Verizon home internet service: All you need to know – CNET

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Verizon Fios fiber internet service is available in the Northeast, but you’ll find other Verizon internet plans, including DSL, LTE and 5G, in other parts of the country, too.


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Verizon Communications was formed in 2000 after the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE, and it’s arguably best known for its wireless business. But its fiber-optic internet service, Fios, which launched in 2004, has risen to the top of many internet service provider comparisons. Available in eight states and the District of Columbia, Fios boasts on its site about its eight-year standing at the top of the J.D. Power customer satisfaction charts. 

All bragging aside, what does Verizon’s internet service offer? Let’s dive into what plans and prices are available, and where in the country potential customers might be able to sign up for coverage.

Read moreThe best internet providers for 2021: Cable vs. DSL vs. satellite and more

Check your ZIP to find out if Verizon Internet is available in your area

What plans can you get with Verizon internet service?

  • Verizon Fios, which is 100% fiber-optic, offers three different plans
  • Verizon High Speed Internet, a DSL service, provides options for those outside the Fios network in the Northeast
  • Verizon LTE Home Internet is available in select markets in 48 states
  • Verizon 5G Home Internet is now available in 28 markets across the US
  • No contracts required for any Verizon plans — and no data caps, either

Verizon Fios plans and pricing

Plan Lowest monthly starting price* Max download speeds Max upload speeds Term agreement
Fios 200 $40 200Mbps 200Mbps None required
Fios 400 $60 400Mbps 400Mbps None required
Fios Gigabit Connection $80 940Mbps 880Mbps None required

*Price per month plus taxes. Additional fees and terms may apply. Pricing and promotional deals vary by location and availability. All prices, correct as of April 1, are subject to change. May or may not be available based on service address.


Verizon’s Fios service is the easiest to understand. There are three different tiers — 200, 400 and Gigabit — with the only exception being the New York market, whose three offerings are 300, 500 and Gigabit. 

Because Fios is a fiber-optic network, it delivers near symmetrical download and upload speeds, meaning you’re going to get close to the same upload speeds as your download numbers. If you’re more accustomed to asymmetrical cable internet (where the upload speeds on a 200 megabit per second plan might only go as high as 10Mbps), you know how dramatic a difference that can make. This is particularly important at a time when many more people are working and schooling from home, and those upload speeds (which are crucial for videoconferencing and transferring large files) become more and more important.

Verizon High Speed Internet

Not all addresses within Verizon’s availability map can get fiber service. In fact, according to a December 2019 report from the Federal Communications Commission, just over 64% of its potential customer base is eligible. That same report shows that 87% within Verizon’s footprint qualify for its High Speed Internet, which is a digital subscriber line service. DSL uses traditional copper telephone lines to deliver the internet to your home, but unlike the older dial-up technology, it uses dedicated, higher frequency bands than phone lines, so you can use both at the same time. 

Even so, DSL does not deliver anywhere near the speeds of the Fios plans — and the Verizon DSL service also uses asymmetric technology, which emphasizes download over upload speeds. As such, expect Verizon DSL internet plans to range from 1-15Mbps, based on how close your home is to its closest office, for $40 a month. While Verizon calls this High Speed Internet, it’s important to note that those speeds do not meet the FCC’s qualifications for broadband speed of at least 25Mbps download and 3Mbps upload (which we think is more like the bare minimum for most people).

Are there other internet plans available through Verizon?

Beyond the services available in its Northeast market, Verizon is also carving out other options for customers across the country. In March, Verizon shared with CNET its goal that within the next year its 5G home internet service will be available to 100 million people. The company also aims to expand its fixed wireless internet services to 15 million homes by the close of 2021.

Verizon LTE Home Internet

Verizon’s LTE Home Internet uses the Verizon 4G LTE cellular network to connect to the internet in areas where no other Verizon broadband options — Fios, DSL or 5G Home Internet — are available. Currently, per Verizon, that’s 189 markets in 48 different states.

As for what to expect with LTE Home Internet, customers will see a max of 25-50Mbps download speeds, an average of 5-12Mbps download and 2-5Mbps upload, per the Verizon LTE FAQs.

Pricing for Verizon LTE Home Internet is $60 a month, or $40 a month if you have a qualifying, active Verizon wireless plan.

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Verizon is actively expanding 5G Home Internet access to new markets in 2021.


Screenshot by Eli Blumenthal/CNET

Verizon 5G Home Internet

At time of writing, Verizon’s 5G internet service, which uses ultrawideband 5G technology, is available in 28 markets across the country. It features max download speeds of up to 1 gigabit, with an average speed around 300Mbps. Upload speeds, however, are not symmetrical, typically topping out around 50Mbps, depending on one’s location.

Pricing for Verizon 5G Home Internet is $70 a month, or $50 a month for Verizon wireless customers.

What type of internet connection does Verizon offer?

As mentioned above, Verizon Fios plans use fiber-optic connections to deliver the internet into customers’ homes. This is a reliable technology that can support similar download and upload speeds. Verizon also offers DSL connections for potential customers in Verizon areas where Fios isn’t available, but these will feature much slower speeds.

In select (and growing) areas of the country, Verizon is expanding its footprint by using its wireless network to provide LTE and 5G home internet options. These involve installing a type of router and/or receiver at your home. The amount of equipment will depend on the signal strength at your location.

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Though its DSL and LTE internet services are available in multiple regions throughout the country, and 5G Home internet is expanding to dozens of cities, Verizon Fios fiber internet is only available in the Northeast.


FCC/Mapbox

Where can you get Verizon internet service?

Availability for Verizon Fios is solely in eight northeastern states — Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Virginia — and Washington, DC. Within those areas, customers can use the Verizon availability checker to see if Fios is available at their address.

Verizon is also aiming to expand the availability of its 5G Home Internet service across the country. As of the end of March, it is offered in the following 28 markets: Arlington, Texas; Anaheim, California; Atlanta; Charlotte, North Carolina; Chicago; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Dallas; Denver; Detroit; Hartford, Connecticut; Houston; Indianapolis; Kansas City, Missouri; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Louisville, Kentucky; Miami; Minneapolis and St. Paul; Omaha, Nebraska; Phoenix; Sacramento, California; Salt Lake City; San Diego; San Francisco; San Jose, California; and St. Louis.

Are there other aspects of Verizon Internet you should know?

Just as your mom taught you to always look under the hood, it’s never a bad idea to dig a bit to get a better idea of what it is you’re buying before you commit to any potential internet service.

Additional monthly fees

Compared to most ISPs, Verizon’s quoted monthly fees are fairly straightforward. For example, many providers quote a promo rate that’s contingent on you signing a term agreement, and after the first year, your rate goes up. Verizon, on the other hand, requires no annual contract, so you don’t have to worry about your rate converting to a higher amount after your promo period, nor do you need to fear early termination fees.

That said, depending on the plan you choose, you’ll be charged a monthly equipment fee. There’s a $15-a-month router charge for Fios plans, but that is waived when you sign up for the Fios Gigabit service. If you don’t have that top-tier Fios plan, you could also avoid that monthly charge by buying the Fios Router outright for $300 or using your own router. Just make sure it’s compatible with your plan and speed.

DSL customers will find that the $40 a month fee does not accurately represent their monthly costs, as DSL customers are required to get a home phone plan, which could add another $30-$40 a month. In addition, there’s a one-time $30 charge for buying a router, which you can avoid if you have your own compatible router.

One-time installation fee

Again, your setup charge will depend on the type of Verizon plan you select. If you choose Fios, your setup charge will be $99, which is waived if you order online; the activation fee for DSL is $30, and is also waived if you order online.

No Verizon data caps

Unlike Cox, HughesNet, Xfinity and some other internet providers, Verizon does not place a data cap on customers. Therefore, you won’t need to worry about overage fees or the slowing of your data once you hit a certain threshold. 

Discovery PlusDiscovery Plus

New Verizon Fios subscribers can score a free subscription to Discovery Plus or PlayStation Plus.


Discovery Plus

Does Verizon offer any special deals?

Verizon can lean into the fact that you’re not required to sign a term agreement, which means no early termination fees or getting stuck with a service you’ve either outgrown or need to downsize. But there are also a host of offers to help sweeten the deal for potential customers.

Through May 12, 2021, if you sign up for Fios service, you can choose either PlayStation Plus or Discovery Plus for free, from three months to six months depending on which plan tier you choose. With the Gigabit Connection, you get one year of Discovery Plus and your choice of either one year of PlayStation Plus or a $100 Verizon gift card. 

Additionally, with the Gigabit plan you get a free Stream TV device as well as your router rental included.

With all Fios plans there’s also the opportunity to save an additional $20-$30 a month if you combine your internet signup with enrollment in Verizon Unlimited Wireless.

Lastly, Verizon also offers a program called Fios Forward, which makes the same three Fios plans available to households who qualify for financial assistance (for example, those who are enrolled in the federal Lifeline program). Through this program customers might be able to save $20 a month on Fios plans.

How does Verizon Fios fare on customer service?

Over nearly the last decade, Verizon has consistently led the pack in customer service metrics. When you look at its 2020 American Customer Satisfaction Index numbers, it was five points higher than nearest competitor AT&T with a score of 73 points out of 100. It was its fifth year in a row at the top spot in ACSI’s ISP benchmarks.

Its dominance at the top of the charts is even more pronounced when you turn to the J.D. Power US Residential Internet Service Provider Satisfaction Study. For 2020, Verizon was at the top in overall customer satisfaction for the East region, scoring 769 points on a 1,000-point scale. That put it well above the region’s average of 727 and earned a tie for the highest score across the country (with AT&T, which also scored 769 in the South region). In fact, Verizon has nabbed the top spot in the East region of J.D. Power’s study for eight years running.

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Angela Lang/CNET

Verizon internet FAQs

What is Fios?

Fios refers to Verizon’s fiber-optic internet service, which features three different speed tiers — 200, 400 and Gigabit Connection. One of the appeals of this service is similar upload speed as your download speed. Verizon also offers other options for home internet service — DSL, LTE, 5G — but none of these are considered Fios.

Can I get Verizon Fios in my area?

The Verizon Fios service is only available in the Northeast. If you want to determine if Fios is available at your address, you can check the Verizon availability checker

If you want to explore its other internet options you can call 800-225-5499, though Verizon advises that the quickest option is to use its Chat now feature on the Verizon contact page

Is Verizon the best internet provider available?

Verizon can turn to its high customer service ratings and boast about its consistency at the top of those charts. The availability of Verizon home internet service, however, is mostly limited to those in the Northeast. There’s still a large portion of people across the country to whom Verizon is unavailable. Verizon’s 5G home internet expansion aims to bridge that gap, but that may take some significant time.

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