What’s the best internet overall in Georgia?
It’ll depend on where you live, but for those who have access to it, AT&T Fiber is CNET’s pick for the best internet in Georgia. It will be your best bet for its speed, reliability and pricing. CNET examines customer service, speed, pricing and overall value before recommending the best broadband in your area.
AT&T Fiber, however, is fairly limited within the state, and worse yet, there are only a handful of ISP options even within Georgia’s urban areas — check out our guide to ISPs in Atlanta — mainly Xfinity, Spectrum and Google Fiber. AT&T also offers its copper-based internet in Georgia, but we don’t recommend it.
In rural areas, there are even fewer choices, mainly boiling down to Kinetic by Windstream, Mediacom and Sparklight, depending on the area. Statewide, 5G home internet from both T-Mobile and Verizon are available based on individual addresses as well as satellite internet from HughesNet, Viasat and SpaceX, whose Starlink satellite internet service is available in certain pockets of the Peach State.
Best internet options in Georgia
Your choice of ISP may be limited in Georgia, particularly if you live in a rural area, but the below list should make choosing among your available options a bit easier. All prices listed on this page reflect available discounts for setting up paperless billing. If you decide not to go with automatic monthly payments, your price will be higher.
Note: The prices, speeds and features detailed in the article text may differ from those listed in the product detail cards, representing providers’ national offerings. Your particular internet service options — including prices and speeds — depend on your address and may differ from those detailed here.
Rural internet options in Georgia
|Fort Valley, Warner Robbins, Hawkinsville, Reidsville, Pooler, Statesboro
|Kinetic by Windstream
|North, Central, South
|Atlanta area, southwest, Savannah area
|40 to 220Mbps
|Various spots across state
|Entire state outside Atlanta area
Show more (2 items)
Source: CNET analysis of provider data
Internet access in rural Georgia isn’t too hard to come by. Various ISPs, including Hargray, Kinetic by Windstream and Mediacom, provide wired connections in various parts of the state. Still, it’s worthwhile to compare these providers to the 5G home internet options from T-Mobile and Verizon, which have availability throughout Georgia. If your options are still severely limited, there are three choices for satellite internet, although Viasat and Starlink have limitations within the state.
Georgia internet details at a glance
No surprise, but Georgia’s cities fare much better in terms of ISP choices than the rest of the state. Even still, only 36% of Georgians have access to fiber-based internet. But everyone in the Peach State can get online at decent speeds, even if it’s through a rural or satellite carrier.
Georgia internet speeds
Likely due to the availability of fiber internet from AT&T, Google and Kinetic by Windstream, median download speeds in Georgia sit at about 178Mbps, according to Ookla, positioning the state at 31st among the 50 states and the District of Columbia in terms of download speeds. Interestingly, Ookla does not hail one of the fiber providers as the fastest in Georgia. That distinction goes to Spectrum, with median download speeds of about 234Mbps. On the city side, in Ookla’s rankings of the 100 most populous US cities, Atlanta fared poorly, coming in near the bottom at 99th place, with median download speeds of about 93Mbps. Google Fiber is the fastest carrier there, with median speeds of approximately 276Mbps.
Internet pricing in Georgia
What you’ll pay for internet in Georgia will come down to where you live and what providers service your area, but a good expectation for the monthly cost of connecting online in the Peach State is about $40. The cheapest plans available are Xfinity’s 75Mbps plan for $30 per month, the 200Mbps plan for $35 a month, and Mediacom’s 100Mbps plan for the starting price of $20 monthly. Those who qualify for the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program could get $30 knocked off their monthly bills.
The future of broadband in Georgia
Georgia is set to receive $1.3 billion in federal funds from the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment program, the Georgia Recorderreports. BEAD aims to “build thousands of miles of fiber-optic cables and provide a $30 monthly discount on internet bills for economically disadvantaged families.” This is the latest funding the state received to expand internet access. Earlier this year, Governor Brian Kemp announced $234 million in funding to improve connectivity for 28 Georgia counties. Smaller projects are already taking shape. Conexon Connect, an ISP formed by the rural fiber-optic network design and construction management company, announced plans to expand fiber access in Grady County using federal funds. Windstream has also announced plans to expand access in Georgia’s southern and northern parts.
How CNET chose the best internet providers in Georgia
Internet service providers are numerous and regional. Unlike the latest smartphone, laptop, router or kitchen tool, it’s impractical to personally test every ISP in a given city. So what’s our approach? We start by researching the pricing, availability and speed information drawing on our own historical ISP data, the provider sites and mapping information from the Federal Communications Commission at FCC.gov.
But it doesn’t end there. We go to the FCC’s website to check our data and ensure we’re considering every ISP that provides service in an area. We also input local addresses on provider websites to find specific options for residents. To evaluate how happy customers are with an ISP’s service, we look at sources including the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power. ISP plans and prices are subject to frequent changes; all information provided is accurate as of the time of publication.
Once we have this localized information, we ask three main questions:
- Does the provider offer access to reasonably fast internet speeds?
- Do customers get decent value for what they’re paying?
- Are customers happy with their service?
While the answer to those questions is often layered and complex, the providers who come closest to “yes” on all three are the ones we recommend.
To explore our process in more depth, visit our how we test ISPs page.
Internet providers in Georgia FAQs