The Only Comparison of Cincinnati Bell Vs Spectrum You Need
When shopping for internet or TV subscriptions, the choices can quickly get overwhelming. Often, several providers service the area you live in. Usually, each of these providers offers several tiers of internet and TV plans. That’s not to mention the different types of services available. There’s DSL, cable internet, and of course, blazing-fast fiber-optic connectivity. Then there is cable TV, IPTV, streaming TV, and good old satellite TV. You can see why making a choice gets a lot more difficult than it has to be. That is why this blog compares two popular TV and internet providers, Cincinnati Bell vs Spectrum, to help make the choice between the two easier for you.
An Overview of Cincinnati Bell vs Spectrum
Both providers offer TV, internet, and residential voice services in many states across the United States. Both of them are extremely popular options wherever they are available. They both have a large number of subscribers in their respective markets. On the face of it, the choice between Cincinnati Bell vs Spectrum should be a fairly easy one to make. But, as they say, the devil is in the details. This blog explores how both providers stack up against each other in the following areas:
- Overview of Internet Services
- Comparing Internet Speeds
- Coverage and Service Availability
- Prices, Plans, and Fees
- Contact Requirements and Data Limits
- The Takeaway
Let’s take a closer look at each of these areas below.
Overview of Internet Services
Here’s a look at both providers’ internet services side-by-side. Let’s examine Cincinnati Bell first. The provider ranks 8th in the United States in terms of fiber coverage area. In addition to a robust fiber infrastructure, the provider also delivers high-speed cable internet as well as DSL. With this provider, you can get a maximum speed of up to 1 Gbps, if you choose the highest-tier fiber internet plan. Of course, fiber internet usually has limited availability, and the case is no different from Cincinnati Bell. The provider also offers three distinct TV plans and also partners with DIRECTV to deliver entertainment options to its subscribers.
By comparison, Spectrum ranks as the 2nd largest cable internet provider in the United States. It has a massive coverage area, with services available in 44 states across the United States. It also has more than 25 million internet subscribers as well as more than 15 million pay TV customers. The provider primarily offers high-speed cable internet and cable TV, as well as home phone services. It does not offer high-speed fiber internet, but it’s top tier cable internet plans can often reach similar speeds. The provider has 3 distinct cable TV plans and often encourages subscribers to bundle their services by offering great deals and promotions. Spectrum is one of the largest cable internet and TV providers in the United States and remains one of the most commonly found service providers virtually everywhere in America.
Comparing Internet Speeds
When shopping for internet services the speeds you get are an important concern. In fact, many subscribers look at the advertised speeds before they look at the price. And with good reason, since speed and bandwidth will have a direct impact on your internet experience. Cincinnati Bell offers several speed options, starting from 50 Mbps on its DSL plans to around 1 Gbps on its premium fiber plans.
Spectrum does not offer many fiber internet plans, but that doesn’t mean it is any slower in terms of internet speed. The provider’s premium cable internet plan can reach maximum speeds of up to 940 Mbs. The provider also one GigaBit plan over a fiber internet connection that hits the 1,000 Mbps mark. Both providers are about evenly matched in terms of speed, with Spectrum having the advantage in affordable options in offering high-speed cable plans.
Coverage and Service Availability
Of course, you could want the best internet or cable plan in the US, but it won’t mean anything if the provider you want does not cover your area. Service availability is a huge concern for picky subscribers, who often have a limited number of providers covering their area. Cincinnati Bell offers its services in 31 states, with its services available to around 1.4 million households. This makes it the 8th largest provider in terms of fiber internet availability.
On the other hand, Spectrum has a much larger and broader coverage footprint. The provider is available to more than 102 million households across 44 states. This makes it by far a much larger and readily available service provider than the competition. Where Cincinnati Bell has limited fiber coverage, Spectrum covers a much larger segment of the market. This makes it the winner in this category.
Prices, Plans, and Fees
You could find the best internet or TV plan in the world, but if the price isn’t right, you most likely won’t choose it. The value you get for your hard-earned money is always a major concern when you subscribe to a service provider. Cincinnati Bell offers a lower starting price than Spectrum, specifically on its 50 Mbps DSL plan. However, the price-speed comparison would be off in this case, since the Spectrum does not offer DSL at all, as it is a very outdated form of internet connectivity.
The comparable plans would be Cincinnati Bell’s 500 Mbps connection vs Spectrum’s 400 Mbps plan. Spectrum offers a slightly higher price at $69.99 per month while Cincinnati Bell offers its plan at $59.98. On the face of it, you would automatically assume Cincinnati Bell is a more affordable option. But that’s before you factor in equipment costs and other fees, which we discuss in the next paragraph.
The installation costs and equipment fees can quickly pad up your bill to the point where it can turn into a nasty surprise if you aren’t expecting it. Cincinnati Bell allows you to opt for a self-installation or a professional installation. However, professional technicians will charge you an hourly rate for the installation. At the same time, the provider charges a monthly rental of $8.99 per month, which will factor in your monthly service bill.
Spectrum also offers a professional or self-installation option. For most cable plans, a professional installation will cost you just $49.99. The cost may be higher for installing a fiber internet service. Spectrum also charges you a rental for its equipment, such as your modem. However, this cost is built into the price of the plan, so you don’t have to pay extra. Spectrum also charges a one-time activation fee for Wi-Fi services of just $9.99. This makes it a competitively priced alternative to Cincinnati Bell’s internet services.
Contact Requirements and Data Limits
Data caps determine how much data comes with your plan. It affects your internet usage. They can cost you significantly in terms of overages if you exceed your limit. At the same time, contract requirements can also be a big concern. New subscribers are understandably wary of getting into a long-term relationship with a provider they don’t know. Luckily, in Cincinnati Bell vs Spectrum, this isn’t the case. Both providers offer unlimited data with their internet plans, so you can surf, stream, and download to your heart’s content. At the same time, neither provider requires you to enter into a long-term contract. That means you can opt-out of your subscription at any time.
If you don’t have time to absorb all of the above information in one reading, this is the final verdict to help you save time. Cincinnati Bell offers decent prices, has a larger selection of plans, and has no data caps or contracts. On the other hand, it has limited coverage, especially for its fiber services, and the price may be subject to increase after 12 months.
At the other end, Spectrum offers better value for money, even though it has a higher price point for comparable plans. The provider offers unlimited data with all of its internet plans and has higher starting speeds at 100 Mbps (200 Mbps in some markets). At the same time, it has no contract requirements and includes equipment rentals and fees in the price of your plan.
The bottom line: If you live in a fiber coverage area, you may want to go with Cincinnati Bell. But for most other cases, you would be better off choosing Spectrum for availability and excellent customer service.