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Best Internet Providers in Berkeley, California Best Internet Providers in Berkeley, California
What is the best internet provider in Berkeley? Sonic Telecom is the best internet provider in Berkeley, offering symmetrical upload and download speeds up... Best Internet Providers in Berkeley, California


What is the best internet provider in Berkeley?

Sonic Telecom is the best internet provider in Berkeley, offering symmetrical upload and download speeds up to 1,000Mbps for just $50 per month — a practically unheard of price for gig speeds. Equipment isn’t included, and the price increases by $10 after a year, but Sonic is still the best choice, even with those drawbacks. 

If you’re looking for even higher speeds, AT&T Fiber has the fastest internet plans in Berkeley, with symmetrical speeds up to 5,000Mbps. Unlike Sonic, AT&T includes equipment in the base price, and there are five different plans to choose from, with prices starting at $55 monthly. 

Xfinity is the cheapest internet provider in Berkeley, with an ultra-low starting price of $20 per month for 75Mbps. However, prices increase on all Xfinity plans after a year or two. If you don’t want to worry about rising bills, T-Mobile and Verizon 5G Home Internet include price-lock guarantees on all plans.

CNET considers speeds, pricing, customer service and overall value to recommend the best internet service in Berkeley across several categories. Our evaluation includes referencing a proprietary database built over years of reviewing internet services. We validate that against provider information by spot-checking local addresses for service availability. We also do a close read of providers’ terms and conditions and, when needed, will call ISPs to verify the details.

Despite our efforts to find the most recent and accurate information, our process has some limitations you should know about. Pricing and speed data are variable: Certain addresses may qualify for different service tiers, and monthly costs may vary, even within a city. The best way to identify your particular options is to plug your address into a provider’s website. 

Also, the prices, speed and other information listed above and in the provider cards below may differ from what we found in our research. The cards display the full range of a provider’s pricing and speed across the US, according to our database of plan information provided directly by ISPs. At the same time, the text is specific to what’s available in Berkeley. The prices referenced within this article’s text come from our research and include applicable discounts for setting up automatic payments each month — a standard industry offering. Other discounts and promotions might also be available for things like signing a term contract or bundling with multiple services. 

To learn more about how we review internet providers, visit our full methodology page.

Best internet in Berkeley, California

Speed range

5 – 10,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $50 per month

Our take – Sonic Telecom is a 100% fiber-to-the-home internet provider in the Bay Area, with service available to 80% of Berkeley residents, according to Federal Communication Commission data. It offers one plan for $50 per month, and you’ll get upload and download speeds of 1,000Mbps. The price increases by $10 after one year, but that’s still a terrific deal. By comparison, AT&T Fiber’s gig plan costs $80. Berkeley residents seem very satisfied with their service — I’ve never seen a Reddit board in such a unanimous agreement on the best ISP in a city. 

. . . Or call to learn more:

Check with Sonic

Speed range

5 – 10,000 Mbps

Price range

$40 – $50 per month

Speed range

300 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$55 – $250 per month

Our take – While Sonic Telecom is beloved in Berkeley, it’s not technically the fastest option in the city. That title goes to AT&T Fiber, which offers symmetrical upload and download speeds up to 5,000Mbps. Plans start at $55 per month, and equipment is included. AT&T also has the highest customer satisfaction scores of any ISP in surveys from J.D. Power and the American Customer Satisfaction Index. (As a regional provider, Sonic is not included in these.)

. . . Or call to learn more:

Check with AT&T

Speed range

300 – 5,000 Mbps

Price range

$55 – $250 per month

Speed range

75 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$20 – $120 per month

Our take – If you’re looking for the lowest possible price, Xfinity plans start at just $20 monthly in Berkeley. There are plenty of caveats that come with that bargain, though. The $20 plan requires a one-year contract and increases in price after the first and second years. Rates on every other plan are locked in for the first two years; after that, they go up by $23 to $33 per month. 

. . . Or call to learn more:

Check with Xfinity

Speed range

75 – 2,000 Mbps

Price range

$20 – $120 per month

Connection

Fixed wireless

Speed range

85 – 1,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $70 per month

Our take – Another good option if you’re looking to save on your internet bill is Verizon 5G Home Internet. It has two monthly plans for $50 and $70, but discounts are available when you bundle with an eligible Verizon Wireless plan. Verizon currently offers a five-year price guarantee on both plans and equipment is included in the base price.

. . . Or call to learn more:

Check with Verizon

Connection

Fixed wireless

Speed range

85 – 1,000 Mbps

Price range

$50 – $70 per month

Berkeley internet providers compared

Provider Internet technology Monthly price range Speed range Monthly equipment costs Data cap Contract CNET review score
AT&T Fiber Fiber $55-$250 300-5,000Mbps None None None 7.4
AT&T Internet DSL $55 Up to 140Mbps None 1.5TB on some plans None 7.4
Sonic Telecom Fiber $50 1,000Mbps $10 (optional) None None N/A
T-Mobile Home Internet Fixed wireless $50 ($30 with eligible mobile plans) 72-245Mbps None None None 7.4
Verizon 5G Home Internet Fixed wireless $50-$70 ($35-$45 for eligible Verizon Wireless customers) 50-1,000Mbps None None None 7.2
Xfinity Cable $20-$70 75-1,200Mbps $15 (included in most plans) 1.2TB, unlimited in most plans Optional 7

Show more (2 items)

Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

What’s the cheapest internet plan in Berkeley?

Show more (1 item)

Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

berkeley-california

Sundry Photography / Getty Images

How to find internet deals and promotions in Berkeley

The best internet deals and the top promotions in Berkeley depend on the discounts available during that period. Most deals are short-lived, but we look frequently for the latest offers. 

Berkeley internet providers, such as Verizon, may offer lower introductory pricing or streaming add-ons for a limited time. Many providers, including Sonic Telecom, AT&T Fiber and T-Mobile Home Internet, run the same standard pricing year-round. 

For a more extensive list of promos, check out our guide on the best internet deals.

Fastest internet plans in Berkeley

Provider Starting price Max download speed Max upload speed Data cap Connection type
AT&T Internet 5000 $250 5,000Mbps 5,000Mbps None Fiber
AT&T Internet 2000 $150 2,000Mbps 2,000Mbps None Fiber
Xfinity Gigabit Extra $70 1,200Mbps 35Mbps None Cable
AT&T Internet 1000 $80 1,000Mbps 1,000Mbps None Fiber
Sonic Telecom $50 1,000Mbps 1,000Mbps None Fiber
Xfinity Gigabit $65 1,000Mbps 20Mbps None Cable
Verizon 5G Home Plus Internet $70 ($45 with eligible mobile plans) 1,000Mbps 75Mbps None Fixed wireless

Show more (3 items)

Source: CNET analysis of provider data.

What’s a good internet speed?

Most internet connection plans can now handle basic productivity and communication tasks. If you’re looking for an internet plan that can accommodate videoconferencing, streaming video or gaming, you’ll have a better experience with a more robust connection. Here’s an overview of the recommended minimum download speeds for various applications, according to the FCC. Note that these are only guidelines and that internet speed, service and performance vary by connection type, provider and address.

For more information, refer to our guide on how much internet speed you really need.

  • 0 to 5Mbps allows you to tackle the basics: browsing the internet, sending and receiving email and streaming low-quality video.
  • 5 to 40Mbps gives you higher-quality video streaming and videoconferencing.
  • 40 to 100Mbps should give one user sufficient bandwidth to satisfy the demands of modern telecommuting, video streaming and online gaming. 
  • 100 to 500Mbps allows one to two users to simultaneously engage in high-bandwidth activities like videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming. 
  • 500 to 1,000Mbps allows three or more users to engage in high-bandwidth activities at the same time.

How CNET chose the best internet providers in Berkeley

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. 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.

It doesn’t end there. We go to the FCC’s website to check our data and ensure we consider every ISP that provides service in an area. We also input local addresses on provider websites to find specific options for residents. We look at sources, including the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power, to evaluate how happy customers are with an ISP’s service. ISP plans and prices are subject to frequent changes; all information provided is accurate as of publication.

Once we have this localized information, we ask three main questions:

  1. Does the provider offer access to reasonably fast internet speeds?
  2. Do customers get decent value for what they’re paying?
  3. 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. When selecting the cheapest internet service, we look for the plans with the lowest monthly fee, though we also factor in things like price increases, equipment fees and contracts. Choosing the fastest internet service is relatively straightforward. We look at advertised upload and download speeds and consider real-world speed data from sources like Ookla and FCC reports.

To explore our process in more depth, visit our how we test ISPs page.

Internet providers in Berkeley FAQs

What is the best internet service provider in Berkeley?

Sonic Telecom is the best internet service provider in Berkeley. It’s available to 4 in 5 homes in the city, and provides fast upload and download speeds at a lower price than most competitors. 

Is fiber internet available in Berkeley?

Yes, fiber internet is available to 85% of Berkeley homes, according to FCC data. Sonic Telecom and AT&T both offer services in the city.

What is the cheapest internet provider in Berkeley?

Xfinity is the cheapest internet provider in Berkeley, with plans starting at $20 monthly for 75Mbps speeds. 

Which internet provider in Berkeley offers the fastest plan?

AT&T Fiber offers the fastest internet plan in Berkeley, with upload and download speeds up to 5,000Mbps. 





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