. But you can also get all the power and speed of providers like AT&T and Viasat without dealing with their notoriously bad customer service. Earthlink is at your beck and call.

But which Earthlink internet service is right for you? That likely depends on where you live and what you need, so let’s check them out in detail.

Check Availability

Zip Code

filled red circle with the letter i cut out of the middle filled green circle with a check mark cut out in the middle

Earthlink satellite internet

Earthlink satellite service uses Viasat internet’s geosynchronous satellites—which is to say you’re getting one of the best satellite internet providers in the world right now, with solid speeds and reliability, plus Earthlink’s superior customer service.

Best Earthlink satellite internet plans

Price range
Earthlink satellite plans$49.99–$59.99/mo.10–100 Mbps

Data as of 8/4/22. Prices and availability may vary and are subject to change.

Overall, Earthlink is a solid satellite internet service, but it comes with all the same cons of satellite internet generally: higher latency, slower speeds, and data restrictions. Fortunately, Earthlink plans don’t have hard data caps, but your service will still slow after you exceed your plan’s data allotment.

Satellite internet service is best if you live in rural or out-of-the-way areas that don’t have fixed wireless internet plans as an option (hint: no cell service or bad cell service in your area should tell you fixed wireless home internet won’t work well for you).

If that’s you, but you’re not sure Earthlink’s prices work for your needs, check out our Best Satellite Internet Services for more options.

Earthlink wireless home internet

Play Video

Unlike Earthlink fiber internet, Earthlink wireless home internet plans all give you 100 Mbps. The price differences between plans are really dictated by what data limit you’re setting.

Best Earthlink 4G LTE home internet plans

LTE Home 50 GB
Up to 100 Mbps
LTE Home 75 GB
Up to 100 Mbps
LTE Home 100 GB
Up to 100 Mbps
LTE Home 150 GB
Up to 100 Mbps

4G LTE providers offer a great rural internet option for people who have cell coverage in their area. If you can get fixed wireless, pick it over satellite internet. It’s a bit more reliable, faster, and has lower latency.

You can check if fixed wireless internet is available near you by using our zip check below.

Check if Earthlink wireless home internet plans are available in your area.

Earthlink fiber internet

If it’s available in your area, Earthlink fiber is by far your best Earthlink internet option. Grab these Earthlink internet plans and enjoy speeds of up to 5 gigs (5,000 Mbps) and matching upload speed.

Best Earthlink fiber internet plans

Fiber 100
100 Mbps
Fiber 300
300 Mbps
Fiber 1 Gig
1 Gig
Fiber 5 Gig
5 Gigs

*With a 12 month contract.

Honestly, any fiber plan from Earthlink should serve you well, though most people won’t need the sheer unbelievable power (and price) of the Fiber 5 Gig plan. That’s all thanks to the fiber optic cables Earthlink rents from AT&T. Because they’re made of glass instead of copper cable wires, they can deliver those sweet, sweet download speeds you see above.

Also, be aware that Earthlink charges install fees of up to $19.95. Router Fees for all service levels are set at $14.95.

Unfortunately, Earthlink fiber is available in only select areas, so you’re also way less likely to have access to these Earthlink internet plans, especially if you live outside major cities.

You can check if Earthlink fiber’s near you using our zip check below. If not, don’t worry—you may have one of Earthlink’s internet services above that is better suited for North America’s rural areas.

Check if Earthlink fiber is in your area using our zip search.

Earthlink DSL

At its peak, Earthlink was a major DSL provider, but it no longer advertises DSL internet plans or offers them to new customers. DSL internet (where it’s still available across North America) is often slower than satellite internet, carried on archaic copper lines, and no longer reliable.

DSL struggles to even carry broadband speeds, which is just 25 Mbps, according to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

All that said, it’s a good sign that Earthlink isn’t trying to peddle DSL to anyone anymore. Instead, it has made a comeback with satellite internet, 4G LTE home internet, and fiber internet—all of which are faster and far more reliable. So thumbs-up to Earthlink for moving with the times.

Earthlink deals and promotions

Earthlink doesn’t really do promotional pricing or deals—unfortunate, since Earthlink plan prices are a bit steeper to begin with. On the upside, you’ll never experience sudden price hikes with Earthlink, either. Stable pricing can be its own virtue.

Earthlink vs. the competition

Earthlink satellite vs. the competition

Viasat, Hughesnet, and Starlink are Earthlink’s main competitors. But you might remember that Earthlink actually uses Viasat’s service, so we’ll take that off the board for a moment (especially since prices are equitable, and Earthlink’s customer service is superior).

Earthlink satellite internet has better speeds than Hughesnet but not better data caps than Starlink. Earthlink plans therefore rank about even with Viasat Internet, which we’d put as the second-best satellite internet provider—unless Starlink isn’t available in your area yet, in which case it’s the best overall.

Check out our review for more on other satellite internet services.

Earthlink fixed wireless vs. the competition

Internet service
Data allotment
$99.99/mo.Up to 150 MbpsUnlimited
$120.00—$500.00/mo.20–220 MbpsUnlimited

In the fixed wireless home internet industry, Earthlink is a David against some major Goliaths of the industry.

Earthlink partnered with UltraMobile to deliver its fixed wireless home internet service. UltraMobile, meanwhile, uses AT&T’s network. Its solid and speedy reputation should give you some confidence in Earthlink’s rented infrastructure, but even AT&T’s cell network can’t quite rival the likes of T-Mobile and Verizon.

T-Mobile and Verizon would beat out Earthlink in a battle to rule over all fixed wireless home internet services. But Earthlink’s customer service would still give these giants an impressive fight, and if we’re comparing Earthlink to one of its other competitors like Ladybug Wireless, it’d definitely be on a more even footing.

So what’s the takeaway? If you have T-Mobile or Verizon LTE home wireless internet services available near you, they could be a better choice than Earthlink. But if you’re picking between Earthlink and another service, feel safe in this fixed wireless fighter’s care.

Learn more about fixed wireless

Check out our Best 4G LTE Home Internet Providers guide for a more in-depth look into these providers.

Earthlink fiber vs. the competition

If you’re in the lucky position to get Earthlink fiber internet, first of all, congratulations. Second of all, Earthlink fiber is pretty comparable to other fiber services in terms of reliability, download and upload speeds, and quality—it just needs to be actually available in your area.

Earthlink fiber is comparable to other fiber networks in how limited its coverage is, too.

Earthlink availability

Because Earthlink offers satellite internet, it’s available almost anywhere in North America. If you can’t get a cell signal where you live, this is your best option.

Meanwhile, Earthlink fixed wireless home internet service isn’t nearly as all-encompassing as that, but it can still cover quite a spread of rural areas, as long as they’re in AT&T’s cell coverage zones.

And like we’ve said before, Earthlink fiber internet is the rarest service it offers, mostly concentrated around big city areas. If you can catch this unicorn, by all means, do so.

Earthlink installation and equipment

Earthlink installation

Earthlink offers professional installation—for a fee. $80 to be exact, and while it’s pretty typical for internet providers to charge for something like this, we think it’s quite strange of Earthlink since it’s not the one actually installing anything.

See, when you make an order, Earthlink informs the service it rents infrastructure from—whether that be AT&T or Viasat—and it sends a team to install it. So that’s just $80 you’re never getting back. But at least if something goes awry with installation, you can fume at Earthlink, and it’ll champion you to the service that got it wrong.

That’s a silver lining that’s probably not worth $80, but hey—you might enjoy having someone else there to handle your problems, at least.

Earthlink equipment

Earthlink internet equipment, much like its installation, will depend on what internet service you’ve selected and what company provides it. Do you want Earthlink satellite WiFi? Viasat’s satellite dish will show up at your door with a team to install it. The same follows for AT&T and Earthlink fixed wireless and Earthlink fiber.

Earthlink data caps

Earthlink’s data caps depend on the kind of internet service you’re looking to get from the company.

Earthlink satellite internet data cap

Satellite WiFi networks have more restrictions on bandwidth and latency than other internet types, so you won’t be surprised to hear that Earthlink’s satellite service comes with stricter data caps than its other services.

Earthlink’s satellite data caps range from 15–300 GB, and you can expect to pay more the higher the data cap you want. We’d say it’s usually worth it to get the highest data cap you can, and preferably, get unlimited data where possible.

Fortunately, Earthlink’s satellite internet service does offer unlimited data plans—but there’s a catch. You’ll still have a data cap, but you won’t lose your service after exceeding it. Instead, your speeds will slow and will be deprioritized compared to users who haven’t exceeded their data allotment.

None of that is unusual for satellite internet providers, so you won’t need to worry about getting ripped off here. But still, it does still pale in comparison to Starlink’s satellite internet plans with truly unlimited data. Now that’s a rural internet dream.

Earthlink wireless home internet data cap

Like most wireless home internet services, Earthlink’s plans have pretty tight data caps ranging from 50 to 150 GB. Wireless home internet is more like satellite internet in that way since your internet connection comes through heavily trafficked cell towers.

If you’re planning on streaming TV with your Earthlink WiFi and have more than two people in your household, you’ll probably want at least 75 GB of data, but we’d recommend the 150 GB plan for most people.

Earthlink fiber data cap

Earthlink fiber has no data caps, as you might expect from the high caliber of a fiber service. Because fiber optic cables don’t have the same restrictions as 4G LTE home internet or satellite internet, you can use those up-to-5-gig speeds to the fullest.

EarthLink Guardian

EarthLink Guardian is the company’s proprietary parental control service used to protect your children’s privacy and keep them safe online from cyberbullies, creeps, and all the other internet baddies. It does this by constantly monitoring emails and the 30 most popular social media apps.

In typical EarthLink fashion, EarthLink Guardian is powered by another service—Bark. That’s a good thing; Bark is one of the most robust parental control tools available. EarthLink Guardian also costs only $9.95 a month, whereas the comparable Bark Premium plan costs $14.00 a month.

So you can save some money on an award-winning parental monitoring service when you get EarthLink Guardian alongside your Earthlink internet service. Not bad.

Is EarthLink a good deal?

Overall, Earthlink plans have slightly higher prices than other services but excellent customer service. We’d say that’s a good deal if you care about your blood pressure—especially if you can get Earthlink fiber internet service, which has excellent speeds and reliability.

If you can’t get Earthlink fiber, EarthLink mobile internet is still a fast option that’ll take good care of you if you live somewhere with cell tower service. Earthlink’s even got you covered if you’re in an internet desert since its satellite service comes through Viasat, the second-fastest satellite internet service available.

We think you’re in good hands with Earthlink. Just make sure you get the right internet service type for you.

Check Availability

Zip Code

filled red circle with the letter i cut out of the middle filled green circle with a check mark cut out in the middle

Related Resources

Parent working at home
Best 4G LTE Home Internet Providers
With limited broadband options, 4G home internet may be a good option in your search for internet service. Compare plans, prices, and more.
persons using computer at home
What Is Latency?
What is latency and how does it affect your internet speed? Learn about latency, ping, jitter, and hose these all can impact your internet.
Woman standing in field using an internet-connected device
Mobile Hotspot vs. Satellite Internet
Deciding between satellite Internet and a mobile wireless hotspot? See what the differences are and what connection is better for your needs.


Our editorial team bases our analyses on research, results from our speed test tool, and proprietary internet provider data on speeds and pricing. We dig deep to get hard-to-find information on internet plans, fees, and upcoming brand developments. We make this information easy for you to find in one place via our in-depth reviews, and we use our satellite internet industry expertise to analyze the options to help you make the most informed decision for your household.

To learn more about our process, check out our Methodology page.

EarthLink FAQs

Is EarthLink fast?

Earthlink fiber internet is extremely fast—up to 5,000 Mbps. But Earthlink wireless home internet and Earthlink satellite internet speeds tap out at around 100 Mbps.

That’s minuscule compared to 5,000 Mbps, but keep in mind that 100 Mbps still qualifies as high-speed internet (the FCC mandates 25 Mbps or above for broadband internet), and it should satisfy most three-person households.

Is EarthLink owned by AT&T?

EarthLink isn’t owned by AT&T, but it does rent its fiber internet infrastructure from AT&T.

Does anyone still use EarthLink?

Earthlink was one of the dominant internet providers about two decades ago before it fell into some obscurity. But in the last three years, it’s resurged with new internet plans, internet types, and internet speeds.

What is EarthLink HyperLink?

Earthlink HyperLink was an old fiber-and-DSL service Earthlink once provided. It’s no longer mentioned on the internet provider’s website and seems to have been retired.