Best Internet Providers in Michigan

Choosing an internet service provider isn't the most important household decision for a Michigander -- that'd be Michigan or Michigan State, of course -- but it is still one to take seriously. The internet provider and plan you choose will have an impact on your monthly budget and how well your connection can support the many things you use the internet for.

Fortunately, many Michiganders have more than just two options for home internet, and, unlike pulling for Michigan or Michigan State, the decision is probably less written in stone. Among the potential ISPs, we think Spectrum is the best internet provider overall in Michigan largely due to its fast speeds, simple pricing and broad availability throughout the state. 

That noted, our team considers speeds, pricing, customer service and overall value to recommend the best internet service in Michigan in various categories. WOW Internet offers the state's cheapest internet option, starting at $20 a month for 100Mbps. Also worth noting is the company's gigabit plan, which is the best value at $50 a month for speeds up to 1Gbps. Xfinity offers the fastest internet speed in Michigan, with a 6-gigabit fiber connection available at some residential locations. That said, AT&T, Frontier, T-Mobile and others also offer compelling internet service depending on what you're looking for and where you live in the Great Lakes State.

Best internet providers in Michigan

Ultimately, the best provider for your home will be one that's available at your address. You can use the tool at the top of this page to help find ISPs that serve your area. The list below will offer a bit more insight into what makes each stand out above the rest.  

Note: The prices, speeds and features detailed in the article text may differ from those listed in the product detail cards, which represent providers’ national offerings. Your particular internet service options -- including prices and speeds -- depend on your address and may differ from those detailed here.


Best internet provider in Michigan overall

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Product details

Price range $30- $70 per month Speed range 100 - 1,000Mbps Connection Cable Key Info Unlimited data, simple pricing, no contracts, modem included, free access to nationwide Wi-Fi hotspots

Spectrum provides the greatest high-speed internet coverage in Michigan, not necessarily in potential addresses served, but in sheer area. Availability aside, I'd recommend the cable ISP for its fair pricing and sensible speed tiers. 

Availability: Spectrum is available throughout much of Michigan, but those in the central part of the state -- the Mitten excluding the tip of the Thumb, if you will -- are most likely to be eligible for Spectrum. The cable ISP is also one of the only high-speed providers to serve the Upper Peninsula, but coverage is not great in the Lansing and Detroit areas. 

Plans and pricing: Spectrum offers a speed tier for light, medium and heavy internet use: 300 megabits per second, 500Mbps and 940Mbps, or around 1 gigabit per second. Pricing is competitive starting at $50, $70 and $90 a month, respectively, though an increase after the first year will raise that monthly price by $30. Other than the standard price increase, there is little that will add to your Spectrum bill.

Fees and service details: There are no data caps or contracts with Spectrum internet. A DOCSIS modem is included with all internet plans, though there is a $5 monthly fee for renting a Wi-Fi router.

Read our Spectrum Internet review.

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AT&T Fiber

Best fiber internet provider in Michigan

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Product details

Price range $55 - $250 per month Speed range 300 - 5,000Mbps Connection Fiber Key Info Unlimited data, no contracts, equipment included

Fiber is arguably the best internet you can get, but availability is unfortunately limited in Michigan. Only around 16% of Michigan households are wired for fiber-optic internet, according to the FCC. Much of that coverage comes from AT&T.

Availability: Fiber internet providers tend to stick to densely populated areas for a better return on the high cost of installing fiber-optic cables. That's true of AT&T Fiber in Michigan as serviceability is greatest around the Ann Arbor, Battle Creek, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Lansing areas.

Parts of Michigan, particularly the Bay City, Jackson and Midland areas, may be able to get AT&T Internet, a copper-based, DSL-like service. Available speeds vary by location but max out at around just 75Mbps, so you'd be better off checking to see if other, faster providers are available before committing to AT&T Internet.

Plans and pricing: Like Spectrum, AT&T Fiber offers a 300Mbps, 500Mbps and gigabit plan. Pricing is around the same at $55, $65 and $80 a month, respectively, though there is no set price increase after the first year. Select areas may also have access to AT&T's multigigabit plans with speeds up to 2Gbps starting at $110 a month and 5Gbps starting at $180 a month.

Fees and service details: Wi-Fi equipment is included at no extra charge with all AT&T Fiber plans. There are no contracts or data caps.

Read our AT&T home internet review.

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Best for cheap internet in Michigan

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Product details

Price range $20 - $95 per month Speed range 100 - 1,200Mbps Connection Cable Key Info Good promo prices, no contracts, unlimited data on some plans

Regional provider WideOpenWest, or WOW, also offers a decent plan selection and at prices lower than you'll find from Xfinity or nearly any other provider. Signing up online may come with the added bonus of a free gift card as well.

Availability: Those in the greater Lansing area and just outside of downtown Detroit (on the USA side) are most likely to be serviceable for WOW internet. 

Plans and pricing: WOW internet starts at $20 a month for speeds up to 100Mbps. Other plans range from 200Mbps starting at $30 a month to $95 a month for 1.2Gbps. All plans are competitively priced, but the gigabit plan is the best deal at $50 a month for speeds up to 1Gbps.

Fees and service details: There are no contracts required with WOW internet and new customers get the added comfort of a 30-day money back guarantee. A data cap of 1.5TB to 3TB may apply depending on the plan you choose, as will a $14 equipment fee should you opt to rent your Wi-Fi router.

Read our WOW Internet review.

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Best for rural internet in Michigan

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Product details

Price range $50 per month Speed range Varies Connection DSL Key Info Unlimited data, no contracts, no equipment fee

Wireless internet providers like T-Mobile Home Internet and Starlink show the potential to disrupt home internet in rural areas, but for now, tried and true wired connections are often the best bet for speed and reliability. Frontier Internet, which uses a DSL network and admittedly is not my highest-recommended service by any means, may be the only wired connection available to those in Michigan's more remote areas.

Availability: Coverage is random throughout Michigan but is greatest around Avery, Onaway and Norwood to the north; Brockway, Goodland and Cass City to the east; Muskegon to the west; the greater Lansing area; and along the southern state border. Though Frontier Internet caters primarily to rural areas, it is not available in the Upper Peninsula.

Frontier does have a small, to the point of negligible, fiber presence in Michigan. Those in the Bedford Township, Brooklyn, Muskegon and Tecumseh areas are most likely to be eligible for Frontier Fiber. 

Plans and pricing: Frontier Internet offers just one plan: $50 a month for the fastest speeds available. Frontier won't tell you what those speeds are until you go to sign up, but expect them to range anywhere from 12 to 100Mbps. 

Again, it's not the best internet deal. Still, Frontier may outperform the pricey yet limited capabilities of wireless connections like satellite internet in certain areas. If I had to choose between Frontier or satellite internet from HughesNet or Viasat, I'm going with Frontier. 

Fees and service details: Here's where Frontier shines as a rural internet provider. There are no added equipment fees, no data caps and no contracts. That's a significant advantage over HughesNet and Viasat, both of which come with hefty installation and equipment fees, restricting data caps and a two-year contract.

Read our Frontier home internet review.

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Best plan selection of Michigan ISPs

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Product details

Price range $20 - $300 per month Speed range 75 - 6,000Mbps Connection Cable Key Info Data caps on some plans, lots of plan options, solid customer satisfaction numbers

If you like options, Xfinity is the provider for you. Most customers will have six standard plans to choose from plus a unique prepaid internet plan. There's also a low-cost, yet still broadband-worthy, plan available to select qualifying households. 

Availability: Xfinity largely picks up where Spectrum stops, covering much of the lower half of Michigan including Detroit, Lansing and Kalamazoo. Service is also available at the tip of the Thumb, but you won't find it any further north.

Plans and pricing: I won't go into too much detail about each plan, but speeds range from 75Mbps to 1.2Gbps with around 200Mbps of separation between each speed tier. Pricing on standard Xfinity plans ranges from $30 to $80 per month for the first 24 months. After the introductory pricing ends, be prepared for your bill to go up by $27 to $37 depending on the plan you choose.

Fees and service details: Xfinity is one of the more confusing providers when it comes to contracts, data caps and equipment fees. They're different from one location to the next and one plan to another. 

In Michigan, anticipate a two-year contract to get the lowest introductory pricing and a monthly data cap of 1.2TB. Both are potentially avoidable, but it'll cost you. You can opt for no contract and pay more each month or settle for a shorter price guarantee. Unlimited data is available, but for an additional monthly fee. 

Wi-Fi equipment is typically included -- again, only with select plans and in certain areas -- otherwise it could add $15 to $25 to your bill should you choose to rent.

Read our Xfinity Internet review.

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All Michigan residential internet providers

I've listed my recommendations for the best internet providers in Michigan above, but they aren't the only ones you may encounter or should consider for your home. You'll find a quick comparison of popular ISPs in Michigan below, followed by a closer look at potential rural internet services.

Top Michigan internet providers

Provider Connection typeMonthly price rangeSpeed range (Mbps)Monthly data capContract
AT&T Fiber Fiber-optic$55-$180300-5,000NoneNone
AT&T Internet Copper (DSL)$55 10-100Mbps1.5TBNone
Frontier Fiber Fiber-optic$50-$155500-5,000NoneNone
Frontier Internet Copper (DSL)$50 VariesNoneNone
HughesNet Satellite$50-$1502515GB-100GB no hard data cap2 years
Mediacom Cable$20-$60100-1,000200GB-6TBNone
Mercury Broadband Fixed wireless$50-$10030-150NoneVaries
Spectrum Cable$50-$90300-940NoneNone
T-Mobile Home Internet 5G$50 72-245NoneNone
Verizon 5G Home Internet 5G$50-$7085-1,000NoneNone
Viasat Satellite$70-$30012-15040GB-300GB2 years
WOW Cable$20-$95100-1,2001.5TB-unlimitednone
Xfinity Cable$30-$8075-1,2001.2TB2 years (optional)
Show more (9 items)

Source: CNET analysis of provider data

Rural and 5G home internet in Michigan

In areas where a wired connection will not reach, wireless internet may be the last resort for broadband internet. Here are the providers you may want to consider in rural Michigan.

HughesNet: You won't get much speed variety with HughesNet as all plans come with max speeds of 25Mbps down and 3Mbps up, the bare minimum to qualify as "broadband." Pricing ranges from $50 to $150 a month for 15GB to 100GB of data. Once you've surpassed your data allowance, HughesNet may slow your speeds for the remainder of the billing cycle. 

Mercury Broadband: Fixed wireless providers like Mercury Broadband can typically offer faster speeds and higher data allowances than satellite internet. In the case of Mercury, speeds of 30Mbps to 150Mbps are available in most service areas, and there are no data caps to worry about. At $50 to $100 a month, the pricing is fair for what you get compared with the alternatives.

Starlink: If you want fast internet in rural Michigan, especially in the northern part of the state and the Upper Peninsula, Starlink may be your best bet. Speeds of 250Mbps or higher are available in those areas of Michigan, according to the FCC, though signing up will potentially cost you $600 to get started and $120 a month thereafter.

T-Mobile Home Internet: Aside from Frontier, T-Mobile 5G Home Internet may be your best option for internet in rural Michigan. Broadband coverage spans much of the state, speeds range from 72Mbps to 245Mbps and the $50-a-month service comes with unlimited data, no equipment fees and no contracts.

Viasat: Potential speeds are a bit higher with Viasat compared to HughesNet. Much of Michigan can get download speeds of 50Mbps or higher with Viasat. Data allowances are also marginally higher with Viasat, but so are the prices, unfortunately. Plans start at $70 to $300 a month and the rate increases after a short three-month period. 

What about Verizon 5G Home Internet? That's currently less of a rural option, though it could serve as a low-cost, low-hassle alternative to traditional wired internet providers in Ann Arbor, Detroit and Grand Rapids -- areas where Verizon's Ultra Wideband network is most accessible. Service is $50 a month for speeds of 85Mbps to 300Mbps, or it's $70 a month for 300Mbps to 1Gbps. Eligible Verizon mobile customers can get 50% off Verizon's 5G home internet service for a limited time.

One of the arches along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

One of the arches along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

simplycmb/Getty Images

Michigan broadband at a glance

Per the most recent FCC data, broadband speeds of 25Mbps down, 3Mbps up are available to 100% of Michigan households. Satellite internet skews that number a bit, however, as only 87% of residences can get broadband speeds from a wired cable, DSL or fiber-optic connection. Still, many in Michigan's more densely populated areas will have access to two or more practical options for high-speed internet.

Internet pricing in Michigan

WOW and Xfinity have the cheapest internet plans among major ISPs in Michigan. WOW's cheapest plan edges out Xfinity's in price and speed, but either is a solid choice for budget-friendly broadband. For added savings, consider using your own Wi-Fi equipment. Rental fees from WOW and Xfinity could inflate your bill by around $15 a month but you can skip the fee by using your own compatible router.

If you can't get WOW or Xfinity, or want a little more speed than the 75Mbps to 100Mbps you'd get, expect to pay at least $50 to $60 a month for the service. AT&T, Frontier, Spectrum, T-Mobile 5G and Verizon 5G all start around there, though none come with fees that will excessively add to the cost. 

Internet for low-income households in Michigan

The Affordable Connectivity Program is available to all qualifying Michigan residents and grants up to $30 a month ($75 on Tribal lands) to put toward paying for home internet service. Here's how to know if you're eligible and instructions on how to apply.

In addition to the ACP credit, various Michigan ISPs offer plans designed to help low-income households stay connected. When combined with the ACP credit, these plans may be available at a net cost of $0.

Low-income internet plans in Michigan

Plan Starting priceMax download speed (Mbps)Equipment fee
Access from AT&T $30 100None
Spectrum Internet Assist $18 30None
Xfinity Internet Essentials $10-$3050-100None

Source: CNET analysis of provider data

How fast is broadband in Michigan?

Gigabit download speeds are available throughout much of Michigan thanks to high-speed providers including AT&T Fiber, Spectrum, WOW and Xfinity, among others. Upload speeds are a different story, however, as fiber internet -- essentially the only technology to offer symmetrical or close download and upload speeds -- is limited to roughly 16% of Michigan residences. 

Recent speed test reports by Ookla placed Michigan 22nd for fastest download speeds at 182Mbps. Xfinity was the fastest provider in the state, averaging speeds of 236Mbps. Upload speeds expectedly did not fare as well. Michigan ranked 36th in upload speeds at around 20Mbps. 

Keep in mind that there are many factors affecting tested internet speeds. Using an Ethernet versus Wi-Fi connection, distance from your router when using Wi-Fi and a plan's max speeds can all have an impact on tested speeds. While Michigan's tested speeds are somewhat middle of the pack, faster speeds are certainly available to many Michigan residents.

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.

  • 0 to 5Mbps allows you to tackle the basics -- browsing the internet, sending and receiving email, 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 engage in high-bandwidth activities such as videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming simultaneously 
  • 500 to 1,000Mbps allows three or more users to engage in high-bandwidth activities such as videoconferencing, streaming and online gaming simultaneously 

How CNET chose the best internet providers in Michigan

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

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. 

When it comes to selecting the cheapest internet service -- the criteria are relatively simple. We look for the service package with the lowest monthly fee, though we also take into consideration promotional rates and price per megabit. 

As for choosing the fastest internet service, we look at provider throughput. Most often, that means a fiber-optic service. That said, fiber availability may be limited to a smaller percentage of addresses. 

To explore our process in more depth, visit our How We Test ISPs page.

Michigan internet FAQs

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Is internet in Michigan any good?

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Is Spectrum or Xfinity better?

Updated on July 26, 2023

Written by  David Anders
CNET staff -- not advertisers, partners or business interests -- determine how we review the products and services we cover. If you buy through our links, we may get paid. Reviews ethics statement
David Anders Senior Writer
David Anders is a senior writer for CNET covering broadband providers, smart home devices and security products. Prior to joining CNET, David built his industry expertise writing for the broadband marketplace Allconnect. In his 5 plus years covering broadband, David's work has been referenced by a variety of sources including ArcGIS, DIRECTV and more. David is from and currently resides in the Charlotte area with his wife, son and two cats.
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